Director Josh Trank and producer Simon Kinberg talk FANTASTIC FOUR – Secrecy, reality and making the Thing work

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Happy Fantastic Foursday people! After being wrapped up tighter than your Christmas presents, the Fantastic Four are pretty much bombarding the public with a massive dose of cosmic info radiation. Hot off the first teaser trailer, Fantastic Four is actually looking like a different kind of hero movie. A movie that really is more sciency, more gritty and kinda cool.

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It’s a trailer that raises just as many questions as it answers, something that director Josh Trank and producer Simon Kinberg were purposefully aware of. “We live in a time where there’s a required instant gratification from audiences,” Trank said to Empire. “That’s a fun challenge in terms of putting together this teaser, picking and choosing how much you’re actually giving away.”

“What we’re doing is quite different, and we want people to get a sense of it,” Kinberg added.

There is a mystery, and the slow immersion into that is part of the experience of what will ultimately be the movie. We wanted it to feel different and represent what’s unique about the film. It has a little more restraint, maybe, than some other trailers these days.

Looking closely at the characters, there’s nary a sign of them adopting their colourful outfits, as their powers are kept within their containment suits. Will we ever see the Fantastic Four suit up in this film or the planned 2017 sequel? Kinberg and Trank were keeping quiet on the matter.  “We want some of that to be a surprise,” Kinberg said.

It is in many ways an origin story, but it’s also about how they react to this transformation, and the ways the world does or doesn’t react to them, which is different, I would say, than all other superhero films.

In the comics, Reed Richards, Ben Grimm, Sue and Johnny Storm got a double whammy of cosmic radiation that gave them their powers. But in keeping with the more grounded science of this flick, Trank is instead taking influence from the Ultimate Fantastic Four comics, which saw our heroes journey into a parallel dimension and gain powers. “Well, I can say this – our characters go to another dimension,” Kinberg explained. “It was something we discussed from our earliest conversations.”

“You can’t have the word ‘fantasy’ or ‘fantastical’ without a contrast,” Trank said of the grounded approach.

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It has to stem from a grounded experience. You can’t have bad without good, you can’t have right without wrong, you can’t have fantastic without mundane. You need to experience all that to really earn the title of the film, ‘Fantastic Four’.

The film isn’t far off, just six months to be exact. It’ll be interesting to see how Fantastic Four stacks up a few months after Avengers: Age Of Ultron releases. Slightly delayed, you can blame Trank’s desire for secrecy on that slipped release date. That, and creating a CGI version of the Thing ain’t easy. “We wanted the visual effects to be as complete as possible,” Kinberg explained.

We know this movie is going to have a little more scrutiny than most, and we wanted to make sure the visuals represented what Josh really pictured for the film. Creating a fully CGI Thing is no easy task!

Last Updated: January 29, 2015

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