SDCC 2020: Marvel's The New Mutants opening scene shows apocalyptic terror

Maisie Williams says playing Rahne Sinclair/Wolfsbane is a welcome change from playing Arya Stark on Game of Thrones.

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Gael Cooper
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The New Mutants is an X-Men spinoff.

20th Century Fox/Disney

Writer/director Josh Boone and cast members Maisie Williams, Anya Taylor-Joy, Charlie Heaton, Alice Braga, Blu Hunt and Henry Zaga participated in a Comic-Con@Home panel on Thursday for the original horror-thriller  Marvel's  New Mutants. The actors and director discussed the making of the much-delayed film, and shared the movie's opening scene. (Brief spoilers ahead.)

In that scene, which can be seen starting at about 24:14 into the half-hour video below, Danielle Moonstar (Blu Hunt) is shaken awake by her father, who yanks her outside into an apocalyptic, ash-filled scenario that doesn't end well for him. Dani then finds herself waking up handcuffed to a metal bed inside a mysterious facility, and she's not the only specially powered teen who's there. The brief opening scene was followed by a teaser reel showing scenes from throughout the film. The teaser reel showed all the mutants, plus Dr. Reyes (Alice Braga).

The five New Mutants all must face their own worst fears, including the terrifying Demon Bear from the comics. Comic book illustrator Bill Sienkiewicz briefly joined the panel to chat with the cast and director.

Williams, who plays the shy and reserved Rahne Sinclair/Wolfsbane, said she appreciated playing a character so different from her iconic role as the bold and murderous Arya Stark in HBO's blockbuster hit Game of Thrones.

"I was really thrilled to play someone like Rahne, because I've always kind of seen myself as more that character," Williams said. "When I play Arya, I always have to command the room, and be really brave and strong, and that's kind of exhausting, and I don't really feel like that."

Boone had previously confirmed that Williams' and Hunt's characters would have a same-sex love story.

"In the typically quite masculine world of superheroes, it was just lovely to see these two fragile women who just protect one another and bring light out in each other," Williams said. 

Heaton, who plays Sam Guthrie/Cannonball, was also asked to compare that character with another outcast and misfit role of his, that of Jonathan Byers on Netflix's Stranger Things. 

"With Sam, I guess, in a way where he would differ from a character like Jonathan from Stranger Things ... I mean, obviously, the (mutant) power," Heaton said. "I found that there was this kind of strength in Sam, and leadership qualities that he might have ... and yeah, there was a real inner pain with Sam."

Although the film is an X-Men spinoff, it's not connected to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The movie released its first trailer in 2017 and was originally meant to come out in 2018, but suffered multiple delays. Another trailer came out in January.

Text at the beginning of the panel joked about the film's many previous release dates before listing Aug. 28, 2020, as the current hoped-for premiere, but added "fingers crossed."

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