It will be elbow-room only for superheroes next summer after Fox confirmed that Matthew Vaughn would direct the prequel saga X-Men: First Class and set the release for June 3, 2011.

Production is scheduled to begin this summer in time for that release date, which falls one week after Paramount is scheduled to release Mission: Impossible IV and the same weekend as DreamWorks Animation’s Kung Fu Panda: The Kaboom Of Doom through Paramount.

Furthermore Warner Bros has already claimed the June 17 weekend for its 3D Green Lantern release. Marvel’s Thor will launch through Paramount on May 6, and the distributor will open The First Avenger: Captain America on July 22

Bryan Singer, who conceived the story for First Class and directed X-Men and X2, is producing along with Lauren Shuler Donner and Simon Kinberg. Vaughn recently directed Kick-Ass. The story is mined from the Marvel Comics universe and charts the early friendship between Charles Xavier and Erik Lensherr, aka Magneto, before they became bitter rivals.

“I’ve been a fan of Matthew’s since Layer Cake,” Singer said. “He has a deft hand with multiple characters and storylines, and a great love of the X-Men universe.”

Twentieth Century Fox president of production Emma Watts added: “X-Men: First Class presents an exciting opportunity to further explore the history and relationships of these beloved characters. Matthew’s combination of talent, verve and vision is perfectly suited to the task.”