X-Men: The Last Stand
X-Men: The Last Stand is a 2006 superhero film, based on the X-Men superhero team introduced in Marvel Comics. The film, distributed by 20th Century Fox, is the sequel to 2003's X2 and the third installment in the X-Men film series. It was directed by Brett Ratner, written by Simon Kinberg and Zak Penn, and features an ensemble cast, including Hugh Jackman, Halle Berry, Ian McKellen, Famke Janssen, Anna Paquin, Kelsey Grammer, James Marsden, Rebecca Romijn, Shawn Ashmore, Aaron Stanford, Vinnie Jones, and Patrick Stewart. The film's script is loosely based on two X-Men comic book story arcs: "The Dark Phoenix Saga" by writer Chris Claremont and artist John Byrne, and "Gifted" by writer Joss Whedon and artist John Cassaday, with a plot that revolves around a "mutant cure" that causes serious repercussions among mutants and humans, and on the resurrection of Jean Grey.
Bryan Singer, who had directed the two previous films, X-Men (2000) and X2, decided to leave to work on Superman Returns, as he had not even defined the storyline for a third film. Matthew Vaughn, who was initially hired as the new director, left due to personal and professional issues, and was replaced with Ratner. Filming took place from August 2005 to January 2006 with a budget of $210 million, and was consequently the most expensive film at the time of its release. It had extensive visual effects created by 11 different companies.
X-Men: The Last Stand was released on May 26, 2006, to commercial success. It grossed approximately $459 million worldwide, becoming the seventh-highest-grossing film of 2006; it was at the time the highest-grossing film in the series and currently the fourth-highest-grossing film of the franchise. Critical reception was mixed, with the acting and the action scenes receiving positive notice, and criticism directed at the screenplay, overuse of characters, and style.