I actually liked last year’s Fantastic Four reboot. Well, I like the first half, which is actually a pretty polished little bit of sci-fi. But – and you knew there was a but coming – it was totally not a Fantastic Four movie. Let me explain: I have no problem in making changes to a property when adapting it for the big screen, but don’t change the core tenets of what that property is, otherwise you may as well just go make up an original movie. And in the comics the Fantastic Four’s core tenet has always been that they are a family of scientific explorers, challengers of the unknown, who go off on wild sci-fi adventures which are almost always a whole lot of fun.
And while I can see and appreciate the interesting body-horror sci-fi angle that director Josh Trank wanted to take with Fantastic Four, very little of what made the characters so successful and beloved for decades actually made it to screen. And writer/producer Simon Kinberg, speaking to Den of Geek, admits that that approach was a mistake which led to a deeply flawed movie.
“We didn’t make a good movie, and the world voted, and I think they probably voted correctly. And you can’t make a good movie every time out – not everybody does. We actually have a pretty good batting average, all things considered. But I think we made many mistakes when we made that movie – mistakes that we learned from and we wouldn’t repeat.”
The first – and most snarky – response to that would be “Damn right, you won’t repeat it. Because there won’t be another movie! Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha…..er,” but it seems that despite the originally planned Fantastic Four sequel having been removed from Fox’s release scheduled, Kinberg and co over are still eager to try and get this right. Especially since they already had an awesome cast in place.
“We want to make another ‘Fantastic Four’ movie. We love that cast – I mean if I were to say to you now Michael B Jordan and Miles Teller, and Kate [Mara] and Jamie [Bell] are great actors – we love that cast. I love the comic, I mean I love it almost as much as X-Men. We’re working really hard on figuring that out. Nothing would make me happier than the world embracing a ‘Fantastic Four’ movie.”
But if given the chance – which is actually unlikely considering the film’s bomb at the box office, bringing in only $168 million on a $120 million budget – what would they do differently on a Fantastic Four sequel?
“We’ll try to be truer to the essence of the tone of Fantastic Four, which is completely – well, not completely, but largely – distinct from the X-Men, which is brighter, funner, more optimistic tone. I think we tried to make a darker ‘Fantastic Four’ movie, which seemed like a radical idea but we were kind of messing with the DNA of the actual comic instead of trusting the DNA of the comic.”
Yeah, I could have told you that. In fact, I did in the opening paragraph of this very article! Jokes aside though, I really want them to take another crack at this just because the potential for a great Fantastic Four movie is so clear to see. The previous movies veered far too heavily in the cheesy direction and this latest attempt just went extreme in the opposite direction, but the answer is somewhere in the middle. They already had some great ideas in an early draft of the script, and decided to not use them. But bring in some of those elements (I would sell Nick’s body online to get a movie Galactus done right) and give this to a director like Matthew Vaughn, who showed just how successfully you can do bright, loud and fun comic book stories in X-Men: First Class and Stardust, and it could just be… well, fantastic.
Last Updated: May 18, 2016