‘Fantastic Four’: Miles Teller & Michael B. Jordan ‘Deserve’ Roles

Published 7 months ago by , Updated June 25th, 2014 at 10:51 am,

Ultimate Fantastic Four Movie Cast 2015 Fantastic Four: Miles Teller & Michael B. Jordan Deserve Roles

Chronicle director Josh Trank is currently behind-the-scenes preparing for his relaunch of Fox’s Fantastic Four franchise, while fans hold their breath on the sidelines, worried that Marvel’s favorite family is once again going to get shortchanged by their movie adaptation.

At the moment there seems to be a holding pattern; word is Trank and producers are testing different combinations of actors to find that perfect camaraderie needed to create the familial banter and excellent team dynamic that are the cornerstone of any Fantastic Four story. However, after hearing the list of rumored actors up for the main four slots, the core fanbase has been less than enthused about where this is all headed – and some rumored plot details haven’t helped matters.

Actors like Girls star Allison Williams and 1600 Penn star Josh Gad have had their names floated for roles like Invisible Girl and The Thing; however, most of the Fantastic Four casting rumors have focused on Reed Richards and The Human Torch, with up-and-coming actors Miles Teller (Spectacular Now) and Michael B. Jordan (Fruitvale Station) being the two names long attached to the respective characters.

Jordan in particular has been the subject of long discussion; the actor worked with Trank (and impressed fans) in Chronicle, but having an African-American actor step into the role of Johnny Storm presents logistical challenges (his relation to a white Sue Storm), as well as the usual “race-switching” complaints. 

Zac Efron Endorses Michael B. Jordan and Miles Teller Fantastic Four Fantastic Four: Miles Teller & Michael B. Jordan Deserve Roles

Teller, Efron and Jordan in ‘That Awkward Moment’

Well, as luck would have it Teller and Jordan are starring in a movie together, That Awkward Momentin which their banter and camaraderie are (if nothing else) a good indication of how they would fit together within a Fantastic Four ensemble. Also starring in That Awkward Moment is Zac Efron – and although Teller and Jordan were tight-lipped about the current FF4 casting process, Efron was free to let his view of the matter be known, after I joked that he could join them in the cast as The Thing:

Zac Efron: “Bottom Line: These guys are good enough and in a position where they deserve that kind of role. I dunno… I have to kind of earn it a little more to be in a movie like that. It’s just different. I think these guys are fresh and brand new – I think these guys would be great in that film. I don’t belong in a film like that, not at all, no way.”

We’ll skip over the easy-opening for fans to rip into a Zac Efron Fantastic Four casting (pretty sure the comments section will have fun with that one) and instead focus on the actual endorsement of Miles Teller and Michael B. Jordan starring in the film.

Awkward Moment Efron Teller Jordan Fantastic Four: Miles Teller & Michael B. Jordan Deserve Roles

The two young men are both proven as prestige and commercial talents (Teller in Spectacular Now and 21 & Over; Jordan in Chronicle and Fruitvale Station) and in That Awkward Moment they do exhibit good chemistry and banter – but of course, the issue goes deeper than that. Iconic comic book characters demand a certain (but variable) level of fidelity to the source material, and an actor  must embody certain essential characteristics that define the character, in charisma or spirit if not physical resemblance.

In that sense it’s easy to see why many people have been okay with the thought of Jordan playing the Torch; as seen in Chronicle, the actor has a likable swagger that could make for a convincing ladies man – while films like Fruitvale have shown he has the ability to convincingly exude the sort of attitude and (forgive me) hot-headedness that puts the “Storm” in Johnny Storm. The revised back story and obvious potential for incredibly racist jokes would be a downside, admittedly.

Fantastic Four Future Foundation Costumes 570x397 Fantastic Four: Miles Teller & Michael B. Jordan Deserve Roles

Fantastic Four – Future Foundation Costumes

Teller is something of a harder sell. A lot people find the actor’s whip-smart wit and banter in films like 21 & Over to be bothersome – and a good number of them are probably ignorant of his more subtle, layered (and generally impressive) work in Spectacular Now, one of last year’s indie darlings. That’s all to say: It’s already hard to imagine the younger version of Reed Richards (as featured in the Ultimate Fantastic Four continuity); the majority of fans will likely have little frame of reference to imagine Teller’s trademark wit supplanting their memories of the aloof and square-minded Reed Richards from the classic comics.

If storyline rumors are true –  a revised origin involving young super-powered types being utilized as government weapons – then this Fantastic Four reboot is striking out in a bold new direction, one that will be an uphill battle, for sure. While casting is always a touchy subject in the initial stages, for a project like FF4 it seems like a slow-build into the graces of audiences will be the key – and that requires sustained charisma. Based on what we’ve seen from That Awkward Moment, Teller and Jordan (together or individually) can offer that.

That Awkward Moment is in theaters on January 31, 2014.

Fantastic Four will be in theaters on June 19, 2015. Stay tuned for details on casting.

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TAGS: fantastic four, that awkward moment

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  1. Thanks for weighing in Zac… said no one.

    • Ha! Be nice. He was very humble about it. Took my Thing joke pretty well.

      • Thanks for weighing in Zac.

        See, said someone.

    • Who is Sack Efron anyways? Another young teen idol?

  2. Since there is such camaraderie between the two, what about for the roles of Ben Grimm for Jordan and Richards for Teller?

    Just a crazy thought

  3. Ummmm…how about No.

  4. You people at Screen Rant are like recruitment agents. You did it with the Batfleck and now you continually do it with this guy Jordan. I hope he gives you a percentage of his salary should he get the part. This movie is going to be the next Green Hornet. Hopefully they will blow it big time so they don’t share screen time with the X Men.

    To Effron; Shut up and keep on with your crappy films.

    • Yeah! How dare Screenrant not have the same opinions about these casting choices as you!

    • I believe the movie will be a massive bomb just like the last Ghost rider movie. Mass audiences just don’t care about the FF.

    • I thought of the Seth Rogan travesty that besmirched the good name of The Green Hornet as well (the 60s series was classic), and also of the Depp/Burton mess that besmirched the good name of the Dark Shadows series (the original 60s/70s one was classic as well). About the only reboot that i saw that was any good was The Three Stooges, which actually was not too bad. Now the FF is getting the tar and feathers treatment. I shudder to think what will be the fate of poor and honorable Doc Savage….! (Anyone heard any updates on Doc, by the way? Shane Black was scheduled to do that one, but I am very nervous after he helped mess up IM#3).

  5. What about Ryan Reynolds as the Human Torch because the guy has that humor needed to pull off the role…..LOL

    • Don’t even joke about things like that; Reynolds has ruined enough superheroes for one lifetime.

      • How?

        His Hannibal King was the best thing about Blade: Trinity.

        His Wade Wilson was great until the writers screwed with Deadpool at the end.

        His Hal Jordan was great but the rest of the movie was poorly written.

        I’d say as an actor, Reynolds has knocked it out of the park every time, despite the fact the writing was crap but strangely isn’t blamed. It’s like Reynolds personally kicked people’s pets so they hate everything he does, even when it’s not his fault.

        • Agree with you there Dazz. I like Reynolds as an actor, but he’s in terrible movies. Despite me not liking Green Lantern isn’t because of Reynolds, it’s the script and poorly done villain (Parallax). I think the cast of Green Lantern is spot on. Mark Strong as Sinestro? Come on, that was brilliant!

          • Green Lantern the movie was not all that bad. The judgement of overly-critical band-wagon-jumping harpies, shrews, and jaw-jackers was. The writing was bad. The humor was bad. The plot needed a bit of improvement, yes. But the movie itself was the only GL we have, and was not that bad overall. We need GL#2, and we do not need people griping so long and loud we scare the studios away (like cost us the GL#2 movie, at first The Flash movie, a second sesason of The Event, etc.).
            Luv y’all, but shut your bloomin’ trappers!!!!!!

        • I will try not to make a habit of this but…..yes, yes and yes! (and Strong was great as Sinestro)

          Reynolds needs to get a better agent so they can stop steering him towards turkeys.

        • +1
          Yup! Totally agree. The writing of all the comic book films he’s been apart of have been downright awful with barely any good direction, yet he’s constantly done well in his roles. Get him in a movie with a good script and director and you’ve got something special. I mean look at Buried, the man carried a whole film by himself and not once did I check my watch to see when the movie would over. He’s got presence on screen, just give the guy a chance with a project that isn’t doomed from the get-go.

        • W/ Reynolds you might as well call all his roles as superheroes Hannibal Wade Jordan because all of them coming from him were pretty much the same.

  6. I have to ask, why do people hate on Efron? While I’m not a fan of the guy, I think he’s a very solid actor. Either way, I agree wholeheartedly with what he’s saying and I’m glad he said it. Michael B. Jordan (specifically) and Miles Teller are great actors, rising stars and have the potential to be huge.

    • Because of his previous role in the high school musical movies. He’s a pretty decent actor now, but many people won’t admit it because they don’t want to believe that. It’s the same thing for Channing Tatum (who’s been on a roll the last couple of years) and Ben Affleck.

    • I can’t really explain it either and I’m one of them. Everytime I see that photo above of him holding his coffee with the other two guys, I want to punch him in his face.

  7. I don’t really care how good their camaraderie is. They can even be great actors to boot. It doesn’t matter because they don’t fit the roles.

    • They fit as much in these roles as Benedict Cumberbatch fits in as Doctor Strange

      • IE: Not at all.

  8. I am unsure of this for several reasons, including the fact that Teller looks so young and kiddish (when will we ever get mature Reed on screen?) but I can imagine that these guys could work out great with the right story and direction.

    If this film does turn out to be excellent, a lot of people here and elsewhere will be in a bit of an awkward place.

    • Not at all. The film can turn out to be excellent (I seriously doubt about it) but I still will keep thinking that is miscasted. Maybe it´s a good movie, but it will be a good movie with a versión of the characters that are not the ones I want to see in a movie. Maybe it´s a good movie, but for sure it is not to be a good movie about the Fantastic Four.

    • That’s right. Not all heroes need to be diaper-wrinkling, “what’s happnin’ dudes” League age. Some heroes in the comics did quite well being a bit mature, Reed Richards and Dr. Strange among them…and each had a tiny touch of premature grey early on. And remember how someone wanted to do JLA at one time with young actors? They might as well have done the early Legion of Super-Heroes instead. How about the First Class X-Men? No one would even remember who half the characters were if they walked in the door and zapped you in the face with their super-powers! You would just pick your gut-pile up off the floor and say, “Who–is this roodie-poo?!”. Some of the younger heroes are so young, like the new peter Parker and some X-men characters, they would only be able to defeat baddies by squirting them with their baby-bottles.

  9. As a long time fan of the original comics I have to say that I’m not thrilled with how this film is shaping up. I suffered through the first two FF movies and though they weren’t terrible movies they were terrible FF movies. The new film, if the plot remains the same, will apparently follow an even more UN-Fantastic Four formula that reminds me of what happened with a re-imagined Godzilla movie back in 1998. If the film had been called “The Monster from the Deep” I would have chalked it up as another generic giant monster movie but they had to call it Godzilla which ensures that fans of the original property will be disenfranchised from the outset. That’s what is happening with the reboot of the FF. For heaven’s sake call the movie anything but Fantastic Four and we’ll all watch it if its any good. Stay on this path and disaster looms ahead for all involved.
    Problem is Josh Trank and Fox would never listen to what I have to say on the matter.

    • “Problem is Josh Trank and Fox would never listen to what I have to say on the matter.”

      You’ve got a pretty high opinion about yourself, don’t you? I’d rather trust a great director like Josh Trank.

      • Not to mention people complain about this not being FF-like while forgetting the Ultimate versions that were in their early 20s so this casting and rumoured plot fits right into that and allows for more than just two FF movies as long as box office bank is enough to warrant more.

        I may not have heard of Gad, Teller or the woman lined up (allegedly) as Sue and I’ve only ever seen Jordan in Chronicle and would’ve preferred a 616 FF with Billy Burke as Reed but still, you can’t deny that the potential is here.

        I just find it ironic and hilarious that people complain about the casting in this movie and Batman/Superman while lapping up the Disney/Marvel casting choices with positivity instead of having the same levels of cautious optimism for all properties rather than outright disdain.

        Besides, you won’t know if the casting is right or if the movie will be good or bad until they release a trailer and you see the action sequences and chemistry between actors.

        • Whatever age Reed is in any version, Johnny is always eight to ten years younger. Ben and reed went to college together with Doom. Johnny is Sue’s lil brother.

          I think having a younger Reed could work, but I just don’t see how Reed and Johnny being buddies who are the same age is at all like the comics.

      • lol “great director” he’s only done TWO films! Big Fan (which I enjoyed), and he’s done Chronicle (which I also enjoyed) but I wouldn’t go as far as to say he’s a “GREAT” director. He’s a GOOD director, knows what he’s doing. but with this casting choice, a Young F4? mehhhhhhhhh.

        It makes me upset/fustrated because of the simple fact that McAvoy and Fassbender are in their mid 30s, and they’ll have the hold the weight of these mid 20s actors. It would, and will be, a big mess…..

        I just don’t see them gelling well as a cast / the film as whole with such a young cast.

        • Again, did you not read Ultimate FF, where the main characters were in their early to mid 20s?

          Blame Mark Millar and Brian Michael Bendis for creating that version of them, not Trank for casting them in a movie based on those books, despite the fact the books were well received for the most part and Trank isn’t even in charge of casting anyway.

      • Calling Trank a great director is a bit premature. It’s like calling Mr. Shamma-lamma-bing-bong a “great” director after 6th Sense and look where he is now.

        I only saw Chronicle, and while it did have its moments, I found it to be pretty predictable and cliche in the end.

      • Since I’m not a tween I don’t view the fairly recent Ultimates spin-off comic the same way someone being introduced to the characters for the first time would. I’m not old enough to have read the first issues back in the 60s but I’ve collected and read many of them and I’m much more familiar with the FF the way they appear for most of the 50+ years the comics have been around so that’s naturally the version of the characters I’d most like to see. I suppose you could argue that they already tried it my way back in 2005 and screwed it up and its time for something fresh which I’d have a hard time arguing against.

        I don’t have a high opinion of myself I just have an opinion.

        I am a fan of Chronicle and I think Josh Trank is a great director. I’m just disappointed that the version of the FF Fox has chosen to portray isn’t what I was hoping for. I’ll get over it.

    • “Wouldn’t listen to the fact that I was genius,
      They say they got all that they can use,
      So I got those steadily-depressing, low-down, mind-messin’
      Reading on the Screen Rant Blues!”

  10. I really think Michael B. Jordan would be excellent as the Human Torch. He has the charisma for it for sure.

  11. If they cast both of them the movie is doomed. I’ve expressed my thoughts against changing the race of characters “just because” before and how it’s very wrong, but I still think Jordan would be good if he absolutely had to be in because he’s a good actor and can actually pull Johnny’s character well. Now Teller just looks like a complete miscast. He has nothing on Reed, absolutely nothing.

  12. So you have to be friends with the director to get a part in this “film”. Mess, destruction is what I see on this project.

    Above all, do we have to take into consideration the comments of an “actor” whose greatest role has been to be a dancer in a crappy Disney film? Come on, give me a break!

    Has the level of talent fallen that much?

  13. Love how Michael Jordan says that if you look at Zac’s face, you can’t see him as the Thing.

    Wow. Michael B Jordan is going to judge whether somebody can play a comic book character because they don’t look the part? Huh. Really.

  14. The original FF movies got way too much flak from people, sure they copped out with galactus but they put two of the seminal silver surfer stories into film and it wasn’t half bad, we got the fantasticar. Doom was mishandled but other than that the movies had a lot of good qualities, the quirks of the old Lee/Kirby golden era books. This new movies doesn’t have me interested in anyway. The casting choices seem off, a black torch is just stupid, nick fury works because of the Ultimate series. Pandering to demographics and having ethnic diversity just for the sake of ethnic diversity is in my opinion just condescending. But I hope I’ll be wrong and this movie will prove itself in the cinemas.

  15. What has become amusing about this is how the divisive casting surrounding this Fantastic Four project is that it has generated more attention for the concept as a whole then any of the previous comic books or movies have ever garnered. The amount of comic book fans who care about the Fantastic Four at this point are a percentage of the already relatively small cross section of overall comic fans who make up movie ticket buyers. The added schism between fans of the original run of the books and readers more familiar with the Ultimate’s version or whatever newer version Marvel has done in the past 20 years makes trying to appease the comic fans even trickier.

    • @Slayer

      Yeah that’s the dirty secret with all this Wonder Woman and Fantastic Four casting “controversy.”

      So few people read these comics these days. So modern FF movies marketing to comics is not that sure of a good thing…

      • Well there is no such things as bad press as the saying goes, but in the case of some of these discussions it has bought out some of the more ugly traits of people that one would hope was not a big part of this genres fan-base, but clearly it takes all types to be fans of anything.

        As a former comic book reader in the 80′s and 90′s and a Black man I really do not take much offense in the race issue surrounding Johnny Storm until it starts to get into ridiculous leaps by comparing changes of race in media depicting living people. That just comes off as uneducated and childish, but the constant arguments about comic characters being changed is something that is so old and common that it is not a big shock.

        I can recall the amount of hysteria among fans boys when Steve Rogers was replaced as Captain America, Superman was seemingly killed and they ran with all of the knock-offs and the whole Azreal as Batman gimmick. One of the reasons comic books go through these radical boom and bust periods as far as sales and popularity is the fact that part of their appeal becomes a certain familiarity that in turn stunts the growth of the medium overall. What then happens is that fans start to move away from the scene over time and the need to replace those fans/customers facilitates the need to start from scratch lately.

        Old school fans of the original Fantastic Four run who want a more “accurate” portrayal of the team seem to gloss over the revelation in the X-Men vs. FF mini-series that Reed Richards purposely exposed the team to Cosmic Rays, thus granting them their powers and actually creating some of the most interesting stories and tension in the title back then. There have also been other members of the team like She-Hulk and Luke Cage (who they cannot use) and there was even a storyline where the whole team was kidnapped and replaced by four characters who were way more popular at the time in Spider-Man, Hulk, Wolverine and Ghost Rider.

        So in reality this movie is just a studio placing a contemporary face on a semi-recognizable name to try and sell more tickets. But at the end of the day it is looking and sounding like Chronicle with a Marvel property placed on top of it. And as much as fans rail against these changes if they are honest they would realize that most of the comic books movies that have come out during this boom period are generic in tone and theme and just have familiar names on them to sell easier.

        • I just hate when Fantasy-Football players switch to Fantasy-Comics and rewrite canon. They remind me of the people who try to rewrite history by saying, for instance, “The Holocaust never happened because I say so”; “The United States, Israel, and Great Britain are the Great Satans”, etc. etc. etc. When movies are made solely on attitudes like that, they probably make a pretty lumpy bed to lay in when they fail.

  16. i like the actor Michael B. Jordan but i do not see him as johnny storm in the fantastic 4 movie, how can they explain why sue is white and her brother is black, stick to the comic books if the carecter is not black in the comic book then dont make him black in the movies, there are lots of good actors for this movie.

    • “how can they explain why sue is white and her brother is black”

      #1 Either Johnny and/or Sue are adopted. Not ever canon, but things change.
      #2 Johnny and Sue are step-siblings. Only change would be that Dr. Storm remarries after his wife dies and the Storms are step-siblings. His wife dying is canon as far as I know.
      #3 The Storms are a black family. Dr.Storm becomes a more tragic version of Cliff Huxtable.

  17. I know I’m not alone in this opinion. I will be completely behind casting Jordan as Johnny Storm if and only if they cast Sue as black as well.

    But they won’t.

    Because there’s no artistic choice here. It’s solely about catering to the demographic. It feels entirely like they want to put a black actor into a prominent role in the film, and that they went down the list and decides Johnny was the only one they could cast that way.

    You can’t cast Mr. Fantastic as black, he’s the lead! Everyone knows the star has to be white! You can’t cast Sue as a black, she’s the only woman! How will we attract white 20-something males if she’s not a porcelain blonde? You can’t cast Thing as black, that’ll just cause backlash over the fact that he immediately turns into an orange rock-monster!

    Jordan is a fine actor. And I honestly, truly believe he would be a great Johnny Storm. I just hate the idea that they’re intentionally breaking the connection he has with Sue. And yes, despite what you might think, making one of them adopted DOES change that connection, because you have to acknowledge it.

    So cast Sue as black, too. It’s such an easy fix, and there’s plenty of young black women would could play the role just as well as a young white one. But that’s a change that the suits at Fox will not back, because they’re not in it for artistic integrity; they’re only in it for ratings, and historically, you need a white male lead with a white love interest. Fox doesn’t want a white Reed Richards paired up with a black Sue Storm.

    I know this comes off sounding like a rant, and I guess it is, but I still feel very strongly about this. If you decide to cast Jordan as Johnny, you have to accept the fact that this is going to affect the way you cast other characters in the movie. You can’t cast Johnny and Sue in a vacuum. They’re siblings, and that’s an integral part of their characters, and it needs to stay that way.

    • You are on ScreenRANT…..so I think if anywhere, ranting here is ok ;)

    • Agreed. The Storms as a black family will upset some, but who cares. It would also make the Invisible Woman way more interesting if the film is written well.

      If they stick with Jordan then they should drop Teller and get someone in their early 30′s/late 20′s. Someone older than Jordan/Johnny Storm.

      • It’s only Johnny that’s black. Not Sue. That’s what’s weird. And, no, adoption is just dumb.

    • I am not slamming Jordan, or blacks, at all, but frankly, I don’t think anyone other than a black was considered for the role, and if Jordan was white, the attitude of the writers is such that he probably would not considered for the role.

  18. Luckily I never got my hopes up about this movie once Trank was attached to it. I have no desire to go see this version in the theaters.

  19. That’s because Zac Efron looks nothing like someone who should play the Thing it makes perfect sense actually…anyway I’m pretty sure in the Ultimate comics(may be wrong) the Fantastic Four were pretty young which is not even that much of a big deal to me until I see the film.If they are going to be younger i think they can gel easier with the X-men, maybe even joining the school(I doubt but would be pretty neat)

  20. I’m a marvel fan.
    but think I’ll wait this one till its on cable.

  21. I understand why people are getting upset over changing a characters race/origins (personally, it doesn’t bother me if Jordan is cast at all) but at the end of the day, no matter what your skin colour is….

    Everyone looks the same when they’re on fire.

  22. It’ll suck just like all of Fox’s other Marvel movies. They just don’t know what they’re doing

  23. I don’t know about anyone “deserving” a role, but we the fanboys and fangirls, some of whom have been the most ardent supporters of a Marvel FF effort and loyal readers (in my case from issue #1), “deserve” a real, true-to-canon FF movie. I sure don’t see one materializing from what I have heard.

  24. I don’t care if Teller and Jordan are the most excellent actors in the world (and for all I know, since I am not familiar really with either of them), they are not Reed Richards and Johnny Storm. And that makes all the difference. If those making this movie cannot see that, then they need to drop the idea of doing such a movie altogether, and that lost opportunity would make me sad. But the way they are going is a recipe for failure…are they such poor ring-generals that they do not see that?

  25. In all honestly as long as Dr Doom is portrayed correctly. Doom is the best marvel villain in my opinion. C’mon the guy took over the world in the comics and gave it up because he got bored… Failure is beneath Doom!

  26. I only know a few black people that are into comics and they hate the Michael B Jordan casting worse than I do. It just doesn’t make sense. So why do it? Jeez.

  27. Why are any of these actors being considered at all? That kid with the big nose is goofy looking but not in the Reed Richards kind of way and I don’t want to see Effron or Jordan as the Human Torch. I find them both rather annoying in the movies I’ve seen.

  28. Where is the Eskimo super hero??? How dare they leave out this ethic group I thought of 10 seconds ago!!!

  29. I get this feeling that casting (or miscasting) is going to be the least of the problems this Fantastic Four reboot is going to have.

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