These days, you don't have to go too far to find someone talking about the Fantastic Four reboot. You open up Twitter and see one tweet on its way to being viral over the fan-casting of an actor you hoped to never see step foot in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. You jump over to Instagram, only to see a fan rendering of what Seth Rogen could look like as The Thing, quickly filing it away right beside the Danny Devito-as-Wolverine pieces. Yet, there's still a hope and wonder bubbling inside of you as you think of what could become of the upcoming Marvel Studios reboot. Hope and wonder, that is, until the dread starts creeping in.
To date, there have been three tries at a franchise featuring Marvel's First Family. There's the never-released attempt by Roger Corman, made only so the late Bernd Eichinger would be able to retain the film rights to the property. Then came 20th Century Fox's painfully-average attempt with Ioan Gruffudd, Jessica Alba, Michael Chiklis, and soon-to-be MCU heartthrob Chris Evans.
That's not to forget Josh Trank's disatrous Fant4stic, which was supposed to become a part of the studio's overarching franchise with the X-Men. What the studio released, however, was panned by virtually all who managed to watch through its 100-minute runtime.
Now comes Marvel Studios, the outfit that's produced the most acclaimed comic book adaptations Hollywood has ever seen. Still, the Kevin Feige-led outfit has an uphill battle in developing the property. This attempt will be the fourth such go at getting the characters to resonate enough with audiences, enough so movie-goers will demand a film franchise. While the studio's track record certainly speaks for itself, it's taking its time to get the filmmakers and cast behind the movie just right.
Rumors have started swirling suggesting Matt Shakman has boarded the property as director, the same filmmaker behind Marvel's Emmy-winning, critically-acclaimed Disney+ hit WandaVision. Should that prove accurate, Shakman's hiring comes nearly two full years after the production was first announced. In fact, the film's already gone through one director—Spider-Man: No Way Home helmer Jon Watts—before landing on the Always Sunny alumnus.
As Shakman's not official, zero serious chatter has been made in regards to the film's expansive cast. At one point, Feige himself told us the movie would likely feature a mixture of well-known actors combined with faces new to Tinsel Town.
Now nearly 30 films and a dozen TV shows into the MCU, Marvel Studios has become a well-oiled machine. Enough so, they're often able to get a project far along in development before an announcement or leak happens. Yet when it comes to the studio's Fantastic Four reboot, studio executives are being cautious—likely because they know this attempt needs to get things right. Should the film bomb like Fant4astic, there's little hope for the characters in the future, even in the Marvel Comics source material given how much the MCU dictates comic sales.
Even if the film finishes in the middle of the pack like Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer, that likely won't be enough. Fans of the characters of long demanded a quality live-action adaptation—enough so, Marvel Studios' Fantastic Four reboot could make or break the studio.
Fantastic Four hits theaters November 8, 2024.
What characters or actors do we you want to see appear in Fantastic Four? Let us know your thoughts either in the comments section or by hitting our writer @AdamBarnhardt up on Twitter to chat all things MCU!