With the latest X-Men movie opening in theaters today, isn't it about time you got to really know the mutants' universe? From the comics to the movies, here are 25 Facts You Probably Didn't Know About the X-Men.

  • 1

    There is a mutant named Goldballs, who has the ability to -- you guessed it -- shoot gold balls from his body.

  • 2

    Russell Crowe passed on being Wolverine, suggesting his friend Hugh Jackman for the role instead.

  • 3

    Wolverine's first appearance actually came in the Incredible Hulk issue No. 180 in 1974.

  • 4

    Northstar, an openly gay member of the X-Men, married his partner, Kyle Jinadu, in Astonishing X-Men No. 51 in 2012.

  • 5

    In 1996, Marvel and DC had a crossover event where their superheroes faced off against each other. Wolverine took on Lobo, Quicksilver faced the Flash, Jubilee matched up with Robin and Storm fought Wonder Woman.

  • 6

    During Chuck Austen's much-maligned run as a writer for the X-Men, there was a storyline in which a group of radicals actually crucified a number of X-Men, including Jubilee.

  • 7

    Joss Whedon was brought in as a script doctor for the first X-Men film, but nothing came of it except for Storm's infamous line about toads and Wolverine calling Cyclops a dick.

  • 8

    In 1998, there was a crossover novel between the X-Men and the characters of 'Star Trek: The Next Generation.' The resemblance between Professor Xavier and Jean-Luc Picard (both played by Patrick Stewart) is even mentioned at one point.

  • 9

    Other directors considered for the first movie included Robert Rodriguez, Tim Burton, Richard Donner, Brett Ratner (who would later direct 'The Last Stand'), John McTiernan, Danny Boyle, Irvin Kershner and Joel Schumacher.

  • 10

    Neil Patrick Harris auditioned for the role of Nightcrawler in 'X2,' but the role going to Alan Cumming.

  • 11

    Both Michael Jackson and Shaquille O'Neal lobbied for parts in the first X-Men movie.

  • 12

    In the Ultimate Marvel universe, Colossus is gay.

  • 13

    Dr. Hank McCoy/Beast has taken on many forms throughout the series, starting out as a mutant (who looked human) with superhuman strength to a blue and furry feline-like creature.

  • 14

    Beast also has full membership with the Avengers.

  • 15

    Channing Tatum is slated to play Gambit in 'X-Men: Apocalypse,' but he auditioned for the role in 'X-Men: The Last Stand' before the character was cut from the movie.

  • 16

    Storm was the first female African-American superhero. She is also married to the Black Panther.

  • 17

    Beast has an alternate-reality evil version of himself, known as Dark Beast.

  • 18

    Nightcrawler is a devout Catholic.

  • 19

    In his official bio, Wolverine's height is listed at only 5'3".

  • 20

    Cyclops/Scott Summers is quite the womanizer, having dated a lot of women throughout the years, including Lee Forrester, who was also involved with Magneto.

  • 21

    Wolverine was almost called the Badger.

  • 22

    X-Men writer Chuck Austen once theorized that Nightcrawler has two sets of genitalia.

  • 23

    Storm was once given a new punk look, including a mohawk, all the result of a joke gone bad.

  • 24

    Zeitgeist is an X-Force mutant whose superpower is incredibly corrosive acid vomit.

  • 25

    Artist Ethan Van Sciver secretly incorporated the word "sex" into nearly every page of New X-Men No. 118.

More From Kool AM