So far, 2015 has been a record-breaking year for blockbusters, and it's not even July yet. We're just shy of a month out from the release of 20th Century Fox's Fantastic Four reboot, and after keeping the film under wraps for so long, the studio has unleashed the marketing beast - whether you like it or not.
Directed by Chronicle helmer Josh Trank, Fantastic Four faced an uphill battle which in a sense really began when 2007's Fantastic 4: Rise of the Silver Surfer opened and convinced fans of the comic books that a movie franchise should remain dead and buried. However, after the reboot's first trailer took many by surprise, a wave of TV spots and featurettes followed. Now, you can watch a new one above.
While some of the earlier spots and trailers played up the movie's darker tone and the infighting which likely occurs early on after Reed Richards (Miles Teller), Sue Storm (Kate Mara), Johnny Storm (Michael B. Jordan) and Ben Grimm (Jamie Bell) travel to a parallel dimension (the Negative Zone?) and return with distinct super powers, the tone of the spots shifted to highlight the four working as a team.
While the most recent TV spot injected some humor into the familiar visual effects sizzle reel, this new one positions the "next generation of heroes" as a group of misfits, a distinction which echoes many of the themes of Fox's other Marvel property X-Men. Factoring in F4's similarities to the X-Men movies' costumes and visual aesthetic - and that long-rumored crossover between the two franchises - Fox is clearly pushing the reboot's marketing in a very X-Men direction, likely to draw in as many X-fans as possible.
While this new spot gives us a few frames of new footage here and there, we've already seen much of this before - a given for 30 to 60-second TV spots for these kinds of tentpole movies. This new look is notable mostly for its reframing of the heroes as outcasts in the vein of X-Men and the continued cloak of mystery surrounding the Four's iconic arch-nemesis, Dr. Doom (Toby Kebbell).
Fox has a month and change left to sway undecided fans, and taking the "it's like X-Men!" route may be the most obvious way to rope in the audiences who helped return that franchise to its former luster by flocking to Days of Future Past. But with so much of the plot left unrevealed (which is probably the wisest move), word-of-mouth will end up deciding the fate of the Fantastic Four. Should Fox start opening up more of the film's mysteries?
Fantastic Four opens on August 7, 2015; Deadpool on February 12, 2016; X-Men: Apocalypse on May 27, 2016; Gambit on October 7, 2016; Wolverine 3 (not the official title) on March 3, 2017;Fantastic Four 2 on June 9, 2017; and some as-yet unspecified X-Men film on July 13, 2018.