It's the film that Marvel fans have either been anticipating or/and dreading for years. Now the release of 20th Century Fox and director Josh Trank's Fantastic Four is right around the corner, with decidedly under-whelming word of mouth spreading ahead of its theatrical bow.
One of the most curious elements of the new film is its depiction of Doctor Doom, a character often considered one of the most powerful super-villains in the Marvel universe. Toby Kebbell (Dawn of the Planet of the Apes) is the man bringing Doom to life this time around, and Trank's movie has earned a fair amount of controversy for the liberties it takes with the character's origin story, including a previously-reported name change to Victor Domashev.
Collider interview Kebbell ahead of Fantastic Four's theatrical debut, where the topic of Victor von Doom's name (which has been restored) and why it changed (again) for the film. As Kebbell put it:
"I think the fans heard that and said, 'It’s got to be Doom!' They knew that."
As some have speculated, the fan response to Kebbell's own mention of his character's altered origin was instrumental in his return to a more comics-influenced version. Moreover, the actor reveals that the mystery surrounding Fantastic Four's villain may be more complicated than it seems.
"I feel like this is already a Doombot, but I can’t say that. Maybe it was already a Doombot. Maybe it wasn’t even me. Maybe I’m still there."
On that note, check out some newly-unveiled Fantastic Four poster artwork, which highlights Kebbell's version of Doom:
Regardless of what the film and its announced sequel have in store for Doom, the character is no doubt a big part of Fox's plans for the franchise going forward. He's one of the marquee Marvel villains, even though many comic book fans have been left unsatisfied by his big-screen presence thus far. In keeping with Doom's significance to the series, Fox released the above poster, depicting the fully-powered Doom in all his glory.
Kebbell has voiced his desire to see the character square off against the Avengers down the line; while a collaboration between Marvel Studios and Fox won't necessarily happen anytime soon, it's clear that Fox is paying close attention to fan response to the new Fantastic Four. Depending on how well the film performs at the box office (and with the general public), the fate of that much-talked-about Fantastic Four and X-Men crossover may hang in the balance.
Fantastic Four opens in theaters on August 7, 2015, followed by Deadpool on February 12, 2016; X-Men: Apocalypse on May 27, 2016; Gambit on October 7, 2016; Wolverine 3 on March 3, 2017; Fantastic Four 2 on June 9, 2017; and some as-yet unspecified X-Men film on July 13, 2018. The New Mutants is also in development.