Fox has seen considerable success bringing the X-Men franchise to the big screen, from ensemble pictures such as the upcoming X-Men: Apocalypse to the surprise success of Deadpool‘s solo outing. It is easy to forget, then, that the studio has faced repeated failures to adapt another Marvel franchise to the big screen: the Fantastic Four.
After two critically panned Fantastic Four movies in 2005 and 2007, Fox tried to redeem the franchise in 2015 with a rebooted Fantastic Four featuring a new cast and a reworked origin story. The result, however, was an even bigger disaster, with the movie becoming the worst-reviewed Marvel movie of all time and utterly bombing at the box office. With that in mind, the movie was not likely to earn any awards… except for one.
Last month, the list of nominees for the annual Razzie awards was announced, and Fantastic Four made the list in several categories. Now the final winners have been announced, and Deadline reports that Fantastic Four came out on top (or the bottom, as it were), sharing the Worst Picture award with Fifty Shades of Grey. The movie also earned Razzies for “Worst Remake, Rip-off or Sequel” and Worst Director for Josh Trank, despite his previous protests that his version of the movie would have been much better.
The three Razzies come as yet another black eye for the movie, and probably another nail in the coffin for any near-future followups. Even though Michael B. Jordan has said he would be happy to return as the Human Torch, he is just about the only person who has expressed an interest in returning to the franchise. While the reboot effort came as an attempt by Fox to hang onto the Fantastic Four movie rights, three failures in a row might just convince them to let the rights lapse this time, or at least get Marvel involved like Sony did for its beleaguered Spider-Man franchise.
One can argue the merits of the Razzie awards kicking a movie when it’s down, but it is unlikely that many would argue that Fantastic Four did not deserve it. That it had to share the Worst Picture award with the tepid, softcore BDSM flick Fifty Shades of Gray is just one more indignity on a pile of indignities for the movie. Hopefully if Marvel’s First Family ever makes it back to the big screen, it will finally be in a form that is not thoroughly embarrassing to all involved.