While Marvel and Disney are making a fortune by tying together their superhero movies with an increasingly complicated chronology, it must be tempting for 20th Century Fox to look at the 'X-Men' movies in a similar way. However, director James Mangold has come out and made it pretty clear that the upcoming 'The Wolverine' will be its own thing, functioning as a standalone film first and foremost.

Speaking with SFX, Mangold addressed fan queries about how Wolverine's latest solo adventure might connect to next year's 'X-Men: Days of Future Past.' Though the director already stated that the film takes place post-'X-Men: The Last Stand' as its own solo story, reports have revealed a post-credits scene connecting 'The Wolverine' to Singer's upcoming installment. If Mangold is to be believed, however, there won't be much of a connection, if any at all:

“Bryan and I have talked and he’s seen what we’ve done. Clearly the reality is that we are all trying to work together and make things groove together. But the trick is we were making our movie before Bryan came on and before I knew what they were up to in that film. Our agenda was always our agenda and our movie stands alone, so the journey we take Logan on in 'The Wolverine,' we bring to a close.”

Based on this statement, it sounds like Mangold is referring to the storyline itself and doesn't necessarily discredit any post-credits scene. We know that 'The Wolverine' has loose ties to 'The Last Stand' and will deal with the fallout of the events featured in that film (specifically the death of Jean Grey), but there is no reason to believe that will tease or tie into 'Days of Future Past' in any way. As Mangold says, his film was already deep into production before Bryan Singer even signed on for the latest 'X-Men' movie. If there are any connections (and the key word there is "if"), they'll probably be inconsequential at best; a particular line of dialogue; a quick post-credits tease.

In any case, the thought of a straightforward superhero movie that won't work overtime to build a larger universe actually feels a little refreshing at this point. 'The Wolverine' opens on July 26, 2013, and it's looking like the key selling point will be its simplicity.