Since it was announced that Michael B. Jordan was cast as Johnny Storm a.k.a. The Human Torch in Josh Trank's upcoming Fantastic Four reboot, the project has faced disapproval for casting a black actor in an originally white role.
The last time Jordan responded to the criticism, he seemed assured that detractors would get over their issue with him, saying, "They're still going to see it anyway." In Rome this week for the Italian premiere of Fruitvale Station, he once again took questions regarding the supposedly controversial casting.
First, Jordan addressed the issue of cranky fans who don't like the idea of him playing a character they might have envisioned differently. Said Jordan:
"It was expected, you know? You kinda know going into it that people are used to seeing something one way, it's a continuity thing more than anything. People don't like change too much. But annoyed? Eh, you just kinda accept it, it is what it is. You can't make everybody happy. You just gotta accept that and know.
"I'm an actor, I have to do my job. I'm going to do my job the best I can and the way I've been doing it my entire life, my entire career. I grew up a comic book guy, I read comic books as a kid growing up and the 'Fantastic Four.' Human Torch is one of my favorite characters, so I'm going to give it my everything. I can't wait. I don't really let it bother me at all. I just want to go into it and do the best job I can. We'll see what happens."
Really, it just sounds like Jordan is looking forward to the opportunity to play the role and, like any actor, no doubt embraces the chance to expand his abilities and try something different.
"The Human Torch is, y'know, that's fun. That's going to be a good time. To play a superhero? That's dreams coming true. It's not going to be hard. It's going to be fun to kind of show a side of me that I don't really get a chance to show onscreen, to be a little bit lighter, funnier, just more personality. It's going to be fun."
These are smart comments on Jordan's part; he's clearly not trying to anger any fanboys. If anything, his calm and thoughtful reply shows his respect for the project and is yet another sign that those opposed to his hiring are probably overreacting.
As we've said before, casting a superhero movie these days is about business, and this Fantastic Four reboot seems to be in the business of throwing the widest possible demographic net. If a movie makes radical changes from its source material, it doesn't necessarily mean disaster at the box office. But we'll have to wait another year to find out what it means for Fantastic Four.
Are you looking forward to the Fantastic Four reboot?
Fantastic Four is scheduled to hit theaters March 6, 2015.
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