As the various competing superhero franchises gear up for the next round of 2014 releases - Captain America: The Winter Soldier in April and The Amazing Spider-Man 2 in May - our eyes are also on the various 2015 offerings. One project in particular, Fox's Fantastic Four reboot, has the potential to be a franchise-rejuvenating success.
The first two attempts to bring Marvel's superhero team to the big-screen were famously derided by both fans and critics, which means that Chronicle director Josh Trank and Fox's Marvel Universe guru Simon Kinberg's take on the material has a lot riding on it. They have a fascinating cast lined up so far, with Michael B. Jordan playing Johnny Storm, Kate Mara as Invisible Woman, Jamie Bell as The Thing, and Miles Teller as Reed Richards/Mr. Fantastic.
Aside from some unconfirmed rumors, details on the reboot's story have so far been kept firmly under wraps, but given director Trank's dark, powerful take on what super-human powers can do people in Chronicle, few are expecting something completely light and fluffy. According to X-Men: First Class director Matthew Vaughn, who is serving as a producer on Fantastic Four, this update is very far removed from Fox's first two attempts.
While speaking to Empire Magazine (hat tip to Superhero Movie News), Vaughn went on the record about the film's tone, saying:
"Its a total reboot, that's for sure. It's got nothing to do with the other bloody ones. It's not stretchy guy and a guy running around in rock that looks like it's made of polystyrene. And its not a comedy."
This early effort to distance the reboot from director Tim Story's films is not surprising, and in this age of the "gritty" and "realistic" updates of properties with a history of rather cornball renderings, the more serious approach Vaughn talks about is almost a given.
If we're really getting the X-Men/Fantastic Four crossover teased by Mark Millar, then a far darker take on these characters by Kinberg - who also wrote X-Men: Days of Future Past - makes sense. While we don't know exactly which comic book incarnation of the Four the film will draw from, the ages of the principle cast members point strongly toward the Ultimate Fantastic Four continuity.
As for the "not a comedy" line, it's safe to say no one was really expecting a laugh-fest from Trank and Kinberg, but for Vaughn to underline it like this means that the filmmakers want the public to erase the older films from their memory. Further details on the film's plotline will go a long way toward indicating this, so expect more updates soon, given that production is due to begin this month.
Fantastic Four will open in theaters on June 19, 2015.
Source: Superhero Movie News
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