Here’s Every Movie Patrick Stewart Plays Professor X, Ranked

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Fans were surprised to hear the voice of Charles Xavier, a.k.a. Professor X, in a trailer for Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. Professor X was the founder and leader of the X-Men, a team of mutants that worked to maintain peaceful relations between humans and mutants. Previously, the X-Men movies had always been entirely separate from the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness has changed the game by introducing a character from the world of X-Men to the MCU for the very first time.

English actor Patrick Stewart played the role of Professor X in seven X-Men films. The X-Men franchise has been credited with being one of the movies responsible for helping pioneer the modern superhero film genre. The first X-Men film was released in the year 2000, preceding Tobey Maguire’s Spider-Man films as well as the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe. While the X-Men film franchise has concluded, they have left behind an incredible cinematic legacy. As we await Charles Xavier’s debut in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, let’s have a look at his previous films. Here is every movie where Patrick Stewart played Professor X, ranked.

7 X-Men Origins: Wolverine


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20th Century Studios

Wolverine was arguably the most popular character of all the X-Men movies, but his origin film was a bust. The movie had a poor script dominated by film clichés and an incredible amount of cheese. Ryan Reynolds made his first appearance as Deadpool in X-Men Origins: Wolverine but did not wear his iconic red costume. Additionally, the normally very talkative Deadpool had his mouth sown shut. The film did not do justice to any of its many characters. Its main contribution to the franchise was showing how Wolverine had his skeleton bonded with adamantium. Professor X only briefly appeared at the end of the film to rescue mutants. The digital de-aging in the 2009 film was not great, and unfortunately made Professor X look somewhat creepy.


6 X-Men: The Last Stand


Xavier-and-Dark-Phoenix-Battle-in-X-Men-The-Last-Stand
20th Century Studios

X-Men: The Last Stand stood side-by-side with X-Men Origins: Wolverine as one of the worst-reviewed movies in the franchise. It suffered from poor direction, lack of depth, and was ultimately a disappointing end to the original X-Men trilogy. A plot revolving around a mutant “cure” had great storytelling potential, but the film did little to explore it. The Last Stand simultaneously tried to adapt the “Dark Phoenix Saga,” which was one of the greatest storylines in X-Men comic history. The Dark Phoenix Saga, however, is too large for a single movie to adapt. Even more so when that movie is also trying to tell a story about a mutant “cure” and its consequences. Both stories required better directing and writing to be done justice.

Related: Explained: Didn’t Professor X Die in X-Men: The Last Stand?


5 The Wolverine


wolverine professor
20th Century Studios

Seven years after his death in X-Men: The Last Stand, Professor X returned in a mid-credits scene for The Wolverine. The Wolverine was a significant improvement over the previous Wolverine solo-film, telling an enjoyable new story set in Japan. The action sequences and cinematography were some of the franchise’s best. The movie explored Wolverine’s struggle living as a near-immortal being and his relationship with his powers. It wasn’t the most memorable X-Men film, but The Wolverine managed to focus on Logan and explore the character when he was not around the other X-Men.

4 X-Men


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20th Century Studios

2000’s X-Men changed superhero movies and the world as we know it. This was many people’s first introduction to the team of Marvel superheroes. At the time, superhero films were not as frequent and were not taken too seriously. X-Men proved that they could tell emotionally resonant stories with strong characters and great performances. The film was set in a world where a group of super-powered beings known as mutants existed alongside regular humans. They were not admired and hailed as heroes like the Avengers. The mutants had to fight for acceptance of their kind, and the X-Men and the Brotherhood of Mutants had two radically different approaches towards achieving that.


3 X2: X-Men United


Marvel Wanted Patrick Stewart to Return as Professor X, But Logan Changed That Plan

X2: X-Men United was released three years after the original X-Men. It became one of the sequels in Hollywood that were better than the original. X2 introduced new mutants while bringing back many of the characters from the first film. The action sequences, character work, and storyline continued to impress fans. In X2, Colonel William Stryker, a new character, sought to destroy all of mutantkind. The threat of a shared enemy led the X-Men to work together with Magneto’s Brotherhood of Mutants. Beyond the super heroics, the X-Men sequel explored some important social themes and constructed mutants as a cinematic stand-in for those who are different.

2 X-Men: Days of Future Past


X-Men-Days-of-Future-Past-Trailer-Old-and-New-Xavier
20th Century Studios

The original X-Men movie timeline that started with X-Men (2000) came to an end in X-Men: Days of Future Past. In the film, Professor X and Magneto put their differences aside in response to a dystopian future ruled by the Sentinels. To stop that future from ever happening, Kitty Pryde sent Wolverine’s consciousness back in time to prevent a major historical event. The stakes were high, the performances were fantastic, and Simon Kinberg wrote a marvelous script that allowed the film to have maximum emotional impact. There were few moments in the franchise as emotionally resonant as when Patrick Stewart’s Charles Xavier met his younger self, played by James McAvoy. It was all supplemented by a strong score from John Ottman. Days of Future Past was a powerful film that towered above the other installments in the X-Men franchise.

Related: James McAvoy Would Rather Play Young Jean-Luc Picard Than Professor X Again

1 Logan


logan professor x
20th Century Studios

Logan was the send-off for Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine and was also originally the send-off for Patrick Stewart’s Professor X. Stewart played an older Charles Xavier in his 90s who suffered from dementia. Prior to the events of the film, Xavier accidentally killed many of the X-Men and injured hundreds of people. Logan was a brutal, violent R-rated film that represented a significant departure from traditional superhero fare. Director James Mangold intended Logan to be a more mature, thought-provoking film for older audiences. The film succeeded, never being dark and edgy for the sake of being dark and edgy, but using the appropriate tone for its world, characters, and story. Logan understood the struggle of mutants and that one of the most central themes of the X-Men franchise has always been family. The film has become the best-reviewed of all X-Men films and has made its way to #5 on Rotten Tomatoes’ 79 Best Superhero Movies of All Time list.


Patrick Stewart as Professor X
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