Despite (or maybe because of) a pair of still-ridiculed move adaptations a decade earlier, the upcoming Fantastic Four reboot faced an uphill battle almost from the start. The film received lashing from fans for skewing younger with the lead roles, as well changing the dynamic between Sue and Johnny Storm.
The film from Chronicle director Josh Trank operated under a cloak of mystery until just a few months ago, with rumors of reshoots and the messy state of the production suddenly squelched in the wake of the first trailer’s release and the various images and spots we’ve seen since.
Still, rumors circulated that Trank’s behavior during the F4 shoot led to his loss of the high-profile gig directing the second Star Wars Anthology (standalone) film, which seem to have dovetailed into new reports – via Superhero News and CBM – that Kingsman: The Secret Service helmer Matthew Vaughn took the lead on reshoots which were said to have taken place in April.
According to Superhero News, 20th Century Fox’s plans for a 3D release were changed, as the studio “axed the 3D release in favor of utilizing that budget for additional reshoots to help improve the story.” The stories were met with an almost immediate response from Josh Trank himself, who reached out to both outlets via Twitter. See Trank’s tweets below:
@Josh_Wilding Hey Josh, not true. While MV has been very supportive, he's never been to our set. There's only been 1 director of FF2015. Me.— Josh Trank (@joshuatrank) May 24, 2015
@SuperheroNewsCB Definitely not true. I haven't even met MV in person, and there were no such test screenings.— Josh Trank (@joshuatrank) May 24, 2015
While Fantastic Four writer-producer Simon Kinberg did confirm “3-4 additional days” of reshoots back in January – though he didn’t specify when they would take place – when faced with reports like this, there is really no other response that Trank could have given. Fox’s F4 marketing machine still has another several months to go until the film’s release, and is still trying to win over fans who have yet to fully embrace the reboot’s direction and tone.
Given the critical and commercial success of Kingsman (also a Fox movie), it’s definitely possible that the studio could have brought in Vaughn as an adviser on such reshoots, and if the harsher tales of Trank’s “erratic” on-set behavior were at all accurate, it’s not impossible that Vaughn was put in control… but it’s unlikely.
With the truth about any rumors for such a high-profile project usually falling somewhere in the middle of exaggeration and speculation, what is more likely is Fox gave Trank a specific set of creative directions for the reshoots – which may or may not have included advice from Vaughn – but kept Trank on as director.
Expect the details of the day-to-day production to be kept as secret as Fantastic Four‘s overall plot, but the fan and critical reception of the movie will either render these rumors and anxieties moot or validate them completely. As always, we’ll have to wait and see.
Fantastic Four opens August 7th, 2015, Deadpool on February 12th, 2016, X-Men: Apocalypse on May 27th, 2016, Gambit on October 7th, 2016, Wolverine 3 (not the official title) on March 3rd, 2017, Fantastic Four 2 on June 9th, 2017, and some as-yet unspecified X-Men film on July 13th, 2018.