X-Men: First Class is a 2011 American superhero film by Matthew Vaughn and produced by Bryan Singer, based on the characters appearing in Marvel Comics. The fifth installment in the X-Men series was released on June 1, 2011, in the UK and on June 3 in the U.S., achieving positive reviews and box-office success.
The film acts as a prequel for the X-Men trilogy, set primarily in 1962 during the Cuban Missile Crisis. It focuses on the relationship between Charles Xavier and Erik Lensherr and the origin of their groups, the X-Men and the Brotherhood of Mutants.
The film stars James McAvoy as Xavier and Michael Fassbender as Magneto. Other cast members include Kevin Bacon, January Jones, Rose Byrne, Jennifer Lawrence, Zoë Kravitz, Nicholas Hoult and Lucas Till.
Henry Jackman wrote the score, which draws inspiration from John Barry's work in the James Bond films as "Matthew saw Magneto as an early James Bond, we wanted to update that Barry-esque feeling for our 21st-century". The British band Take That provided the film's official song, "Love Love", played during the end credits.
X-Men: First Class, which opened on approximately 6,900 screens at 3,641 locations, earned $55.1 million on its opening weekend and also debuted at No.1 at the American and Canadian box office, including $3.37 million at its Friday midnight launch.
This opening was much lower than the opening weekends of X-Men: The Last Stand ($102.7 million), X2: X-Men United ($85.5 million), and X-Men Origins: Wolverine ($85.0 million), but it was slightly higher than the original film ($54.5 million).
Executives at 20th Century Fox said they achieved their goal by opening with about the same numbers as the first X-Men film and that it was an excellent start to a new chapter of the franchise. The film also brought in $61 million at foreign box offices during its opening weekend. In its second weekend X-Men: First Class dropped 56.2%, the second smallest second weekend drop in the franchise behind X-2: X-Men United (53.2%), and came in with an estimated $24.1 million, in second place to Super 8.