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|Appeared in|| X-Men|
X2: X-Men United
X-Men: The Last Stand
X-Men: Days of Future Past
|Status|| Deceased (Original Timeline)|
Alive (New Timeline)
|Actor|| Famke Janssen|
- "Mutation: it is the key to our evolution. It has enabled us to evolve from a single-celled organism into the dominant species on the planet. This process is slow, and normally taking thousands and thousands of years. But every few hundred millennia, evolution leaps forward."
- ―Jean Grey [src]
Jean Grey, aka the Phoenix, is a class 5 mutant who has telepathic and telekinetic abilities and is extremely powerful and dangerous. She also has been in relationships with both Cyclops and Wolverine.
20 Years before X-Men: The Last Stand
Magneto and Professor X arrive at the Greys' home, on 1769 in an unknown street where they meet a young Jean Grey. The powers of the little girl are beyond imagination, and, while Lensherr wants to use them, Xavier fears them and decides to create mental blocks to restrain them. During her sessions with Professor X, Jean developed a dual personality - one being her usual self who can control her power and the other being her powerful and uninhibited side which called itself in Jean's sessions with the Professor the Phoenix which emerges when she loses control of her powers.
- "Mutants are not the ones mankind should fear."
- ―Jean Grey [src]
When Wolverine and Rogue are attacked by The Brotherhood of Evil Mutants and saved by Cyclops and Storm, Jean Grey is the one who cures them once in the X-Mansion. When Wolverine awakes, he's confused and feared and attacks Jean before fleeing. When Professor Xavier has explained to Wolverine the situation, he comes to Jean for making his excuses. The two have a talk, with Wolverine putting Jean's power to a test and teasing her, thus provoking Cyclops' jealousy.
When Xavier is made unconscious by Mystique's poison, Jean uses Cerebro to track down Rogue and Magneto, but her powers aren't powerful enough to use it and, even if she manages to locate them, the machine drains her out making her faint, and erasing the mental blocks Xavier built for restraining the Phoenix.
When the X-Men arrive on Liberty Island to fight the Brotherhood, Jean fights against Toad, yet Toad turned the tables on Jean spewing a thick phlegm-mucus-slime onto her face in which she struggles for oxygen and is found by Cyclops to much of his horror, he saves her by blasting the encrusted slime away. Once on the top of the Liberty Statue, Jean is captured by Magneto with the other X-Men, but manages to break free using her powers and Scott's. She then uses her telekinesis to send Wolverine to Magneto's machine, so freeing Rogue moments before Brotherhood's plan is accomplished. After the mission, she gives cure to Xavier, assisting him until he's healed from the poisoning. With Magneto captured and the Brotherhood disbanded, Jean can restart her usual life in the school as a teacher.
Jean has restarted her life as it was prior to Magneto's threat, but something has changed: her powers has increased drastically since the day she used Cerebro, and Scott is starting to get worried about their extent: when Jean has some nightmares, in fact, she's powerful enough to shake the entire room.
After Nightcrawler's attack to the President, Jean and Storm are sent to track the mutant and bring him to Professor X. Just for testing her new abilities, Jean drives the X-Jet with her powers, thus making Storm worried about her conditions. The two X-Girls find Nightcrawler in an abandoned church and learn from him that he was forced to attack the White House while under some kind of mind control. Nightcrawler joins the two, and they all together comes back home. On the way to the X-Mansion, Jean and Storm discover that the school has been attacked by William Stryker's men and that the students are prisoners of Weapon X. Intercepting a call from Wolverine, Jean and Storm picks up him and three students (Rogue, Iceman and Pyro) just before they cause too much damage to the Boston police. In flight, the X-Jet is attacked by two F-16's, and Jean uses her power to destroy the missiles they have launched, with her eyes starting to glow with a strange red light. One of the missiles manages to hit the jet, and the X-Men are saved by Magneto, who offers an alliance against Stryker. During a briefing, the former enemies share the respective information about Stryker and his group, and decides for an attack to the Alkali Lake base. Jean finds the location of Stryker's base by reading Nightcrawler's memories. Jean finds out that the base is underground at Alkali lake.
In the base, Jean fights with a brainwashed Cyclops, and she manages to defeat him surpassing the limits of her powers, becoming surrounded by a red, fiery aura. After the battle, the X-Jet is damaged and can't leave the place before the dam bursts. Jean makes a decision, and leaves the jet: using her powers, she stops the flood and raises the jet on the water, then she activates the main engines and makes her teammates flee, just a moment before releasing the flood on herself. All her teammates believe Jean's dead, but, deep under the waters of Alkali Lake, a phoenix-shaped light begins to glow.
Depressed by Jean's death, Scott Summers goes to Alkali Lake to mourn his loss. Once here, he releases a powerful optical blast in the lake, and the ray breaks a telekinetic cocoon built from the Phoenix at the bottom of the lake. Jean Grey lives again, and reaches her beloved on the shore. She takes his glasses, managing to control Scott's power with hers, and the two share a kiss, looking one in each other's eyes for the first time. During the kiss, Jean abandons herself to instinct and accidentally kills Scott. Worried for Cyclops, the other X-Men arrive on the shore, finding Scott's glasses floating in the air with stones and logs.
A little distant, they find Jean, fainted, and, surprised, they take her back to the X-Mansion. Once there, she tries to seduce Wolverine, but when he refuses her and tries to know about Scott, she explodes: after attacking Logan, confused and angry, she escapes the Mansion and comes back to her childhood home. In here, she's reached by both the X-Men and The Brotherhood of Evil Mutants, who start a fight while Xavier and Magneto try to convince Jean to join their respective sides.
When Xavier tries to block her powers again, the Phoenix gets enraged and unleashes all her might, making everyone fly away, destroying her home and killing Professor X. Confused and saddened by her mentor's death, Jean follows Magneto to his hideout. Wolverine follows them and tries to talk with Jean, but the Phoenix personality is strong and sends him flying in the woods.
Magneto believes he can use the Phoenix's powers for his aims, and brings her with him to Alcatraz Island to destroy Worthington's facility. During the battle that follows X-Men's arrival, Magneto tries to make the Phoenix join the battle, but she's not interested, not even when Magneto is depowered by the Cure. Wolverine almost manages to make Jean's personality resurface, but the human soldiers intensify the fire on all the mutants, Phoenix included, so unleashing her rage.
The Phoenix starts a massive attack on everything and everyone, destroying Worthington's facility and killing human and mutants on her way. While everyone is forced to escape, only Wolverine manages to go near her, since his healing factor prevents her from pulverizing him. When the Phoenix angrily asks him: "Would you die for them?", Logan replies "Not for them. For you." In that very moment, Jean resurfaces for a moment and begs Wolverine to stop her. In tears, declaring his love to her, Wolverine stabs Jean Grey, killing the Phoenix and putting an end to the destruction. Jean's grave is put near Scott's and Xavier's, so reuniting them in some way.
- "It's too late"
- ―Jean Grey[src]
Jean appeared to Logan as a hallucination, usually in his dreams making him feel guilt for the part he had in her death and for all of the other deaths he had caused.
- "I saw the end of the world. I could feel all this death..."
- ―Jean Grey[src]
In 1983, Jean Grey is a student at Xaviers School of Gifted Youngster. she is an outsider and is feared by some students due to the uncontrollable nature of her powers. She has had previous instances where nightmares (due to the emerging Phoenix Force) have caused her powers to overload and shake the whole school, scaring her fellow students. She is later seen walking to class where she bumps into new student Scott Summers with his brother Alex, he accidentally knocks her books out of her hands but she catches them with her telekinesis, she also looks into his mind briefly to Scott's annoyance. Jean goes to the campus to practice her archery, a special training technique Professor X gave her, she witnesses Scott unleash his power and destroy Charles' favourite tree.
Due to Logan traveling back in time and altering the past, Jean and Scott are no longer dead and are still active within the X-Men.
Jean is a gentle and motherly woman, responsible and with some leader abilities. She is in love with Cyclops, but she does not dislike flirting with Wolverine, both of them representing two different aspects of her own personality, the loyal and noble one and the savage and animalistic one. A complex, conflicted and unstable creature of both extreme compassion and extreme destruction, Jean was ultimately a good-hearted, selfless, empathetic and benevolent woman, but also unsure of her own abilities and terrified of her own unpredictable power. Jean, as a young woman, appeared to have come to terms with being considered a freak, since she did not react to the other students at Xavier's School deriding her and excommunicating her behind her back. She had an immense capacity for care for the people she loved and was attached to, especially Scott Summers and Charles Xavier.
As the Phoenix, her personality had changed completely, and she became a violent and confused person, always abandoning herself to emotions and instinct.
Powers and Abilities
As a class 5 mutant and as the Phoenix, Jean is one of the most, if not the most powerful mutant on the planet.
- Telepathy: Jean can communicate with others, with her telepathy. In X-Men: Apocalypse, she was able to make her, Nightcrawler and Cyclop's invisible to Stryker's guards. Her telepathic powers were extraordinary, on par with Charles', maybe even eclipsing and exceeding them, and she was one of the precious, precious few people to be able to navigate Cerebro.
- Telekinesis: Jean can move objects with her power of telekinesis. Like her telepathy, her telekinetic powers were spectacular, enabling her to move objects without having to look at them or make hand gestures, and even able to repel a tremendous flood for a stunningly long time, though this eventually superseded her limits and unlocked her Phoenix persona.
- Telekinesis: As the Phoenix, Jean's telekinesis is powerful enough to move the single atoms, so it gave her the possibility to literally disintegrate anything.
- Telepathy: As the Phoenix, Jean's telepathy is such that she has the ability to exceed even Charles Xavier in mental power.
- Flight: Due to her telekinesis, Jean is able to fly.
- Pyrokinesis: Jean can generate, create, and manipulate fire.
- Pyrogenesis: Jean can generate and project fire from both hands.
- Atmokinesis: Jean can manipulate the weather. In X-Men:The Last Stand, Jean made it lightning and rain.
- Astral Projection
- Energy Asorption
- Energy Manipulation
- Expert Pilot: Jean is capable of flying the X-Jet.
- Skilled Leader: Jean has some skills as a capable leader.
- X-Woman uniform: Jean wears a protective suit, when she is out on the field in battle.
- Charles Xavier - Mentor.
- Scott Summers - Fiancée and teammate
- Wolverine - Friend/Lover and teammate
- Ororo Munroe - Friend and teammate.
- Henry McCoy - Friend and teammate.
- Kurt Wagner - Ally
- Marie - Student and teammate.
- Bobby Drake - Student and teammate.
- Peter Rasputin - Student
- Katherine Pryde - Student
- Erik Lehnsherr - Enemy.
- Raven Darkholme - Enemy.
- Sabretooth - Enemy.
- Toad - Enemy.
- William Stryker - Enemy
- Yuriko Oyama - Enemy.
- John Allerdyce - Student and turned enemy turned Ally.
- Original timeline (4 films)
- New timeline (2 films)
Behind the scenes
- Some of Jean's scenes in X-Men were originally written for the character of Beast, were cut from the final version.
- According to Bryan Singer, he conceived the idea of Jean Grey's death mid-way through production. During the filming of the museum scene, he privately met with Famke Janssen to discuss the concept of Jean dying at the end of this film, with the allusion to her return as Phoenix in the next sequel. Janssen enthusiastically agreed.
- Famke Janssen did much research on Dissociative Identity Disorder (split personality) in order to make her performance with Hugh Jackman in the medical lab more realistic.
- In the comics, Jean Grey turns into the Phoenix while possessed by the cosmic entity known as the Phoenix Force, while in the movie the Phoenix is just a second personality. Similar to the film, in the Ultimate Marvel comics storyline, the Phoenix is treated as a secondary mutation instead of a cosmic entity.
- It is implied in X-Men commentary that Jean's inexpert use of Cerebro caused her transformation in Phoenix.
- Some parts of Jean's storyline in X-Men: The Last Stand are loosely based on the Dark Phoenix Saga by Chris Claremont and John Byrne.
- In the comics, Jean and Scott eventually married and in an alternate future had a daughter, Rachel.
- In the comics, Jean was not a doctor. Originally Beast was set to appear in the first film, but the technology was not yet adequate to portray him, so his character was written out and Jean took on the role of team scientist.
- In X-Men: The Last Stand, for her dual role as Jean Gray/Phoenix, Famke Janssen extensively researched dissociative identity disorders and split personalities to make her performance convincing.
- The color red is often associated with Jean. When she's not in her X-Men uniform, she often likes to wear red clothing.
X2: X-Men United
X-Men: The Last Stand
Concept Art and Filming