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Michael B. Jordan Addresses ‘Fantastic Four’ Rumors

michael b jordan

Amid the polar vortex of rumors and denials swirling around Fox’s Fantastic Four reboot, actor Michael B. Jordan may have delivered the closest thing to confirmation of any detail since director Josh Trank was attached to the project in July 2012.

In an interview with Access Hollywood, the star of Chronicle and Friday Night Lights was asked about the persistent rumor he’ll play Johnny Storm, aka the Human Torch. Jordan stops short of saying yes, explaining, “I can’t even — you know how it is in the industry! I can’t talk [about it] — it’s still up in the air. I just can’t. It’s one of things where, certain people start talking too soon and then what if it doesn’t happen for whatever reason? Then I’m the guy who was out there talking about something that coulda, shoulda, woulda, but didn’t.”

Whether that means the contract hasn’t been signed or Jordan is simply keeping quiet (well, relatively quiet) until the studio is prepared to make an announcement is anybody’s guess. However, it’s pretty clear from his comments that if all goes as planned, he’ll star as the Human Torch.

That, as numerous comments threads have demonstrated, is a significant point of discussion among Marvel readers, as since his debut in 1961, Johnny Storm has been depicted as white in comic books, on television and in movies. Certainly, there are plenty of fans who have no problem with an African-American actor in the role; others wonder how there can be a black Johnny Storm and a white Sue Storm, considering they’re brother and sister (adoptive or half-siblings have been floated as the easiest, and most obvious, explanations). And then there are those who hold firm to the belief that because the character was conceived as white five decades ago, he should remain white.

Jordan appears familiar with the latter argument, and the significance of casting an African-American actor.

“It’s not just about that role — I think times are changing. It’s 2014,” he told Access Hollywood. “Comic books in general were established when we didn’t have civil rights, for the most part. So there weren’t a lot of comic book characters who were geared towards us, period. We weren’t the market that comic books were made for in the beginning. But as times change and things move on, I think us as a people need to evolve as well in our thinking and not be so narrow-minded. So, if not me, if not this project, [if it’s] someone else in another character, I wouldn’t be mad at that at all.”

The Fantastic Four is expected to begin filming late next month for release on June 19, 2015.

(via ComicBookMovie)

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Comments

  • lewis4510

    When the character was played by a white actor a couple years ago it would be too distracting for many people who saw the last two films.

  • Nathan Daniels

    I always prefer characters to be portrayed as close as they can to the comic character, noting that there have to be some changes to make it work for live action. Thus, I’d prefer a white Human Torch, and let Jordan be the Black Panther in the sequel. But I understand wanting to diversify things and it doesn’t upset me if that’s the route they choose to go.

  • Ugh

    I don’t care if they make a black Fantastic Four movie because I’m not gonna see it anyway. They can all be white, disabled, or aliens. It will be crappy. I just don’t want the crappy movie affecting the comic book version like Nick Fury. That was craptastic.

  • Derek Metaltron

    I suppose one has to remember that ultimately it’ll be the character of Johnny Storm which is important to maintain, as opposed to the precise appearance. Truthfully there are a lot more things bugging me about this movie – the utilising or the lesser Ultimate Fantastic Four versions, the rumoured synopsis of seperating the origins of Reed and Ben to the Storms and have them being kidnapped by the government, how exactly Johnny and Sue are related, the rushed release for Junt 2015, the fact Fox are apparently seriously considering a FEMALE Doctor Doom – than this particular casting being all but certain.
    Also anyone seriously concerned that this will cause Marvel to pull a Nick Fury and sudden make Johnny black in the comics, relax because I seriously doubt that’ll happen. Same with Electro, and Kingpin and (to my knowledge) Hendall have remained white too.

  • Derek Metaltron

    Black Panther is owned by Marvel Studios, he can’t appear in a Fantastic Four film. Same with the Inhumans and Namor. Black Panther is a prime candidate for his own film in any case.

  • Ron

    I don’t understand why his ethnicity would change anything. It’s not like making Luke Cage white or Red Skull black or something. When your ethnic background plays a part in your overall character then I’m against changing it, but I would love this! I thought the kid was great in Chronicle and think he’d be a great Johnny Storm.

  • http://www.spinoffonline.com Kevin Melrose

    It’s a reboot; all the characters will be played by different actors.

  • jenny

    It’s funny how when a white actor is cast as a character originally of color (see Bane & Talie in TDKR or Khan in STID) everyone goes “oh it’s just cause they were the most talented/best choice!” but when racebending a character that was original white everyone pearl clutches

  • Mike McTighe

    Actually, as far as is known FOX may hold the rights to Namor, possibly BP and the Inhumans. They were discussed before for an FF appearance. The rights they were sold likely include a list of characters, however if this is the case then they are like Quicksilver and actually exist in both rights simultaneously.

  • Jason Christner

    Your info is wrong. the black Nick Fury had existed LOOOOOOONG before the movies. He was racially changed in the Ultimates series. It was even made as an in-joke that Sam Jackson should play him

  • Tim

    I don’t have any problems with him playing Johnny Storm. But if you’re going to do that, why be bound by the comic depiction of the other 3 members of the team? Why not an Asian or Arabic Reed? Why not a Hispanic Ben?

    It smacks a bit of tokenism.

  • the truth

    well
    “It’s not just about that role — I think times are changing. It’s 2014,”

    Shouldnt The Thing and Mr Fantastic be gay lovers then?

    If there was an issue with the “times changing” dont u think the Fantastic four comic would have changed?

    How can u justify that it needs to change when the comic is still going strong and “change with time”

    Acting like the comic is not on ongoing title.

    It might have been made 5 decades ago, but marvel comics changes with the times, this change obviously is a stupid one or marvel would had done it already

  • David Fullam

    Well there you go. If you are a comic fan who wants to see the movie stick closer to the original characters, then you are close minded (i.e. a racist). Okay, this “racist” won’t be buying a ticket then.

  • Shadowulf McCullough

    You do know the Ultimate universe Nick Fury was modeled after Samuel L. Jackson right so not in the same context. The argument “Comic books in general were established when we didn’t have civil rights, for the most part. So there weren’t a lot of comic book characters who were geared towards us, period” is a total load of bull they are taking a decades old established character and changing his ethnicity because of supposed political correctness the way they did Heimdall (not anything against a good actor but still point made) Now let the studios do so by say making Luke Cage be portrayed by Brock Lesnar or Black Panther By Don the Dragon Wilson and you would have people taking to the streets in outrage. If they want to have him be the human torch that is one thing but to make him Johnny Storm the Human torch is a little much. What next are they going to Change Wyatt Wingfoot to be an Italian from Hoboken New Jersey or Forge to be a Sudanese exchange student you see what I am talking about it has nothing to do with civil rights as it does changing established intellectual property to keep the P.C. butthurt at bay.

  • the truth

    if the fantistic four was not on ongoing title i would agree that it “had not” changed with the times,

    But its a popular ongoing title,

    if the original comic didnt need this drastic marketing gimmick idea, then why does the movie need it?

    could it be that the last 2 movies were a huge flop and they need something to spark controversy to get the movie going?

  • kfrye

    Not to call you racist but are honestly not going to watch the movie because Johnny Storm isn’t white? If you’re not going to see the movie you should have a better reason than that.

  • Mike McTighe

    Naw. It’s pretty much not different than a white Luke Cage, or a black Red Skull (if that’s the route someone chose to go). Specifically here you could argue the race does play a factor, at least so long as Sue is white. It’s basically an aesthetic change, but comics are an aesthetic medium. Not like books where one might have to imagine what a character looks like (even if they are technically pictured somewhere). The greater question is what financial loss (or gain) does the movie incur by making the change. I think arguably the six Electro fans out there probably won’t make or break Spider-Man even if they’re really pissed about it being Jamie Foxx, however I bet a large section of Luke Cage’s audience probably don’t want to see him white, or even kind of white/light skinned. So you’d probably never have a producer, director or writer suggest such a thing, unless they were deliberately trolling a decision like this one. Frankly FOX let the FF rights basically get down to the last week until getting something to green light. I doubt given more time they necessarily would’ve gone this way. I also wonder whether Fox thinks the controversy is worth it. If this movie tanks (or Tranks, get it?) they’ll probably end up letting the rights reverts back to Marvel. So if they do something that inspires a little fan backlash and it works, FOX looks genius. If it fails, they can simply blame the director.

  • the truth

    its a marketing gimmick that doesnt effect this guy

    Tell me 1 good reason for a race change,

    i can give u 5 decades of established stories, for not changing it

  • Bebeto Chupeta

    I hate this idea so much, its too random. Why black? why no asian? why no native american? There isnt a single comic where Johnny isnt white. Just stick to the source and thats it. But its Fox we’re talking about, they dont have a clue about comic books.

  • the truth

    black panther should be white

  • the truth

    ok u dont think the change would change much, but

    can u give 1 good reason for the story to change it in the first place

  • Regis

    Yeah, Mike McTighe here is right. FOX currently has a hold on any characters who made first appearances in Fantastic Four, which would include Black Panther. That’s why Marvel studios couldn’t have Skrulls in the Avengers movie.

  • kfrye

    This is like the Ben Affleck being Batman and Jesse Eisenberg being Lex Luthor news. People hear a drastic change being done and flip their shit. I won’t judge this movie until the credits roll at the end of it.

  • Mike McTighe

    He’s black because Trank wants Michael B. Jordan, although I sympathize with your point about other ethnicities usually not even being considered for race-swapping. But Trank is the furthest along here, he got the green light, and he wanted Jordan for Johnny. Does it make sense? No, not from the comic perspective. But from a director’s perspective they probably like working together, directors like to use talent they’re familiar with, or are familiar with each other (see: Miles Teller for Reed who also worked with Jordan) rather than work with people they’ve never worked with before.

  • Bebeto Chupeta

    I didnt like the scotish Bane, it would been awesome to see a latino Bane.

  • Regis

    I think it would be great to have a black Johnny AND Sue Storm. Actually, a black Fantastic Four could be just fine. I just hope the movie is good.

  • Guest

    I’ve never seen that happen. Replacing a white character with a non-white portrayer isn’t a problem – it wasn’t when Eartha Kitt tapped in for Julie Newmar. But it is becoming a cliche. I’m sure Jordan will be an appealing Human Torch. But the character is a basically a new character, not Johnny Storm. Same as the rumored Wally West and the TV Iris Allen are basically new characters, with only the name carrying over.

    When legacy characters are changed, it’s not wrong for long-time fans to feel a loss. It’s different when creating new characters, where the culture’s diversity means equal access.

    But for long established characters, it’s more of a zero-sum game. Opportunites created for some mean losses for others. So allow the old-timers to feel a loss for Carmine Infantino’s Iris West, Nick Cardy’s Wally West, and Jack Kirby’s Johnny Storm, classic.

    I promise you, if/when a Latina actress inherets the role of Storm, or the next Nick Fury is ethnically of East Asian origin ( Parminder Nagra!), those whose model for the characters are Halle Berry/Ororo and the Ultimate Nick Fury will feel a loss as well.

    As for Talia, those characters always appeared Mediterrenean in apperance, so a French actress as Talia doesn’t seem a stretch – wish it could have been Isabelle Adjani.

  • OmegAustin

    Bullshit!! Ruin yet another FF movie. I get it everyone wants to be PC but lets face it it’s a fucking comic book. Not everything has to be about making a statement. Come up with your own characters and story and don’t ruin something classic.

  • jedispyder

    He’s a great up&coming actor, I’d be perfect fine with him playing Johnny Storm. Fans have adapted to a different race character before (Kingpin, Nick Fury, Electro) so I’m sure they’ll adapt here.

  • ZeoVGM

    Incorrect. Marvel own the rights to both Black Panther and the Inhumans. Namor is the lone Marvel character owned by Universal.

    Fox only owns the following: Fantastic Four, Silver Surfer and X-Men (along with all mutants). The only exception is that they share ownership of Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver with Disney/Marvel.

  • kfrye

    A good reason for race change is that it shows children that not all the superheroes are white. Also 50 years of established story will never be covered in one film or even 2 or 3 films. As long as the core idea is their and the movie is good it shouldn’t matter if Johnny Storm is black, white, asian or otherwise. Saying that a character being black ruins the entire movie is utter nonsense.

  • Ozymandas

    The actor’s argument misses the point, for me. The Fantastic Four are family, not just a team. Ben Grimm is the only one not connected by blood or marriage. If FOX wants to make one of the characters black, it should be him. Otherwise they should make Sue black, too, or one of them is now adopted or they are not siblings of any kind. Now maybe Reed and Sue are an interracial couple or perhaps FOX makes Reed black as well. Nothing’s wrong with any of that but at what point does it stray too far from the source material? Might as well drop the FF rights and let the movie be its own thing. Either that or make the whole cast black to preserve the sense of family. It worked so well for the Honeymooners…

  • kfrye

    Exactly. Remember the shit storm that came when it was announced that Spider-man would be a black latino?

  • smart internet man

    i don’t think it’s a pertinent character trait of Johnny Storm’s, being white. this affects you in NO WAY whatsoever, and you are the one butthurt that they’d even make these changed. for what reason? because fictional white characters created to appease white males need to stay white? the reasoning is cyclical, your argument is invalid, and you’re the reason why this stupid race-switch shit should—no, NEEDS to happen.

  • Melwing

    People who saw the last two films and are wanting more of the same should not really factor into any decisions made, ever.

  • Jason A. Quest

    People who are primarily concerned about whether the actor looks the same as how the character is drawn in the comics are too intellectually shallow for me to care what they think.

  • smart internet man

    story? how about the actor being good?

  • Mike McTighe

    Skrulls are joint owned, like Quicksilver. Joss Whedon mentioned they both could’ve used them, but Joss opted not too because he didn’t want to address the shape shifting (or something like that). Although originally I think they were planned as the villain.

  • Melwing

    Johnny Storm was not created to give white kids a superhero to be inspired by.

  • ZeoVGM

    Being gay lovers changes the story. The color of the Human Torch’s skin does not as it is not relative to his character like it would be to Black Panther.

    Your logic is very flawed.

  • Will Cazmir

    think this is major…wait until Idris Elba is James Bond. But on a more interesting note. There have been caucasians in non-caucasian roles e.g. Prince of Persia, Last Airbender, Lone Ranger, Cleopatra, Dragonball, Hunger Games, Argo, and the list goes on. You clowns don’t understand the meaning of integration and would prefer that all leading roles be portrayed by white men. It’s sad and i hope your sons and daughter have interracial babies and phase you prejudice SOBs out of existence

  • ZeoVGM

    Yeah, Skrulls in general are co-owned but Super Skrull is Fox-only.

  • ZeoVGM

    Please list all the established Human Torch stories about his skin color.

    There doesn’t have to be a “reason” for a race change other than Michael B. Jordon being able to play a good Human Torch.

  • Mike McTighe

    I don’t know about that. The FF one maybe, or maybe the name SS, but if I recall Marvel had concept art for an Avengers SS. He ended up in the video game but was originally considered for the movie, but for all I know they weren’t calling him SS.

  • James Bishop

    I keep hearing the megameme: It’s not like the movies are the comics so who cares if they cast black for white, etc.? Answer: The actual fans of the material do. Some of us spent a great deal of our personal time and money actually supporting the material, keeping the medium alive in our limited geek circles. The rest of you pretty much shunned us for that nerdy behavior all those years ago – we were too much the geeks to land the supermodel cheerleader girlfriends and either… had to closet the hobbies or become hybrids of social acceptability. Years later, we’re all grown up with families and now you all come around and discover how cool our hobby is? Where the fuck were you while you encouraged your kids to play Nintendo instead of collecting comics and playing D&D and reading awesome books. We have watched as our media has fallen out of print, been watered down by pandering no-talent writers and industry stupidity, and priced to $4 per book. This has really prevented the average from the old guard from collecting anymore. Now people want to complain that all us original comic book hobby fans (who made it cool long before you realized we did) are somehow out of place by suggesting that we’re tired of the retroactive continuity changes and bastardization of the stories we loved and supported? Or how about the ‘new’ generation (whom the shitty writers belong to) who are as guilty of those shitty writers for having zero respect for the same and thus being part of the masses saying old school fans are racist. It’s like people who bulldoze historical buildings to build shiny skyscrapers. Stop tearing up the classics. Write something new if you actually can or leave it the heck alone.

  • ZeoVGM

    Oh stop, you have no actual reason as to why he should stay white. This isn’t the comic. It’s another universe.

    And I’m sure Asian wouldn’t be a problem but Michael B. Jordon has been rumored for a long time. Not because he’s black but because he’s a good actor who would fit the character who also has close ties with the director.

  • Danno

    Good reason #2
    If the actor’s skill, style, salary, and availability is best suited for the role, then his race is of little concern…assuming his race isn’t integral to the character; it would make little sense to have Malcolm X played by Tom Hanks.

    Idris Elba played Heimdall. Michael Clarke Duncan played the Kingpin. I’m sure there purists who threw fits about it but I really don’t think I’m alone in saying that those guys were great in their respective roles.

    And in the case of Halle Berry playing Catwoman, it would be really hard for someone to argue that her race was a factor in that movie sucking.

  • AL

    That’s true, but eventually they changed the one in the regular 616 universe to look like sam jackson too. ( actually he’s nick fury jr. but still, there was no need for that )

  • James Bishop

    Hey vote me down if you want, I don’t care, this isn’t about race. Stop using our hobby to apologize for your perception of social ills.

  • Melwing

    If you really think ethnicity and sexual orientation are comparable like this, you really need to think about it a little more.

  • kfrye

    I agree with you 100%. If this movie sucks it won’t be because Johnny was black.

  • Hiff Cluxtable

    tl;dr – “I never dated a supermodel and comics are expensive, so please let me have this one thing I need: a white Human Torch!”

  • Melwing

    Besides, guys. His skin is usually ORANGE.

  • J.p. Ducey

    You’re a moron. Last Airbender? Dragonball? Lone Ranger? All those movies were garbage and would have sucked whether the characters were played by whites blacks asians or monkeys.

  • uatu13

    Who’s this jack-ass think he is to call people “narrow minded” because we respect the history and reality of a character. How about this, we make a Malcolm X movie and it’s played by Benedict Cumberbatch?

    Race swapping existing characters is just pandering and racist itself. If you want some decent black comic characters then buy those comics, and be vocal about having those movies made. You’re right, it is 2014, there are plenty of existing minority comic characters, so what is the problem with making a movie starring any of them?

  • James Bishop

    You should have read the whole thing. And I never said I didn’t date a supermodel, I was generalizing the stereotype; your reading comprehension is short.

  • Mike McTighe

    I actually agree with you in respect to most of the people who think it’s “racist” to not want a black Johnny Storm simply don’t read the comics, or don’t understand where those people are coming from. I think it is probably frustrating to read particularly something classic like a Kirby/Lee Fantastic Four, and have this conception of that art come to life, like an Alex Ross painting, and then see something far different in a movie. I don’t think anyone protesting the aesthetic changes are racist, simply they want a straighter adaption of the material. If they were actually racist they’d want no black characters whatsoever, and I haven’t seen any advocate that.

  • pg

    I can’t believe some of you people.

    If you were to describe Johnny’s character you would say he’s young, good-looking, cocky, fun-loving, immature, brash, impulsive and loyal plus he can burst into flame and fly around. You notice how “white” doesn’t come up?

    The Red Skull and Luke Cage’s races are absolutely central to their identity in a way that Johnny’s isn’t. Johnny is white because that was the default back then, not for a story reason. If they’re going to recast these characters with new actors anyways, why not be open to different races?

  • Hiff Cluxtable

    Malcolm X is a human and Johnny Storm is a character. The fact that you don’t get the difference is a large part of the problem.

  • Will Cazmir

    good point, how could I have missed that. Care to make a rebuttal on the other movies that went on to make million, one of which is almost a billion dollar franchise?

  • Melwing

    I did read the whole thing, and Mr. Cluxtable’s comment rings completely accurate.

  • pg

    Did you take issue with casting a white guy for Green Lantern since many kids grew up watching JLU?

  • Will Cazmir

    hollywood should only target the middle aged white comic book fan.

  • pg

    I think he wouldn’t be a good choice for black panther. He’s too young & too American.

  • Mike McTighe

    Well a white(ish — actually heavily mixed, but not black, with lots of white) guy played Barack Obama on SNL

  • James Bishop

    Your problem is that you want to retcon the literature to fit your politics.

  • Melwing

    And Barack Obama is mixed, but not black. You guys are something else.

  • uatu13

    So if a guy is black or a nazi it’s part of his character, but if he’s white it isn’t. Sounds like you’re the one that is being dense.

  • Will Cazmir

    best rational comment thus far

  • James Bishop

    When they show him on FIRE.

  • Will Cazmir

    but it isn’t. Stay within the realm of reason sir

  • Hiff Cluxtable

    Lived up to your name.

  • James Bishop

    Hollywood should present the media as close to its literary state as the source material instead of trying to make social policy. And who said I’m white?

  • Mike McTighe

    I’m also certain neither Liam Neeson nor Ralph Fienes are German.

  • pg

    It’s much different than Luke Cage who was specifically created as the hero of Harlem and to be a black character. Red Skull also is specifically a German Nazi it’s central to his identity. Johnny is only white because that was the default when Stan & Jack made him.

  • Will Cazmir

    because hollywood is so good at retaining the source material

  • Mike McTighe

    There are white guys in Harlem, last I checked. And there were black people in German as well, and Red Skull started as a Nazi experiment, so it wouldn’t be completely out of place to have a black guy get experimented on by a bunch of Nazis.

  • James Bishop

    Why be open to changing the literature: Comic books are a visual medium. The likeness of the character is a copyright property. Why are you advocating changing the literature?

  • Mike McTighe

    Also Ben is Jewish, which in no way was a default at the time, and a far more common trait of villains in the 60s era comics.

  • uatu13

    When you’re making a movie there isn’t a damn difference. “It’s about the character, not his race” people say, but only if it’s a white guy getting swapped out. If this shit happened with a movie about Shang Chi or Black Panther it would be just as idiotic.

  • James Bishop

    The copyright on the character’s likeness that is part of the characters concept as presented for 50 years is pretty well documented. Why change now?

  • pg

    Why black? Because the director likes Michael B Jordan for the role! If he liked an asian or white actor for the role he’d suggest him.

  • James Bishop

    And that’s an excuse to undo 50 years of literature?

  • Will Cazmir

    Malcom Little aka Malcom X is a real NONFICTIONAL being
    Jonathon Storm aka Human Torch is a FICTIONAL CHARACTER who can burst into flames and somehow about to survive and FLY! Don’t see how changing his race matters much seeing as though everything else he does is physically impossible

  • uatu13

    So being white isn’t part of a person’s character, but being any other race is? That’s some stupid-ass logic there.

  • the truth

    Im not saying MBJ isnt a good actor

    im saying changing the story for a race change is messed up

    they are casting a white girl as sue storm, yet johnny is black,

    They are prob going the whole adopted route even though being blood related is huge to the story

    its an easy enough change, to say he was adopted early

    But so is changing any black character and making them white and saying the white character dealt with the same stuff. A white person can be racially profiled also.

    Its a story, if u have no issue with Johhny storm being black,

    then u should have no problem with Luke Cage being White, or blade being white.

    The a white luke cage or white blade could have their story altered the same way johnnys is, to make it inline with the character

  • James Bishop

    But we’re talking about Literature. Stay within the realm of reason sir.

  • uatu13

    Are you high or something?

  • Billy’s Kingdom

    Surely they’d be more distracted by the fact that the Human Torch turned out to be Captain America?

  • Mike McTighe

    Well there’s a reason it’s called “acting” and not called “being”. Ethnic swaps and race swaps are pretty common in Hollywood. Johnny Depp was Tonto after all.

  • Will Cazmir

    1 you can’t copyright race and 2 fictional work can be revised and rewritten if said copyright is purchased.

  • the truth

    this guy gets it!!!

  • uatu13

    And how are they not comparable?

  • Mike McTighe

    It’s not my favorite thing ever, frankly. One of my pet peeves is how movies seem to assume Europe is basically all British.

  • James Bishop

    You are an idiot sir. You need to study copyright law. The likeness is part of the copyright and also the trademark. And you didn’t answer the question. Why change now? To What End?

  • pg

    Ben was never explicitly portrayed as Jewish until many years later. How many explicitly Jewish villains were there in 60’s comics?

    Man you’re being deliberately obtuse if you can’t admit that Johnny’s whiteness is incidental to his identity where it’s central to Red Skull and Luke Cage’s. When you list the 10 most important characteristics of Johnny, is “white” on that list?

  • Billy’s Kingdom

    This where the word “minority” is effective.

  • Hiff Cluxtable

    Because the actor is right for the role. Pretty simple.

  • James Bishop

    Not good enough. He doesn’t fit the role. Johnny Storm is whether you like it or not, white. This doesn’t make me a racist. It is what it is.

  • Hiff Cluxtable

    Name-calling instantly displays lack of intellect.

  • Mike McTighe

    I agree. I think the saddest thing is “black Johnny Storm” is sort of a backhanded insult to black characters. That assumption that no one could creatively make Night Thrasher into a bankable character, so lets make a white characters another race/ethnicity instead.

  • the truth

    so being white has non effect on the character

    but changing a black character to white, changes who they are….

    talk about racist

    If u can accept a black johhny storm and white sue storm, then u should accept a white Luke Cage or a white blade

  • James Bishop

    So does a dyslexic forum handle.

  • uatu13

    Why don’t we just make Johnny Storm a fucking Alf puppet that only speaks Swahili then if it doesn’t matter since he’s fictional? You just don’t give a shit about the work and effort put into fiction apparently.

  • pg

    Haha this sums it up the best.

  • Hiff Cluxtable

    If you care whether a comic book character is played by a non-white person, you are a racist. Look in the mirror and accept it or, if you don’t like it, change it.

  • Will Cazmir

    no, hollywood doesn’t care about you and your kind. They only care about the almighty dollar. And if a black torch puts more asses in seat than the other F4 movies then so be it. You can ramble on the internet about your white human torch but your little10-20 bucks you spend doesn’t mean a thing

  • James Bishop

    Dude. Wake up. I’m not racist. The character is WHITE. He has been WHITE for fifty-three years! Why change now?

  • Bluebolt

    I don’t mind that Johnny could be African-American. Character re-interpretation for movies has been done before and I’m okay with differences from how the characters appear in the comics. But I would call out 20th Century Fox for not making Johnny and Susan brother and sister. If they cast a caucasian actress to portray Sue and make the two adopted siblings, then I think 20th Century Fox is being kind of racist by not also casting an African-American woman. Most Americans (excluding a small backwards-looking, xenophobic minority) are fine with inter-racial dating and marriage but I think Fox is copping out to avoid this in order to not potentially hurt the marketability of their movie to this small population fringe group. If Fox wants to make a point that anyone can be Johnny then they ought to go through with their thoughts and treat Sue the same way. This isn’t going to happen and because of this, I don’t think anyone needs to be giving the studio positive marks for casting an African-America Johnny Storm.

  • Mike McTighe

    They make pretty overt references to his Judaism in the Lee/Kirby years. They just never straight up show him at a temple or anything because like DareDevil (and Kirby) he grew up on the streets of New York and simply was not very culturally religious until it suited him.

  • the truth

    i think changing luke cage , blade, black panther, falcon, and many more heroes to white is a better example than Malcolm X

  • James Bishop

    There you have it. An honest answer that has nothing to do with racism. So its about guys like you that support the raping of literature for money and have zero respect for the medium’s origins and sanctities. Yea… fuck off now.

  • Hiff Cluxtable

    50,000 comic fans times $10 average movie ticket = $500,000 opening weekend! Score!

  • James Bishop

    I hope this happens so we can see the backlash of hypocrisy that will ensue.

  • Danno

    Yeah I guess I don’t have those casting problems with Luke Cage and Blade. I *can* see a racial component with Cage, mainly because race does have a place in his origin story. But the same origin could happen to anyone raised in poverty in NY. I don’t know much about Blade. Haven’t read his books.

    I’m white. My sister is originally from Malaysia and was adopted by our (white) parents at age 2. So yeah, the idea of a mixed race, adoptive family really doesn’t strike me as problematic. But I do know from experience that there are a lot of people out there for whom color is everything

  • Mike McTighe

    It’s not central to anyone’s character beyond that’s the choice the creators have chosen to take it. There are several iterations of both the Red Skull and Luke Cage. Even a Luke Cage who is essentially a non powered bullsh** artist (in Ultimate). So to act as though some characters are untouchable is pretty silly. No character is technically safe from this if you want to get down to it. It’s simply a financial decision that would probably prevent a character like Luke Cage (or Panther) from being changed like that. However there was a female Panther already.

  • Will Cazmir

    in the human torch descriptors none say he’s white. Look it up.

  • James Bishop

    wow – you’re funny. No.. wait. You’re not.

  • Mike McTighe

    Why, because I challenged his silly notion that somehow certain characters are beyond race swaps? I don’t see how any are, frankly. It’s just certain characters are not tampered with in this way. Like I said above, Tonto is pretty much supposed to be Indian, according to the story. He was played by a white guy named Johnny Depp.

  • James Bishop

    Sure it does. Sure.

  • LillardFan420

    So you want Reed to hit Sue? After all, that’s in the source material.

  • James Bishop

    Hurry build a straw man!

  • Guest2

    Good point, he will be playing a new character. Just like Hugh Jackman did, just like Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield did, just like Robert Downey Jr did as Sherklock Holmes, Kenneth Branagh did in Hamlet and Chris Pine did in Jack Ryan (I assume, even I have my limits). When ever a character is adapted, they’re a new character.
    As long as Michael B. Jordan plays Johnny Storm as a cocky, brave, loyal and energetic ladies man, I’ll be happy.

  • Roger_S

    I think this is all a matter of who the character is. Would it be ok if we had a black Bruce Wayne? I’m sure the movie companies know that you can’t mess with the Batman franchise or else face the backlash. But FF….it’s been done and this is the studio’s attempt to mix it up and try something new to reach a broader audience. FF doesn’t have the clout it once did; it’s become nearly a second tier group. Fox is doing what they feel will bring a broader audience to the theater and they know the outcry would be minimal and they could get new viewers.

    BUT that said, make Black Panther or Blade a white man or woman instead of black, and I think there would be such an outcry by such a small minority that the movie company wouldn’t even attempt it.

    2nd Tier or lesser known, they’ll make all the changes they want because they hope it’ll bring in new viewers. Black characters, keep them black or face the outcry. 1st Tier characters, better not alter them or face a vocal MAJORITY. It’s all business.

  • Ron

    Give one good reason not to change it. Why take away from the movie by not casting the best actor for the part based on skin color?

  • Mike McTighe

    Okay, well a black guy plays him now on the program, and he isn’t mixed.

  • Ron

    Sorry dude but you are grasping at straws here…

  • Mike McTighe

    I don’t know if either Ben Affleck or Jesse Eisenberg represent a drastic change so much as people doubt they’re acting abilities.

  • pg

    From the very beginning, Luke Cage stories dealt with his race. He was created specifically for the purpose of having a black hero. He talked in an exaggerated dialect, protected a black neighborhood, dealt with racist villains etc.

    The Red Skull is German. That’s a big part of his character and has been from the very beginning. He’s explicitly shown as super racist towards other races and think he’s superior because he’s Aryan etc. In the comics he was personally selected by Adolf Hitler because he thought he had potential! He’s deliberately meant as a counterpoint to Cap.

    Contrast that with Johnny Storm, how many stories have you read where Johnny’s whiteness has anything to do with the story?

  • James Bishop

    Google Johnny Storm Human Torch and click images… in fact: http://lmgtfy.com/?q=Johnny+Storm+Human+Torch

  • Guest2

    It depends on the character. Luke Cage is defined as being a man from Harlem wrongfully sent to prison by an uncaring system. The Black Panther is the king of an African nation with a lineage stretching back centuries.

    Can you see how these two characters might need to be played by black people?

    Johnny Storm is a brash teenage lothario with a very close relationship to his older sister. He joins his sister and her scientist boyfriend on a space journey and gains cosmic powers.

    What there screams ‘white’ to you? Johnny could be white, black, asian, British or North Korean.

    There are some characters who have to be white. Steve Rogers for instance, as the symbol of the American military in WW2, should probably be played by a white man.

    On a slightly related note, Jordan isn’t being cast in this movie because of political correctness or the colour of his skin. He’s very good friends with the director, they’ve worked before, and he’s probably one of the most talented male actors his age in Hollywood right now. If you were the director, who would you rather cast?

  • uatu13

    The problem with you is that you don’t see “whiteness” as being important to a character. How about this, they include Monica Rambeau in an avengers movie, and make her chinese? is that cool? How about making black panther hispanic? There’s nothing about black panther that needs to be a black guy, but doing this arbitrary race swaps is pandering PC-retardedness at its height!

  • Mike McTighe

    I’m pretty sure you’re right about this. At least in FOX’s eyes, Fantastic Four is not the money-maker they assumed it would be. Since they’ve acquired the rights it’s steadily slipped as a monthly title, and the Ultimate book is now so far from the original they might as well call it something new.
    Batman, on the other hand, is far more bankable in the form he’s been since 1939. As is James Bond, hence the massive pushback against Idris Elba. I doubt we’ll see any race swaps in them for decades.
    Double true of characters like Kingpin and Electro, who lack any cohesive fanbase, do not hold solo titles, and are basically new(ish) characters to non comic fans. You could render them beyond recognizable (and frequently they do) and it’ll never impact ticket sales, except for maybe like the six fans of those characters.

  • Guest2

    As I’ve said above, Jordan is a very close friend of the director. It’s not tokenism, it’s a director choosing an actor he likes/trusts before taking on the biggest movie of his career.

  • James Bishop

    Well I hope Johnny’s “whiteness” had nothing to do with his stories. But there’s no reason whatsoever to change him now, and that is the point. It’s not a ‘why can’t we’ or ‘why not be open to it’… There’s just no justifiable reason to do it. He has been who he is for 53 years. The question was answered in someone’s reply to me below. Will Cazmir – to – James Bishop

    “no, hollywood doesn’t care about you and your kind. They only care about the almighty dollar. And if a black torch puts more asses in seat than the other F4 movies then so be it. You can ramble on the internet about your white human torch but your little10-20 bucks you spend doesn’t mean a thing”

  • uatu13

    So there aren’t black people in Africa then? OK, white black panther it is! Actually, what says “white” about Johnny Storm is the character, that happens to have appeared in hundreds of comic books, and thousands of images. You can try to hit him with a PC stick and pretend he’s not white, but he is, and race-swapping existing characters is just PC bullshit.

  • smart internet man

    no, but what is stupid ass logic is inferring that point in what i said, since it is not written in there. anywhere. see, stupid people tend to make that “if X is true, then Y must be as well” comparison when there is little else to back them up.

  • stephenmonteith

    Actually, a lot of people Were confused, and even angry, that Green Lantern was white in the movie. They had no idea Hal Jordan came before John Stewart. There’s always danger of whiplash, at least.

  • smart internet man

    you keep doing this. why? it doesn’t make you appear intelligent, nor is it a relevant or even sensical point. it just shows you get angry over a simple change that really has no impact on the way you live your life. but continue to get angry, entitled white nerd.

  • James Bishop

    That sums it up: It’s about the money and this director trying to generate buzz by sayin, “I’ll be edgy, I’ll cast a black guy in the role of a 53 year old white character!” Ask yourself, would the Black community, be okay if T’Challa, the king of a (fictional!) African nation was cast as a light-skinned Arab? His kingdom is fictional and in Africa… Why not? Answer: There would be such the outcry from the fanbase (of ALL colors) because that would be an injustice to the CHARACTER. Take off the liberal blinders and try a different view.

  • Mike McTighe

    Red Skull is a “red skull”. His race is disguised under a mask, and in no way does Hugo Weaving share his ethnicity, who is actually from Nigeria, making him African…surprise, surprise.

  • uatu13

    Well, apparently you don’t give a shit about the characters in comic books. Do you even read comics? Yeah, we need more PC pandering trash in our society, good job there, it’s really helped out so far. I hope this movie tanks so hard marvel can get the movie rights back for FF and we can finally see a decent movie done by someone that actually cares about these characters.

  • Kiersten

    While I would absolutely love to see John Stewart as Green Lantern (I think Idris Elba would be fantastic in the role!). Hal Jordan was chosen for a movie because he was the first modern day Green Lantern.

  • pg

    Seriously, dude? The Black Panther is the king of an African nation with a lineage that stretches back thousands of years. From the very beginning his stories dealt with his blackness. Not only that the comics were promoted and sold to black kids as a hero they could identify with. That was the whole point!

  • Guest2

    Do you think this movie is going to be the first couple of issues of Fantastic Four with the original dialogue intact? Because you know they originally went into space to beat the USSR. That’s gonna be pretty weird.

    Every movie adaption changes the literature. Some of the best regarded Shakespeare movies change the script, and he’s synonymous with ‘great writer’.

    The things to worry about are changes that will harm or lessen the core strengths and appeal of the source text. If this movie, for instance, has Reed cause Doom’s accident rather than Doom’s own hubris, I’d be pretty upset. It would change the entire dynamic of their relationship and confuse the audience’s sympathies too much.

    Also, don’t bring up copyright, how do you think the movie gets made in the first place? Fox could make a movie about a plate of cheese called the Human Torch and nobody could stop them

  • Kiersten

    Well said.

  • Mike McTighe

    Not everyone in Africa is black. It’s actually the most diverse racial area in the world.

  • Mike McTighe

    On your USSR point: I’ve always wanted FF to be a period piece like First Class.

  • LillardFan420

    Red Skull has to be white because no non-white person would be a high ranking Nazi. Steve Rogers probably has to be white because the US government in the 1940’s wouldn’t use a non-white person as a propaganda figure (though in the inevitable Cap reboot, they could use the Isaiah Bradley origin instead of the Steve Rogers one). Black Panther has to be black because he’s the ruler of a never-colonized sub-Saharan African nation.

    Spider-Man is a smart but poor kid from Queens who gets his powers by accident, so an actor of any race can play him. Heimdall is not the mythological figure, he’s an alien that Vikings told third-hand stories about, so an actor of any race can play him. Johnny Storm is a kinda dumb teenager who likes partying and gets dragged into the FF because of his sister, so an actor of any race can play him. Even Danny Rand can be played by an actor of any race, because a rich kid from Dubai or Hong Kong would be an outsider in Kun-Lun just as much as a rich kid from NYC. The Punisher fought in a war and had a family that died because they were in the wrong place at the wrong time, so an actor of any race can play him.

    Look, people, this ain’t hard to figure out. Does an important part of the character’s story (not the appearance, the STORY) directly or indirectly involve race? If so, keep it the same. If not, you can change it. But try not to change a character that’s a member of a racial/ethnic minority to one that’s in the majority, because there’s a dearth of good minority characters in comics.

    For the record, I’m not interested in debating because 1) I’ve heard it all before, and 2) I don’t like talking to Red Skull/Baron Zemo/Dr. Zola types.

  • pg

    So your point is?

  • uatu13

    Listen you internet tard, you may not care about comics or the characters, but I do. Why are you even on this site if you don’t give a shit about comics? You can say it doesn’t affect me, but living in a retarded PC society where pandering to idiots is more important that honesty and fairness does affect me. I hope you get this pile of crap movie that doesn’t care about the stories and characters that many of us love, and I can’t wait for it to flop on its face.

  • Mike McTighe

    That you keep claiming certain characters are default white, when clearly they are not. You use Red Skull as an example, ironically a German part played by an African native.

  • Guest

    Johnny is not the hereditary king of a European kingdom.

  • Guest2

    Oh gee, I didn’t realise you were a conservative.

    It’s the free market, dear. Go whine to the government

  • uatu13

    So, African=Black then? You might want to learn a bit more about africa. And, apparently every black hero was created to give black kids someone “to identify with” to and “to look up to”, but who gives a shit about white characters. You do know that having different sets of rules for different races is exactly what racism is, right?

  • smart internet man

    i read comics, no need to question that. i’d sit here and give you my reading list or favorite books but there’s no need for me to prove that. these character changes, whether adapted or rebooted or what have you, are minor. cosmetic. what matters is the stories. THIS FILM IS NOT OUT YET. there is no reason to trash something based on a casting announcement. no one has seen the film. to say it’s not a decent movie is, hmmm, how can i put this. fucking retarded.

    but it’s cool, because something as minor as skin color is A BIG FRIGGIN DEAL TO RACIST UATU13, WHO MUST HAVE ALL WHITE CHARACTERS FROM THE 1920s REMAIN WHITE SO HIS WHITE RACIST SON HAS ANOTHER BLONDE/WHITE ROLE MODEL TO LOOK UP TO!

  • Mike McTighe

    Actually every white person in American has the blood of a European king somewhere in their DNA.

  • Ron

    Are any of those established stories based around Johnny being white? Would the stories be any different if he was black? I think that’s the point people are tring to make.

  • Mike McTighe

    The term “blood” is semantics before you want to go down that road.

  • uatu13

    You’re a full-bore moron tard internet man. Yes, I’m racist because I actually care about characters that have been around for decades and that are crucial to our history. Just keep throwing away your integrity to keep pandering to PC-nazis, it’s been a good plan so far!

  • Guest2

    You saw the first two FF movies right? After those abominations, how can casting a black guy make you so mad?

  • Mike McTighe

    There were non white high ranking Nazis. In fact there were Jewish high ranking Nazis (100,000 Jewish SS in fact). When they asked Goebbells about this he replied “because I decide who is a Jew and who isn’t”.

  • Guest2

    You know there’s been a transgender girl student staying with the FF for the last couple of years of the comics. Are you excited they might include that?

  • Ian

    The problem remains on one thing: we are talking about comic books, not about human rights or laws… Why is so important to have an afroamerican as Johnny Storm? Is it supposed to change anything? Of course not.

    The Fantastic Four is a legacy that surpass the “political correct” agenda of the movie studios or even of the comic book industry. We, as readers, understand that comics are a bussiness, and we know they will be changes in time(specially when were talking about ongoings), but I don’t think right to change the essence of the characters just because Marvel or Fox needs to look like they’re so open minded, so cool or whatever. What about the artistic purpose of the original creators? Johnny Storm was conceived white and american, not black, not chinese, not german, not italian.

    And lets be honest. If the studios want to satisfy a minority, they don’t need to look back to the afroamerican, the latino or the gay communities… The only minority the need to satisfy, the only thing they need to see, is us. The geek, the nerdy, the fanboys… The ones who had sustained the sales of comics books for years and years… We are responsible for these properties to even exist, and when the rights for a movie are purchased (or developed by the owners, like Marvel or DC), those executives aren’t looking to make a movie that feels right for us, they don’t want to make us happy (by making a movie adaptation as close as possible to the original material), they don’t want to sell the movie to us, they want to sell it to the others, the ones who don’t give a damn about comic books.

    What I am trying to say, is this: afroamericans are not a big part of the comic book market. If they were, titles led by afroamerican characters (like Black Phanter, Icon, Static Shock, Mr. Terrific, Blade, Batwing) should never have been cancelled in the first place. Those comics are cancelled, because they don’t sell enough copies. Why? Because one of these two things:

    1- Afroamericans are not a big part of the market. Then, even if all of them buys comics, the sales are not sufficient to justify the existence of a comic book with an afroamerican character.

    or…

    2- Afroamericans are a really big part of the market, but they don’t give a damn on black characters because they don’t feel represented by them (which means that the companies need better writers to creater ORIGINAL black, gay, latino, or whatever characters needed, instead of changing on an arbitrary way already stablished characters), or simply they don’t like it and… That’s it.

    Why to make all these changes if the minorities isn’t responding WITH MONEY (by purchasing the products modified for them)? In my case, I’m mexican, and everytime I read a mexican or a latino character on comic books, I feel sorry for the writers, because they don’t know how to represent them. That’s why I prefer to read other kind of characters (well written) than reading a mexican or a latino screaming nonsense like “Ay caramba” or any other idiotic phrase that in reality mexicans or latinos never say.

    If the demands of the market are big enough (I don’t think so) to make more gay, latino, afroamerican, muslim, russian, purple, alien or whatever characters, then make it. But make it GOOD, and maket it NEW. The companies don’t need to make Superman gay, Batman muslim, Spider-Man transgender, Wolverine a gypsy, please, don’t ruin it… Make new characters, villains, heroes, sidekicks, but don’t mess with the legacies, with the original conception, and with the characters we already know and love.

  • LillardFan420

    This “copyright” stuff is a complete non sequitur. Are you saying that Marvel is going to sue Fox for breach of copyright for casting a black actor? What on Earth are you saying? For the love of god, please don’t answer.

  • smart internet man

    you care too much about the skin color of a fictional character, and saying that i “don’t care about characters in comic books” shows you truly are incapable of looking at the bigger picture here. people like you will always exist, and it sucks because you’ll teach your kids that being a fucking jackass is acceptable. please consider castration before procreation.

  • Guest2

    I’ve read all the Stan and Jack stuff, most of Byrne’s run, all of Waid and Wieringo’s and everything from the last decade or so. Why am I excited by this news, not angry? I mean, I’m excited because they’ve (almost) cast a really good actor as Johnny Storm, increasing the chances the movie will be enjoyable. Why are you mad, brother?

  • uatu13

    And I shudder to think about whatever arrogant, PC, internet troll you’re raising.

  • LillardFan420

    “Distracting”? Like people are going to look at their phones instead of the IMAX screen because Wallace from the Wire is Johnny Storm? What does “distracting” mean in this context?

  • Guest2

    You don’t speak for all of the fans, and neither do I. If you want to have a pissing contest about who’s the bigger fan, that’s a different matter

  • smart internet man

    “arrogant.” pot, kettle. you know the rest.

  • Mike McTighe

    It’s also a stretch to say Heimdall can be “any race”. Yeah sure he’s an alien, but that’s just done because Marvel doesn’t technically have “Gods” so they needed some pseudoscience explanation for why Thor and Hercules can stand in the same room together. It’s pretty obvious though they are characters from Nordic myth, who would’ve been white by today’s standards.
    Danny Rand? Eh? I don’t know about that. His whiteness factors into his stories since he’s supposed to be this pretty-boy, blonde, city slicker who basically becomes a minority in the city of Kun-Lun. The story takes a slightly different tone, certainly if you made him Asian he would lose his outsider aspect.
    Also Frank Castle is not Frank’s real name, it’s Castilagio (or something) and he’s Italian Catholic. Before becoming Punisher he was in Seminary.

  • James Bishop

    There are plenty of good actors out there. It’s needless.

  • LillardFan420

    Opposing racism isn’t “politics,” it’s basic humanity.

  • James Bishop

    Dude, did you actually read the conversation? It’s not a non sequitur. It makes a valid point.

  • James Bishop

    You clearly don’t know what racism is.

  • uatu13

    Touche, you fucking retard.

  • Guest2

    We’re waisting our time arguing with close-minded idiots on the internet, of course we care about comics. We’re not here for the scintillating conversation, I can get that in the latest issue of Saga.

    You associate caring about the characters with wanting them not to change. I care about the characters and want them to grow. In this instance, I want a good Fantastic Four movie, one that captures the excitement of exploring new possibilities and horizons, the love and strength and loyalty of a family going to the edges of scientific discovery. The director thinks Michael B. Jordan playing Johnny Storm will help him make the best movie he can, and I’m hoping that it does

  • James Bishop

    Yep Danno. Free market. I will vote with my wallet and not support the project if it ‘reimagines’ the characters for the sake of a political dollar.

  • Mike McTighe

    Nowhere in my remark did I say anything close to this.

  • James Bishop

    And? So your saying because T’Challa is a king it’s not okay to change his color or because he’s a -black king- hmm?

  • LillardFan420

    Frank being Italian and Catholic doesn’t usually have anything to do with the STORY. Though you could certainly tell a Punisher story where him being from the same neighborhood and background as the organized crime group that killed his family is a factor. But even then, you could make Frank of Russian descent, and have his family killed by the Russian Mafia. You could make Frank Salvadoran, and have his family killed by MS-13. You could make Frank Chinese, and have his family killed by the Triads. And that’s all only if you make the neighborhood connection a part of the story, and I don’t think it’s integral to the character of the Punisher.

  • Guest2

    We’ve disagreed about a lot in this thread, but I am fully on board for that. I wished First Class had been even more 60s, so another movie doing the same thing would be great. As long as they include big, crazy, Kirby-esque machinery, I would be so happy

    And in that movie, I think it would be best to have Johnny played by a white actor. Back then a slightly spoiled, carefree teen in midtown Manhattan who drives fancy cars all the time would be incongruous if played by a black man (or it would at least require a lot more of the story to focus on race issues than would be ideal for a fun adventure flick)

  • Guest2

    I might disagree with some of your facts there, but were any of these high ranking Nazis as powerful as the Red Skull, even if you don’t include his close relationship to Hitler?

  • James Bishop

    Some of us acknowledge that the character is the whole likeness, not just the story.

  • Dezz

    Chris Evans was one of the few things FOX got right in the first F4 film. So to do this would put the nail the box office coffin. It is 2014 and if I’m not mistaken this film would revert back to Marvel if FOX doesn’t set shop by a certain date this year. So instead of us feeling guilty because some starving actor simply wants a check, how about we motion that FOX reverts this franchise back to a studio that knows what they’re doing. That’s the only evolution that I’m interested in!

  • LillardFan420

    I asked you not to answer, now I have depression :(

  • Ian

    Is it bad to want an straight adaptation of the comic book? Damn it.

  • Mike McTighe

    Keanu Reeves played Buddha who is supposedly a non fiction character.
    Christian Bale and Jim Cavezial played Christ, and I’m pretty sure the Christ didn’t look like a white dude, and is also real.
    Noah is being played by Russell Crowe.
    Moses was played by Charlton Heston

  • Guest2

    How many of these other good actors are the right age and have an established relationship with the director?

    One. Miles Teller. He’s the guy who’ll be playing Reed Richards.

    The sad fact is the director wants to make the best movie he can, and your individual opinion doesn’t mean too much to him. And unless somebody’s performed an authoritative poll I don’t know about, you don’t speak for the entire fan community

  • Mike McTighe

    You’re only claiming it has nothing to do with the story, but the writers of Punisher comics have referenced it a lot, and wouldn’t agree with you.

  • Guest2

    Implying people that don’t share your opinion don’t read comics is a pretty weak argument, and that’s what I was referring to

  • James Bishop

    That’s nice.

  • LillardFan420

    I hope you’re not expecting me place any value on the views and beliefs of Garth freaking Ennis, second worst human in comics next to Millar.

  • JokersNuts

    As a white boy who loves the FF and has read HUNDREDS of FF comics including Stan and Jacks brilliant run… I am TOTALLY on board with casting black actors in these roles. There is no problem with it at all.

  • Mike McTighe

    Yes, there were several non Aryan officials who were “Red Skull” like (of course Red Skull being a fictional Nazi, and just representing Nazism in general). The notion of Nazi’s being all about blonde hair and blue eyes is sort of a Western smear, sort of like Napoleon being short (when he was average height). There were many Nazis who believed in eugenic and some who didn’t. Eugenics, and social Darwinism was all the rage in the 1920s-1940s. If you read the Great Gatsby, or other literature about that era from American it was riddled with it. Most Americans felt a race/ethnic war was brewing, and it was no different in Germany. Hitler just capitalized on feelings that were already present. Nazism is first a foremost a German political movement, and was about empowering Germany, not so much all the other stuff. That was just their plan for getting Germany back on top again, and just like slavery people tacked on a ton of explanations for it, most of which were far more simple and dumbed down than what was actually happening. That’s sort of a wider side discussion though.

  • Mike McTighe

    Millar, who ironically is the advisor to this FF movie.

  • Mike McTighe

    I agree with James, as a fan you can’t really pick and chose the aspects of a character which are important or are not important. Writers have the freedom to do this because they do, fans do not. If someone thinks the race is not important they are simply expressing an opinion, not necessarily one based in any sort of reality.

  • LillardFan420

    I heard. It’s pretty disappointing. Though I loved his Ultimate FF run, and I REALLY loved Marvel 1985. I think he needs a strong editorial hand to keep him from just writing people being jerks to each other and then exploding into buckets of gore.

  • Mike McTighe

    That to me is the oddest aspect of this. They are changing what worked.

  • Mike McTighe

    Well classic Fantastic Four is built around the space race, and the unknowns of space travel which is not something that really means anything post-Challenger days. In fact their origin may even be a bit of a smack in the face to those who have died going up into space. As it turns out when your rocket ship f***s up, you do not get superpowers so much as you burn up in the atmosphere.
    Similar to the changes with Hulk, who was entirely built around a fear of what atomic bombs would do, and now he experiments with genetics or something.
    So I think it’s pretty hard to divorce Fantastic Four from it’s era unlike Avengers or even X-Men. Even with X-Men, sure it’s Civil Rights, but someone always is fighting for rights, so it’s not like it has to be the 1960s.
    But the Fantastic Four are adventurers, like Indiana Jones, they’re also like a family sitcom and astronauts. That’s all stuff popularized in the 1960s. It’s overall just far more of a throwback. I think also probably why it’s popularity in general has waned.

  • Mike McTighe

    Where did I say it was “my opinion”. I never referred to myself. I also used the word “or”.

  • Collin

    The only reason I don’t like this is that by making Johnny black what happens to Susan? They want 1 black character as a token, if they’re not willing to make his sister Black. They probably don’t want her to be black anyway considering that she had a relation with a white male protagonist.

    See what I mean, nothing about this adds up from a story aspect. I feel like Michael is just being cast for the need of a minority token. Rather then the context of the story, or even his acting prowess.

  • wildstorm

    How would people react if in they changed Black Panther to a white guy? I mean the story would mostly take place on Africa so we would need a token white guy right?

  • Melwing

    Race is not in integral part of Johnny Storm’s creation; it was merely the racial standard at the time. In other comments you are making you are talking about race changing Black Panther or other characters from black to white- but those characters DID have race as an integral part of their story and creation.

    You are either extremely delusional or a devoted troll.

  • Mike McTighe

    There are way more white guys in Africa than just a few tokens. There’d be more than just “token” white dudes, among just about every other ethnicity.

  • Mike McTighe

    Jessica Alba was a race swap. They just made her look white.

  • Mike McTighe

    Not at all really. In Ultimates Red Skull isn’t even a Nazi, he’s a Neo-Nazi son of the American Captain America. You’re claim that certain characters are “off limits” as opposed to Human Torch is based on an entirely arbitrary set of rules.

  • Mike McTighe

    Actually they aren’t new characters so much as once a studio owns the rights they become their character to do with what they wish. Generally making a character resemble the original is simply a fan service, but if the writer of the movie, or the directors didn’t want to, there would be nothing binding them to do so.

  • Mike McTighe

    As I said above, I have worked in film and television, and continue to do so. If you follow film you’ll notice a lot of similar casts and similar director/actor pairings. Sometimes a director hasn’t worked with someone, usually famous, and wants to, or they just reeeeaaaaaallllllly have this urging to bring an unknown up, probably from their indie days. Once you’ve worked in the industry you see these things from a different perspective. Usually when you hire a director and producer you’ve unknowingly hired [some of] your cast.

  • Mike McTighe

    The only reason it wouldn’t make sense to have Tom Hanks play Malcom X is the backlash that would generate, otherwise you see that stuff all the time.

  • Mike McTighe

    Claiming that people who want a character that is traditionally drawn as a white guy played by a white actor as being racism is setting the racism bar awfully low.

  • The Dread Pirate Steve #812

    Characters like Johny Storm, to succeed, HAD to be straight and white and religion neutral. Now it’s 2014 and every single character being that won’t fly when you need to appeal to as many people as you do to make a movie successful. If that means a Black Johnny Storm or an Asian Carol Danvers, well then let’s just face reality with our big boy pants on. You can do adaptations of any of the classic stories to screen and not change them appreciably to have actors of a different race play them. It comes down to do you want anyone besides the comic readers to see a movie, and we couldn’t even cover the budget of an indie film, or do you want the biggest success possible?

  • bandoogiemanz

    Personally, I wouldn’t want to see a white Luke Cage, but Mike is has a point. However, the question of the financial success of a movie including a white Cage or a non-white Red Skull is up for debate.

  • Ron

    The Ultimates is meant to have things signifigantly changed from the regular Marvel Universe. There are lots of differences, so that arguement doesn’t feel like it has a place here.
    The only times I feel it’s off-limits in movies, cartoons or TV shows is if it’s either historically inaccurate or it is a key piece of that characters history.

  • Ron

    I agree with the fact that Tonto should not have been played by Johnny Depp. Being Native American is a key part of his character. Johnny being white however, is not.

  • Ron

    Yeah but that was the casting, not the ethnicity. Chris Evans is good in that role and if Chris Evans was black it would’ve been just as good. His skin color did not affect his performance.

  • the truth

    so ur telling me ur ok with Luke Cage, Blade, and Black Panther being white?

  • WPWW

    Diversity is destroying our country. This thug boy should not be playing a super hero. Think of our children! Wake up!

  • ziza9

    As a black man and long time comics fan, I’m generally against this type of race changing. I love seeing characters that look like me on the screen and in my favorite comics. But I prefer the creation of new characters over changing the skin color of established ones. There is nothing inherent in Johnny Storm’s character that says, hey he has to be a white guy. There is, however, a visual record/a visual reference if you will that informs the look of the character over the years. When I think of the FF movie I want to watch, I want to see the characters I am familiar with on screen. This would hold true if a Static, Night Thrasher, Cyborg, or Hardware film were made. Again, I would prefer it if comic companies would focus on developing new, strong characters of color instead of just throwing us a bone by switching the pigmentation of already established characters. I think it does work in Thor because they aren’t specifically Norsemen themselves in the films, and Elba owns any role he is in. Legacy characters I don’t have as much of an issue with. The passing of the torcht/mantle is an established part of comic book history. So the race or sex of the one bequeathed the mantle doesn’t bother me.

  • ElWaldorf

    I took issue with how they made Green Lantern, didn’t matter if it was Hal or John, that movie was terrible.

  • ziza9

    Studio and comic company could work together to develop an entirely new property that would appeal to a diverse, wide-ranging audience. That would be great. New characters, new name, something not mired in the continuity of the past. But I know that studios see that as too much of a risk. It’s easier to buy an existing property with a core fanbase attached and make the changes they want to attract more of the general audience. But I would prefer the first approach any day of the week.

  • ziza9

    I’d be pissed.

  • Ron

    I’m pretty sure that posting on a mssage board is posting your opinion even if you don’t explicitly state that.

  • the truth

    crazy thought, if we are changing whatever….
    adopted siblings
    female dr doom
    instead of changing established characters

    why not add a 5th member and make him black….

  • the truth

    u nailed it with this

    “again, I would prefer it if comic companies would focus on developing
    new, strong characters of color instead of just throwing us a bone by
    switching the pigmentation of already established characters.”

  • the truth

    problem is most writers now a days are a bunch of hacks

  • Mike McTighe

    But he’s not, so that point is complete irrelevant.

  • Mike McTighe

    I don’t know about Red Skull simply because you probably could get away with him being black since you never truly see his face anyways, but white Luke Cage would probably be a flop or succeed in spite of itself. It would generate a ton of controversy and probably alienate the audience it would draw the most viewers from anyways.

  • Mike McTighe

    Why would that be the case at all? You’ve never heard of third person narrative?

  • http://drewmelbourne.com/ Drew Melbourne

    The real issue is that white characters are significantly over-represented in comics versus real world (American) population. If all demographics were represented at appropriate level (roughly what we see in society) then all of this would be reasonably debatable. At that point, if they wanted to do a white Luke Cage, it’d be fine, because there’d still be plenty of other headlining black superheroes.

    On the plus side, if everyone’s patient, we’ll probably have this all worked out in 50-60 years.

  • Irfon

    Michael b Jordan not saying if he’s in it or not means nothing. Condiser the following. How’s name do you always see on articles about this Fantastic Four film? Any actor would be a fool to deny it with all this free publicity. First thing I did after reading was google the guy. So, even if he’s not in it, it’s not in his best intrest to say he’s not

  • http://drewmelbourne.com/ Drew Melbourne

    David, you’re not racist, but you are enabling INSTITUTIONALIZED racism which has driven the comic book industry for 80+ years. If these characters were created today and they were 95% white guys, the industry would be rightfully pilloried. That it happened 50 and 80 years ago makes it more understandable, but it doesn’t mean it isn’t problematic.

    There aren’t any great solutions to this problem. (It’s really hard to introduce ANY new characters, and when new minority characters are introduced, a large chunk of the white readership reacts negatively because they believe that these are “token” characters.)

    Ultimately, a Marvel and a DC universe that better reflects the real-world diversity of the American people and the world at large is good for everyone. And until we get to that point, there will be a lot of awkward, uncomfortable conversations like this.

  • James Bishop

    “Racial Standard”. That’s rich. So because Johnny was drawn, created and concepted by a white guys in 1961 that’s now a “racial standard”. And because Black Panther was created (by white men?) to be an African king, you assumed that their choice to make him black was a part of his story? Are you sure the creators didn’t use stereotyping and geography to cast the jungle king? You dear, are a revisionist and a worse kind of liberal troll who believes that our disagreement has anything to do with race. Have fun picking and choosing when race applies to a character’s makeup. Then fuck off.

  • James Bishop

    Thank you sir. I have nothing against the actor, but this seems as unnecessary change for change’s sake and nothing more than a dollar grab by unimaginative studio folks. I’d like to see the character maintain his history.

  • CodeDisQus

    SO many comments, my only issue is, why go back to the fantastic four? I mean, they don’t exactly fit in with the avengers and the cinematic universe that Marvel is building, granted, neither to GoTG, but surely a hero that hasn’t had the limelight would be better. Since we’re on the ubject of race, why not have a black lead, not because he/she is black, but because its different. I mean, black Panther would be so sick! Filmed in africa, and all, I’d be down with that!!
    It’s true that black heroes are under represented in the movies, but let’s face it, there are a LOT more white heroes to choose from in comparsion to white heroes!

    Either way I still want to see a Black Panther movie because

    1. T’Challa is so badass
    2. T’Challa is a badass King
    3. T’Challa is a badass king and an Avenger
    4. T’Challa is Badass fighter who can go toe to toe with Captain America, is almost as smart as Tony Stark, is as super spy like as Black Widow and is all round badass….

    so yeah….he’s badass!

  • Tanath Fedo

    Too old! They are making the same mistake as they did with Evans. Johnny should be just out of High School. Why do these movies always cast actors way older than the character? If it’s early in the FF story, Johnny should be 17 or 18, Sue about 24, and Reed and Ben around 30. I’m also not too thrilled with the color switch, seams like pandering to political correctness, but I can deal with it as long as it’s done well, with good actors and script.

  • Tanath Fedo

    …not to mention it would make a lot more sense for him to play the Black Panther in it, and then spin off to his own movie… which might be what they are actually doing, and are just starting some shit on the internet to hype up the reboot

  • http://www.spinoffonline.com Kevin Melrose

    This is Fox, not Marvel.

  • http://www.spinoffonline.com Kevin Melrose

    Marvel has the rights to both Black Panther and the Inhumans, with Kevin Feige confirming in October that BP movie is in development: http://spinoff.comicbookresources.com/2013/10/23/black-panther-movie-is-absolutely-in-development-says-marvels-kevin-feige/

  • LillardFan420

    Cry into your 5XL black t-shirt, relic.

  • Guest2

    Right, that was the point I’m making. I don’t think it’s a bad thing that Trank is using actors he’s familiar with and trusts, I think it’s a smart move

  • Guest2

    So you want Marvel Studios to make the next Fantastic Four movie? You do realise that they are the ones that made Heimdall and Nick Fury black in the movies, right? I’m pretty sure you’ve complained about that somewhere

    Maybe you just have to accept that Hollywood creatives aren’t as concerned with the race of a character when it doesn’t inform their personality

  • Guest2

    I’m fairly familiar with the history of the Nazis and WW2, I do understand that Hitler didn’t insist upon only ideal Aryans as high ranking Nazis. I might argue with your description of Nazism as being primarily about restoring German pride. I’d say that might be why German’s initially voted for the Nazis, and it might be a significant factor in the continued support of Hitler’s regime. But Nazism as an ideology and at the upper echelons of the Nazi government was about decidedly more than simple nationalism.

    My point is, my knowledge is at mostly a macro level, I don’t know much about specific Nazi officers or officials beyond the big players (Himmler, Ribbentrop, Goebbels etc). So I was curious as to which specific leading Nazis weren’t white, because I’d certainly be interested in reading more about their background

  • Ron

    Yes I have heard of third person narrative. It’s when there are statements made that don’t use “I” or “we” and you started your sentance with “I”. Man you are so pretentious.

  • Guest2

    I’d also say that because the core team is so strongly tied together, it’s hard to regenerate interest in the FF by adding new characters.
    In terms of ‘cosmic-rays=superpowers’, I agree that it wouldn’t necessarily fly nowadays. But I wouldn’t object to their 1960s experimental spacecraft somehow crossing into a different dimension a la the Ultimate Universe. Less disrespectful and pseudo-scientific enough to “believably” give people superpowers

  • Ron

    Here are some comic book movie roles I have enjoyed: Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury, Michael Clarke Duncan as Kingpin, Billy Dee Williams as Harvey Dent, Laurence Fishburne as Perry White, Idris Elba as Heimdall, Michael Clarke Duncan as Kingpin and Tom Hardy as Bane. I would’ve seen Donald Glover as Spidey if given a chance too. I also liked Colin Ferrell as Bullseye. See what they have in common?

  • Ron

    Black Panther turning white would be a totally different character. Blade (who a lot of people have used as an example) would not be in my opinion.

  • Ron

    How is it irrelevant? Chris Evans worked. Not because he was white or black or hispanic or chinese but because of his acting in that role. Him being white had nothing to do with it.

  • Ron

    Idris Elba would be a freaking kick-ass Batman.

  • Ron

    I accept white Blade.

  • Ron

    All your arguements were made null and void to me as soon as I read that you’ve reffered to Nazi representation in Western culture being a smear. Sorry that Western civilization has tried to smear the good name of the Nazi party. I bid you good day sir.

  • Ron

    Now this has only reminded me how much I liked Billy Dee as Harvey Dent.
    He would’ve been a much better Two-Face than Tommy Lee Jones, but at least Tommy Lee Jones was white, therefore more truthful to the character. See how stupid that sounds?

  • Robert

    Political correctness has its merits, but this is not one of those cases. There is a lot wrong with changing the ethnicity of established, iconic, characters from many perspectives. Some of my thoughts:

    1. It changes a great deal about the FF, so stop being coy. Johnny and Sue are brother and sister and this has played a vital part in the teams internal dynamic over the years and is the binding force behind the “FF as family” aspect that makes the team unique. How anyone can say that obliterating the blood relation aspect isn’t important boggles my mind.

    2. Color-blind casting isn’t true progress and it’s actually cynical. Where are the Black Panther or Luke Cage movies? Right. We’re getting an Ant-Man movie before Black Panther because “progressive Hollywood” doesn’t think a black lead could support a film, regardless of the fact Black Panther is an infinitely more interesting character. (I’d be ranting and fuming if it happened, but to use the logic displayed here, Black Panther need not be African. You could move him to some other exotic location, like South America, change his ethnicity, morph Wakanda into Maztica, and the core concept would still “work.” Well, it would work for those with no respect for the source material at least.)

    3. The proper way to increase diversity is to create and not destroy. Why couldn’t Sam Jackson have been a different character that served the same purpose as Nick Fury? Why couldn’t he have replaced Fury, for instance? Why the need to “ride the coattails” of established white characters to ramrod and force diversity in a hamfisted way that doesn’t respect the source material and pleases nobody? You can make a new character because the mainstream doesn’t know in the first place and you avoid irritating fans who like the actual characters. Why not cast the FF properly and cast Jordan as a new character? Because that would take actual creativity, folks, and that’s too hard.

  • Garry Boldwater

    A bigger factor about the Johnny Storm character dynamic is that he has always been portrayed as the embodiment of an entitled rich kid who had no idea what the outside world was really like. Rising above that to be a better deeper person than he would have been without exposure to his powers and the viewpoints of those with broader views & experiences.

    If it ends up being Jordan and Emmy Rossum, it isn’t going to come of as particularly progressive use of biracial siblings – the immature trust-fund sibling coasting on the more serious & ambitious white sister. Of course, this might be a page 1 rewrite, tho. Ben Grimm might not be Jewish or working class. Reed might be crazy like the Ultimate version. Johnny Storm might be a leftie who just got out of the Peace Corps.

  • tenshi yuki

    You would have a point IF the comic book audience actually supported minority characters, but they don’t. All but minority characters that are based on legacy characters get there issues caned in less than 20 issues, sometimes even less than 10. Look at the current comic book offerings and you’ll see exactly what I’m talking about. So as I’ve always said, something is going to have to give. The comic book demographic is 90% older white males where many doesn’t support minotiry books, on the other hand the movie audience is over 30% minotirites. The two demographics are clearly going to crash because expectations are going to be different. So until comic book audience actually support minority books, marvel is going to have little choice but change characters ethnicity.

  • John Harmon

    ” promise you, if/when a Latina actress inherets the role of Storm, or
    the next Nick Fury is ethnically of East Asian origin ( Parminder
    Nagra!), those whose model for the characters are Halle Berry/Ororo and
    the Ultimate Nick Fury will feel a loss as well.”

    Well first of all, those characters aren’t going anywhere. They still exist in the pages of the comics. Secondly, we DID get a Latina Sue Storm. Jessica Alba? But nobody cared then either, because as some people said “she looks white enough”. Which…is a whole other kind of racism.

  • John Harmon

    “Well I hope Johnny’s “whiteness” had nothing to do with his stories. But
    there’s no reason whatsoever to change him now, and that is the point.
    It’s not a ‘why can’t we’ or ‘why not be open to it’… There’s just no
    justifiable reason to do it.”

    No justifiable reason? How about creative liberty? How about the actor fitting the essence of the character, regardless of race? I suppose non-creatives might never understand this though.

    “He has been who he is for 53 years.”

    No he hasn’t. “He” isn’t real. He’s scribbles on pieces of paper.

  • John Harmon

    You know as soon as someone says “political correct agenda” they have nothing to offer. This is a nonsense argument, spouted by people who just want the freedom to be jerks and prefer things to be closer to a time when straight white men ruled everything.

  • John Harmon

    Yes. White was absolutely the “Default” race back then, because white people were and still are the majority in this country, so of course it’s not surprising for a big group of white men to think white as the standard, even subconsciously.

    Black Panther’s race was a huge part of his story. He wasn’t even revealed to be black until later, and everybody in the Avengers was taken aback by it. Characters like Black Panther and Luke Cage were created specifically for shaking up the status quo and to bring about talks of race and discrimination. Stan Lee knew a thing or two about that, being Jewish after all and having to change his last name (as many Jewish people working in the media did back then) just to get a job.

  • John Harmon

    Ah I see. You reduce the arbitrary nature of casting a black actor in a traditionally white role as the same as rape. So you’re that kind of a person (terrible). Thanks.

  • John Harmon

    Of course the comic has changed with the times. The origin has been tweaked, the characters have changed, Sue actually matters as a character now as opposed to mostly standing off to the side until the male characters fix everything. To argue otherwise is beyond myopic.

  • John Harmon

    I was to believe this was satirical.

  • antpooh

    I was ready to crap on you till I read argument # 2 (excellent point!), but then you lost me with #3. in the Ultimate universe, Nick Fury is portrayed as Samuel L. Jackson. If they could get Samuel L. Jackson for that role why would they not go with the newer Black interpretation of the character.

  • antpooh

    Let’s be honest, Heimdall’s casting was very insignificant to the plot and nobody really cared.

  • Alex

    I have an idea. For every actor that say’s “it is time to evolve,times are different” when it comes to changing an established character’s race simply for the sake of making a quota and showing diversity how about we really alter things around.

    Let’s do a complete remake of “roots” with an all asian cast playing african’s. The slave masters played by eskimo’s.

    Or perhaps a remake of Spartacus with a bollywood actor and the rest of the cast can be vietnamese.

    I an all for diversity,but to make it so forced that we out and out lie about established character’s race is stupid.

  • Liam

    Who is this guy?

  • Liam

    This guy should play Johnny Storm. It would make the racists happy to see a black man on fire.

  • Mister K

    Don’t like the idea of a black actor portraying Johnny Storm. Too forced. What’s next? Sue Storm a lesbian?

  • Rafael Buxo

    If times are changing, create new characters according to the times.

  • Roger_S

    I’m with you on that one. I’d love to see him as Bond also. The problem is the outcry would be massive if fanboys have their way.

  • nld3

    That doesn’t mean people don’t like the old Fury.

  • nld3

    Exactly! I want as close to the 50 year old source material as possible. Black Panther is black in the Marvel Universe & Johnny Storm is white in the MU. Lets keep them that way.

  • Chuck777

    Fox still has the rights to the Fantastic Four (along with the X-Men).

  • Chuck777

    Or just replace Johnny.

  • Samurai Knights

    Agreed. This is an insult to The actor if anything

  • oblivious247

    Race is pivotal to Roots. It’s not pivotal to the character of the Human Torch. I’d prefer he was white like the comics, but making him black is only a surface change so whatever.

  • Ron

    Actually, my comic book friends and I were more interested in Heimdall after seeing him on film.

  • daponte_04

    Google + Your Question = There’s your answer!

  • DelsinRowe

    I don’t like them messing around with the Storm family. Adopted, half siblings, it’s not necessary.

  • DelsinRowe

    I’m a fan of Jackson, Fishburne and Elba in those roles. The rest were just meh in my opinion.

  • Liam

    I can go for an Asian cast for Roots.

  • Shin Tshung Wong

    “The Black Panther is the king of an African nation with a lineage stretching back centuries.”
    What prevents them from changing the backstory: say the Black Panther is from a white European family
    that rules an African nation as kings? To the best of my knowledge, that did happen in real life at least once, albeit in a South-East Asian nation: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/White_Rajahs

  • Chuck777

    How is it racist to want to see your favorite character represented on the big screen the way he is portrayed in the comics?

  • Chuck777

    Johnny Depp claims to be part Cherokee.

    Cleopatra was a Ptolemy of Greek decent. Casting a white person is not a stretch or a race swap (although there are historians that theorize she may have been part Nubian, so there is that).

    Airbender is a good example of the dangers that come with race swapping – loads of hardcore fans boycotted the film.

  • Chuck777

    They said Chris Evans would be good for the role and, honestly, he was not.

  • Chuck777

    If Marvel or DC really wanted to push a non-legacy minority character, they could. They choose not to.

    Look at the success Cyborg and Luke Cage have had. The Big Two could easily pull off much greater feats if they really put their minds to it and had a long term plan.

    Its not the fans’ racism that blocks these characters from becoming popular, its the higher ups in the company that don’t put forth the effort to make new minority characters popular.

  • Chuck777

    It’ll be because the whole film is another gigantic Fox turd. :(

  • kfrye

    Sadly. I hope it is good though

  • guest

    Well, if diversity is the issue, note that prior FF director Tim Story is African American, while Michael B Jordan’s buddy Trank is a Person Of Paleness. So the black guy gets the shaft, while Trank benefits from white male privilege.

    Note that Johnny Storm was the second Human Torch, after Jim Hammond.

    Think what’s getting annoying is that Jordan is starting to display LaBouefian levels of egotism and self-importance. His Johnny Storm is different than Kirby & Lee’s – but not implicitly better.

  • Guest

    Discussion over Alba centered on the awfulness of her work. There’s vast diversity in Ibero-Americans, from Fujimori to Gisele Bundchen. There’s nothing unusual about a blonde, blue-eyed Ibero-American.

    Now, the lack of diversity in Univision and Telemundo, THAT’S a story…

    Again, if the attitude from Jordan was “I can’t believe how much fun it’s going to be to play the Human Torch!!”, we wouldn’t be having this discussion
    Jordan’s highlighting the change in a political way, as though there was something wrong with Johnny Storm, and his is better.

    “Psych” featured Mexican-American and African-American leads, and got on with entertaining, rather than calling attention to the ethnicity of its leads. Colorblind, inclusive, and matter-of-fact. That’s progress.

  • Guest

    Johnny Storm was created to make money for Marvel Comics owners, and to entertain young kids, overwhelmingly male. Power Man came about to capitalize on the popularity of Blaxploitation movies lile “Shaft” and “Superfly”, not to be “Apache Chief” on the Superfriends

  • guest

    And pink-, green- and purple-haired characters are vastly overreprented in manga and anime. Because it’s entertainment, not a bureaucratic exercise. African Americans were overrepresented in Milestone cpmocs. Jim Lee turned a British WASP onto a Japanese woman. There is equality of access and opportunity. That’s progress, and that’s what matters.

  • Voice of Reason

    I have no problems with an african american Human Torch. But I would have problems with him and his sister being totally different ethnicities. Choose a direction and stick with it. The adoptive or half-sibling explanation seems like a cop out. Almost an unnecessary device JUST to force the whole sibling thing, unless it’s relevant to the story.

    Jordan also strikes me as a serious personality, although I confess I haven’t seen all his work. I hope he can pull off the wisecracking jerk that Storm should be.

  • Angel Colon

    i am puerto rican. a lifetime lover of comic books. it is true that there is no color balance in comics. the only true way to solve this is to CREATE new minority characters that don’t revolve around older character legacies and/or replacing a well established character with a race swap to pass as a “fair attempt” at equality or innovation.

    make dope NEW characters for this goal. anything else is lazy art and an insult to characters that have been around for 50 plus years that have earned the right to be further built on and more masterfully rounded than just simply wiping the slate clean in the name of a social crusade…

  • Shadowulf McCullough

    Nick Fury was also modeled after the Ultimate universe version which was changed to look like Samuel L Jackson in 2002 in The Ultimates initially without his consent but after seeing him Sam contacted Marvel to Secure he was cast as Nick Fury in future movie that would include the character. Idris Elba was chosen by The director and his long time friend Kenneth Branagh not by Marvel. Johnny Storm is an established intellectual property has been since 1961 changing him does not make any sense. So before you call me a racist or a bigot save it not interested but as an artist changing an established IP when you are trying to reboot a franchise is not a smart idea in any sense of the word.

  • Shadowulf McCullough

    you said it before I did thank you

  • cryhwks

    It’s stupid they didn’t learn anything from the King Pin mess up it wasn’t that Michael Clarke Duncan was a bad actor it was they missed the entire point of that character. The King Pin is a rich fat white guy that’s who he is & they didn’t get that.
    It’s they same with Johnny they don’t get it. If there was some white dude playing Black Panther or Luke Cage I’d have the same problem It’s just like with the recent news about Ant-Man they don’t get it either.

  • The Dread Pirate Steve #812

    I’m talking about increasing diversity. You’re just suggesting the opposite…

  • oblivious247

    The screw up with Kingpin was not a matter of the character’s race but piss poor writing. The key trait of kingpin is not that he’s white, but that he’s a crime boss. Black Panther needs to be black because it’s a part of his character. That is not the case with Kingpin.

  • http://drewmelbourne.com/ Drew Melbourne

    None of your examples counter the point that white male characters are dramatically over-represented in American comics. (Your argument is basically, sure X happens 99% of the time, but Y happens 1% of the time, so you should be happy with your 1%.)

    Access and opportunity are nice, but if the lion share of your comics feature (and more importantly, are pitched to) adult white men, then your “equality of access and opportuniy” is an illusion.

    I understand the instinct to defend the status quo. We’re presumably all here because we love comics. But I want my comics (and the industry) to continually get bigger and better.

  • http://drewmelbourne.com/ Drew Melbourne

    Nobody (I think?) is saying that fans are racist. Just that they’re extremely conservative, in the sense that they want to keep reading the same comics they’ve been reading forever.

    The difference between a Cyborg comic (which I’d love to see) and a Superman comic is: If the Cyborg comic is great, it’ll probably sell well, but if it drops in quality, it’ll get cancelled. Superman will continue to sell whoever is working on it.

    (The same rule of thumb can be applied to most new comics, regardless of their lead.)

    It’s not about racism. It’s about *institutionalized advantage* that originates from a more racist era.

    (That said, this is only part of the conversation. The other part of the conversation is writing more comics that appeal beyond a very narrow demographic and expand the pool of readers and of future comic pros. More diversity in content and appeal means a more diverse readership and more diverse creator pool. It’s a big circle.)

  • darius035

    My Uncle Gabriel got a stunning blue Dodge Charger SRT8 from
    only workin part time on a home pc… hop over to here B­u­z­z­3­2­.­ℂ­o­m

  • The Griffinator

    Doesn’t Hollywood get it, yet? Making an established white character black to hide the fact that most of today’s main heroes were created during racist times, is no less racist than making Luke Cage white. It’s racially motivated one way or another.

    As a black man, I get offended when they do this. Because it’s like Marvel’s throwing their hands up and saying “We’re not black, we have no black friends, and we just don’t know how to do ‘black’ so… here, you can have Nick Fury and Johnny Storm. Are we cool now?”

    No, we’re NOT cool. It’s akin to a white boy saying “I can’t be racist, one of my best friends is black!” Is that what you think making Kingpin or Johnny Storm black on the big screen will do? Give you something to point at to deflect the attention from comic books being a white medium?

    Give me Luke Cage. Give me Spawn. Give me T’Challa and Storm. Hell, give me goddamn Fat Albert. Give me actual black characters that reached their potential on their own, as black characters. Not this insincere “make him black after all the white boys adopted him as a white character” crap.

    If comic companies can’t do black, they need to own that. And if they feel this is a problem, they need to fix this problem at the root. Create compelling black characters.

    If this is too hard for the white man to do, then start hiring black men to do it. Oh.. are black men incapable of writing comics? Does their presence in the office make people uncomfortable? Maybe comic book companies need to look there.

    But a white office creating white characters for a white audience suddenly turning one of those characters black so that their big budget movie will make even more money from black wallets is downright insulting to me as a black man.

    White kids deserve a white Johnny Storm every bit as much as black kids deserve black characters they can look up to as well. This isn’t about these characters being created in the 60’s during more racist times… Deadpool and Wolverine weren’t created in the 60’s, and they’re no more racially diverse than the Fantastic Four were.

    This is all about masking the fact that comic books are a white product made by white people for white people, with some exceptions. That’s reality, not racism. Does the NBA being predominantly black make it more difficult for white kids to root for their favorite NBA team? Of course not.

    But what if a Michael Jordan movie cast a white Michael Jordan?

    You’re starting to get the picture.

  • Mark Stansfield

    And the Old Nick Fury is still around

  • Mike McTighe

    There’s just a lot more fans, period. Since the 1960s, and in Batman’s case, the 1940s, people have become accustomed in a very unavoidable way to what Bond and Batman look like. Batman’s look has barely changed, so has Bond’s. Just look at the outcry that still exists because Craig is blond, and multiply that by a thousand.

  • Mike McTighe

    Chris Evans is a person. You can’t simply dissect aspects away from him.

  • Mike McTighe

    No, it wouldn’t. Or at least if you’re going to argue Johnny being black isn’t, you’re in effect arguing it’s no different here.

  • Thedude3445

    Actually that was really confusing for a while for me. John Stewart is THE Green Lantern for an entire generation of kids, and Hal Jordan is just… Not as cool. In any of the cartoons and movies starring him he just seems like The Flash from JLU, but less funny.

  • Thedude3445

    Universal still owns Namor? No way. Why would they keep the damn thing after all these years?

  • Thedude3445

    They did have that What If comic where Black Panther was revealed to be white and the Avengers got pissed because their token black member wasn’t black. It’s possible but having a white guy be the king of a secret African Nation of a bunch of black people would be…. really fuckin’ racist lol.

  • Thedude3445

    a looooooooong time? It was 8 years.

  • Shadowulf McCullough

    See that is my issue with the actor Idris Elba did not politicize himself playing Heimdall and the first thing Micheal does is “Comic books in general were established when we didn’t have civil rights,(Fantastic four was first published in 1961 first Civi rights act law was penned in 1957 and Truman started first civil rights commisson in 1945) for the most part. So there weren’t a lot of comic book characters who were geared towards us, period. We weren’t the market that comic books were made for in the beginning(Black Panther, Gabe Jones, Falcon,Luke Cage, Deathlok, Bronze Tiger, Black Lightning, Goliath, Misty Knight)

  • Thedude3445

    Thank you so much for the Nepotism argument. It’s almost certainly the actual reason why but people just want to believe it’s “PC bullshit” (sic).

  • Thedude3445

    It’s logically possible, but super racist when you think for just a second about the implications. Does the Second Wave of Colonialism, and Social Darwinism, ring any bells for you?

    Though on an unrelated note, the Marvel Movies need to visit Southeast Asia because that’s such an awesome region of the world that never gets any spotlight.

  • Thedude3445

    Wait, you’re using the “director’s friend” argument for Idris Elba, to argue against Michael B Jordan, who is good friends with…. the director?

  • Thedude3445

    The fact that there is such uproar over the changing of a character’s race to no plot differences is a pretty serious indicator that the comic book market, at least with superhero comics, is getting older and less diverse as time goes on. I keep reading over and over again that this is all “PC bullshit” and that the only black characters that should appear in the movies are the ones that are already black (even though most comic fans couldn’t name ten black superheroes from Marvel that weren’t created to be supporting characters like Falcon and War Machine).

    Also I remember you from some other article… I can’t remember which though…

  • AL

    The change has nothing to do with progression or racism or anything else like that. It’s all because the last 2 FF movies sucked ass and the studio is trying to change as much as possible to get as far away from those 2 stinkers as they possibly can. They are hoping that changing it up will make everyone forget they screwed the pooch the last 2 times.

  • the truth

    “You would have a point IF the comic book audience actually supported minority characters”

    obviously u are out of date with the comic book audience community

    have u ever heard of a show called Arrow
    u know that little show about green arrow, that brings diversity to an all white comic series, by adding a FAN FAVORITE character Diggle.

    Add Diversity without changing established character ppl have fallen in love with

  • AL

    That’s how i felt when i watched the JL cartoon and saw that they used John instead of Hal. I’ve been into the comics since i was a kid, i was so confused that they used a third tier lantern instead of the first or second.

  • The Griffinator

    That is the most absurd thing I will probably read on the internet today.

  • James Bishop

    Bravo. While I disagree that race even has to be a label affixed to whose medium this is, this and Ziza’s comments are the crux. I’d like to posit that we should look at your comment and modify this:
    “If this is too hard for the white man to do, then start hiring black men to do it.”; to this: “If this is too hard for the current unimaginative hack writing staff, hire writers that are capable”. The FF are, to the chagrin of people who have commented here and don’t care, white. That’s reality. I want Cage. I want T’Challa. I want Bill Foster Goliath. I’m getting ass-kicking Sam Wilson! If these options don’t sit well or aren’t good enough for all the modernist politically correct trendsetters, then they should probably pick up a pen and make up something new to satisfy themselves instead of revisionist nonsense.

  • James Bishop

    No, he’s not just a crime boss, he’s an archetypical Mafioso ganster crimeboss of Irish descent in the Big Apple. Even stretching the bounds of plausible suspension of disbelief, the casting choice exemplifies only the size and strength – and that’s it. Race was relevant and you’re just choosing to ignore it.

  • James Bishop

    Sorry to break this to you, but you’re wrong. This man’s post as well as a few others here are spot on. Make something new, no one has an issue. But changing history to fit apologist politics is flat wrong and disrespects the medium and the people who supported it.

  • The Griffinator

    There are two schools of thought when it comes to this issue : 1) Highlight racial biases in the hopes of showing America what’s wrong with the country, and 2) Use art to present the country the way we would ideally like to see it, until it becomes a reality.

    I don’t believe there’s a “right” or “wrong” way of doing it. Reginald Hudlin and Spike Lee prefer option #1. It was difficult for me to read Hudlin’s Black Panther a few years ago because every issue, every page… hell, every motherf’ing panel reminded you that white people are bad. Especially during the Civil War crossover. It’s like the race issue was the only reason this book existed.

    I, personally, prefer approach #2 – which is the one Bendis takes. For all the crap levied at him, as a black man, I loved how he used Luke Cage. Bendis didn’t constantly remind us that Cage was black. The readers did, and made jokes about Bendis wishing he were born a black man… which is fine, some of those jokes were pretty funny. But look at what Bendis put on the page. It’s the world as it should be, instead of how it is.

    Tell me, which of the two approaches will help the next generation eliminate racism?

    White people raising their fist in the air, yelling “Black Power!” is an embarrassment to all of us. Going out of your way to show people you’re not racist is racist.

    You eliminate racism by acting like it’s not there. Eventually, it won’t be. And while I understand that not all of my fellow brothers agree with my opinion, I’m sure they respect it as much as I respect Hudlin’s and Spike Lee’s. Even if I disagree with it.

  • James Bishop

    You sound rather uneducated to say what you said and take his comment out of context.

  • AL

    You obviously have no idea how movie studios operate if think that’s absurd.

  • James Bishop

    Is that what you think of art? That it can be repainted at a whim because the appreciation of it is transitory to your opinion and meaningless as scribbles? The character is established and major. Creative license has its limits. As far as non-creative, you obviously know zero about me (as I would expect since I’m no more famous than you), but I’ve been a creative consultant, writer, and illustrator for many years and it’s my professional opinion that this constant pandering is needlessly causing division in a fan base that already has a weak medium. You might take a step back because your comment is out of depth.

  • AL

    It’s all about money and if they don’t change things they are afraid people will just associate it with the other ones and will be less apt to see it. They want everyone to know that this is a completely different movie.

  • James Bishop

    and? I care about the director and my lone opinions relationship to him why?

  • The Griffinator

    Repeating it doesn’t make it sound any less absurd. No one said it wasn’t about money, only that the very idea that Fox is changing Johnny Storm’s race just to disassociate this movie from the past 2 clunkers is asinine. It’s a PC move, which even Jordan admits in this interview.

  • James Bishop

    Your post is a mistake in gross generalization followed by an assertion that I’m a terrible person. (I don’t think I am, but whatever floats your boat). From the posts I see from you on this matter, I see you as a person who has a politically motivated social agenda. Whether this makes you a terrible person, I will not speculate. But it is quite transparent you’re not a fan of the FF.

  • James Bishop

    I’ve read your track of posts here. You’re pretty pretentious too pal.

  • James Bishop

    White didn’t equal default. Writers wrote from their point of view. The rest of your post is bogus.

  • James Bishop

    We don’t care about the money is the point. The problem is most of the posters that are playing the racist card on our comments are trying to assert that reason instead of our love for the material AS IS, unchanged. Arguing isn’t going to change us, and it certainly makes none of the opposing commentary truth.

  • James Bishop

    Amen.

  • AL

    And you saying it’s absurd doesn’t make it so. I never said it wasn’t a pc move as well but that isn’t the only or main reason. And once again if you think that reason is asinine you really have no idea how the movie industry works.

  • simon austin

    I’ve not got much of a problem with race swapping but it’s pretty moronic how, in as visual a medium as comics, people find it weird or strange that some people might have a problem with it. Like I said, comics is a visual medium, so much of your identification of a character comes from their visual representation, if you change too much of that (either in comics or film) then there is the potential that character will not resonate with you.

    Yes, discussions need to be had on minority heroes in film, TV and comics, but this isn’t about race, this is about altering the visual representation of the character. Take this –

    You have Reeve, Cain, Routh, Cavill, 4 Superman actors, they all look different, they all played Supermen that were different enough from each other, but they maintained a number of recognisable characteristics outside of the shield and cape. The most recongisable one being = the dark hair.

    Now, look at this argument going on with Michael B. Jordan… This argument would be just as fierce if it was Superman and instead of being black Superman had long ginger hair.

    So yeah, it’s not about racism, it’s about fans of Johnny Storm seeing Johnny Storm as blond haired blue eyed and feeling that a black actor would completely disconnect them.

  • James Bishop

    Maybe the movie industry needs to care about how we work?

  • The Griffinator

    Re-read how your opinions – because that’s really all they are – are phrased in such a way that yours is the only opinion that could possibly be right.

    Allow me to refresh your memory, before you start editing to cover your tracks :

    “The change has nothing to do with progression or racism or anything else like that.”

    “They want everyone to know that this is a completely different movie.”

    “If you think that reason is asinine you really have no idea how the movie industry works.”

    “You obviously have no idea how movie studios operate if think that’s absurd.”

    Notice how you speak in absolutes, and keep going back to how anyone disagreeing with you just doesn’t know how the industry works?

    People like you are why wars exist. Take it down a notch, cowboy.

  • AL

    they don’t and never will. it’s all about dollar signs. so unless you are making them money, they don’t give a shit.

  • The Griffinator

    You forgot to remind James that he just doesn’t know how the industry works, since he disagreed with you.

  • AL

    Really ? Now you’re just talking nonsense. religion and money are why wars exist numbnuts. my “absolutes” come from information gained from people that actually work in the movie industry and this very thing is something i hear discussed on a regular basis.

  • AL

    that’s so cute. are you my new groupie now ? I haven’t had one for awhile.

  • The Griffinator

    “My “absolutes” come from information gained from people that actually work in the movie industry”

    There you go, claiming your opinion is more valid than someone else’s. No matter how many times this behavior is pointed out to you, you continue to act like it’s perfectly normal for you to be this much of a narcissist.

    I didn’t mention it because I wanted to see how many times you could throw the fact that you “know” people in the industry in the faces of the people you look down on when you write anonymously on the internet — and honestly, you have not disappointed, “AL” — but I don’t just *know* people in the industry… I WORK IN IT.

    More specifically, in marketing.

    But go ahead, tell us again how we just don’t know how the industry works, you condescending egomaniac.

    Once again, people like you are why wars exist.

  • AL

    marketing ? HAHAHAHAHA !!! oh you got the inside track on it then. sure you do. it’s ok. i believe you.

  • The Griffinator

    Typical response from a typical troll. Had you pegged right from the get-go. Go on, keep writing… you’re seriously not doing your credibility any favors. ;)

  • The Griffinator

    Did you really just “type” laughter? ;) You, sir, are too much. Wishing you and your planet-sized ego a nice afternoon. l8r

  • AL

    HAHAHAHA !! Ok kid. have a nice day.

  • James Bishop

    If you don’t see a problem with this, and more important if you hear this discussed on a regular basis and you don’t sound off about it being questionable – then you are part of the problem. You were right, religion and money are reasons for war, but number three on that list is bystander apathy (People like you who just stood around to watch and said it wasn’t their problem or they could change it so why bother?) I already acknowledged far down this thread that money was the only reason for this discussion. An no where in defending that point of view did anyone opposed have the guts to say that was the problem or that it was the wrong. They simply felt it easier to call me a racist and somehow say that I should just roll with the times. It takes great courage to declare me an absurd minded racist while defending the interests of studio’s making money by pitting your wallet against your guilt to change established art of these literary classics.

  • The Griffinator

    Right back at you, son. ;)

  • AL

    who cares about credibility. this is a random article chat session. If i was worried about what people thought would i have my picture up and be linked to my facebook ? that’s cute though.

  • James Bishop

    Ah, internet courage. I get it. Why don’t you speak up to all those industry insiders you hear conversing and tell them they’re worthless hacks? Why don’t you tell them about conversations like this one where you defend their money grab as unstoppable while they mortgage other people’s creations? You totally have the nuts to stump here, but not at the table with the big boy urinals you claim to have access to? Please. Go away.

  • AL

    HAHAHAHA !!! so cute. I don’t have access to “the big boy urinals” as you put it, i have access to a production assistant and a casting assistant both of witch have very little power but do hear a lot about what goes on.

  • The Griffinator

    Right, and you’re the only person in the world with access to these people. It’s not like someone who actually works in, say, marketing for several movie studios could possibly have access to similarly – or even more – important people.

    And you actually taking the type to “type” your laughter really makes you come across as petty and childish, in addition to a raging condescending egomaniac.

    You could spend all day doing this, couldn’t you? Yeah.. had you pegged right from the start. :) I’ll let James take over from here, he’s got more patience for your special kind of a-hole than I do.

    PS: HAHAHAHAHAHAH!!!!!”!”!! <- This is you. :)

  • AL

    So cute. yes i’m sure the marketing department gets alot more of the info than the people that actually work on the movie. and yes, i type out my laughter because i’m not a teenager that uses text speak all the time. :)

  • AL

    and yes, i could do this all day.

  • Harlock999

    Indeed, John Stewart was the 2nd active Earth-born GL for Sector 2814. (Guy Gardner never really had a role until he went cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs in Englehart’s run, which was already featuring Stewart as THE GL at that point.)

  • Comicfan

    In my opinion since the movies take place in a different universe than the comic books anything goes.

  • AL

    Huh ? Guy was Hal’s official backup, and Stewart was Guys backup. Stewart was third.

  • Harlock999

    Marvel Studios has done a pretty good job at keeping things as close to the “actual” Marvel Universe as possible, with an obvious understanding that the films cannot be exactly the same as the source material.

    But if Fox is going to continue with their X-Men franchise the way it’s already been laid out? With the original team consisting of Cyclops’ younger brother, Banshee, (the African-American) Angel, etc? And the current team losing a depowered Rogue? And a deceased Cyclops? And a disappearing Nightcrawler? And we’re just supposed to go along with all of the other screwy decision they’ve made (e.g., X-Men Origins: Wolverine’s bizarre cast of characters)?

    Well, it doesn’t surprise me that they’ll insert diversity into the all-white family of the Fantastic Four.

    Now, I’m not saying I’m a fan – one way or the other – but I am saying that I am not surprised.

    I would, however, have been surprised to find Falcon turned into an Asian-American or Rhodey into a Hispanic or Ant-Man into an African-American in a Marvel Studios feature. While it’s easy to accept diversity into such background characters as Hogun and Heimdall? And having The Ultimates’ version of Nick Fury show up in a film seemingly more suited to that series’ sensibilities rather than the Avengers proper?

    Well, I don’t think Marvel Studios would so flagrantly change the source material to the point of making decades’ worth of comics appear so radically different from the “Marvel Cinematic Universe.”

  • Harlock999

    I just love people who don’t know how to read…

    AGAIN, Guy had NO role (having been injured and falling into a coma) until AFTER Stewart had taken up the 2nd active role as Sector 2814’s GL.

  • James Bishop

    “hahaha… so cute!” – Is that all you got? You obviously didn’t understand what was said and, since you’re either rolling from your cell and your swipe misspelled “which” for you – or – you really aren’t smart enough to spell it on your own, I’ll save you the train wreck of thought that keeps occurring while you try to rebut arguments you have no wit to engage. Have a nice day.

  • James Bishop

    That you think your typed laughter is relevant is funny (like me pity laughing at you with sarcasm funny) in and of itself.

  • Savonti

    I would have been furious with that, If the Green Lantern in the movie were called John Stuart.

    Personally, I love where he said… “there weren’t a lot of comic book characters who were geared towards us” …in a piece about people being narrow minded. Who is “us” actually, Americans? Surely he can’t mean so called “African Americans”, you know, if it’s 2014 and race shouldn’t matter anymore.

  • Savonti

    I disagree, Michael B. Jordan is a hell of an actor, the key there being actor, in terms of him being “too American”.

    In terms of youth, sure he’s young but that doesn’t mean he can’t be a king. I would have loved to see him play Black Panther.

  • Savonti

    I agree with you there. It feels like the Nick Fury so many of us grew up with just isn’t good enough anymore.

    I think at the end of the day though, I think that there’s plenty of room for more characters of color, just make new characters or make more use of the ones that already exist.

    Case in point it wasn’t so long ago that Luke Cage was a D list character at best. He was used properly and is not only a great character but one of my favorite characters.

  • Another Smart Man

    The argument isn’t invalid, admittedly, it probably could have been worded better.

    Why is it wrong to want to see a live action version of a beloved character? Casting anyone but a young white guy in this case, takes away from that. It’s a “new spin” sure, and that works both ways.

    If I had grown up white, I’m sure I wouldn’t have had to deal with racism, maybe I a couple of the times I got pulled over I wouldn’t have gotten a ticket, or maybe wouldn’t have gotten pulled over at all. What I’m saying here is that being black, while not something that defines me, did change how I grew up, how I see the world and who I am. If I were white I wouldn’t be the same person and therefore a character like Johnny Storm as a fellow black man isn’t the same character.

    Luke Cage, for example, was a man from Harlem who was wrongly imprisoned, anyone can live in Harlem and anyone can be wrongfully Imprisoned so his race shouldn’t matter either. That said, if say Changing Tatum were cast as Luke Cage the reaction would largely be identical. The difference would be there would be plenty of people who would enjoy pointing out how the tables have turned though I wouldn’t be one of them.

    Personally, I just want to see the characters (and plots) on the screen to be as faithful and respectful to the ones on the page as possible.

  • Jimmy Russell

    Only bigoted racists have a problem with this, there needs to be more white superheros cast as african americans to better reflect a modern diverse society.

  • Thedude3445

    I didn’t watch it until afterwards, but an earlier episode of Superman had Kyle Rayner becoming the Green Lantern in an episode. I guess they used John since, again, Kyle’d be too close to Flash in personality. (The “diveristy” thing was already covered by Hawkgirl.)

  • AL

    Relevant ? That’s just me laughing. Would it make you feel better if i used LOL ? And i’m not sure if you’re new to the internet but the distinctive quality of sarcasm is present in the spoken word and manifested chiefly by vocal inflections so it doesn’t really work on the internet. ;)

  • AL

    I got you. i agree with the guy thing and especially the rayner thing. i would have really assumed they would have used rayner considering that he was the main GL at the time. But then that also goes back to people saying they only used John to add color to the league ( it’s not like he was popular at the time ) which is a horrible reason to include a character. I always found John pretty dull and uninteresting.

  • AL

    HAHAHA !! no, i actually think it’s cute that you’re still trying to go and i find it especially cute that the only thing you could come up with was to attack my spelling. It’s the first sign of internet desperation. ;)

  • AL

    it was ? I mean, hawkgirl was an alien but she was still pretty caucasian.

  • Po

    I could see a black human torch, but I really understand the fans who don´t, We picture some characters in a certain way. Just as an example, there were a rumor that Denzel Washington were going to play Lex Luthor in MoS2. And for me that would be weird cause to me a character like Lex Luthor is defined by being white and male. To me he is the embodiment of oppression against minorities. He is rasicm, sexicm etc, the power the white man had over the black man, power men had over women and still has. So to be played by Denzel Washington would be really weird for me. So I really understand why some people don´t want the characters to change. Cause we all picture them in our own way. And change is not a bad thing but not necessarily a good thing either.

  • Thedude3445

    Well, her voice actress is Hispanic, at least. It’s hard to tell ethnicity in a cartoon, of course, but considering all the other Hawk guys had Hispanic voice actors, it was intentional.

  • AL

    was she ? Huh, i didn’t know that. Learn something new everyday.

  • Thedude3445

    Yeah I never really noticed it as a kid because for some reason back in the early-to-mid 2000s there was this huge wave of Hispanic characters in like every single cartoon and i just didn’t really think about it until way later.

  • Ben

    Honestly people, it’s a grown (and vastly over paid) person playing make believe about a make believe character.. There are more important things to worry about in the world. Yes it’s partly PC bull hockey to appear hip, diversify! and modern. It’s also because the kid is a good actor and has a good relationship with the director.

  • AL

    huh, trip out on that.

  • Razorsfury

    Um then you must not have watched the cartoon because Jon Stewart’s personality in the was about as exciting as a dry sponge.

  • Ben

    Group think much?

  • Ben

    Agreed. I don’t get why it would be ok to change an iconic hero like Human Torches skin color, but imagine if it was done to black Panther, War Machine, Storm…it would cause untold nerd rage…

  • Ben

    The first movie was bad at all… Not great, but not terrible. Michael Chiklis was The Thing. He saved those movies. Jessica Alba was nice eye candy, but I don’t think she was the right fit for the role. When I think of Sue Storm, I dint think of sexy model, I think of an average woman (a mom) with powers. But hey, sex sells.. It just does to have the depth…

  • Jason

    I think your argument is invalid, you obviously troll the internet looking for touchy subjects as this so you can argue with anyone who disagrees with you and ” put them in their place”. Telling somebody that they are the reason something needs to take place doesn’t help your argument it just makes you look like an intolerant bigot. What you dislike all the whiteness in comics so you are ultra supportive of efforts to change the racial makeup of an established character just so you can feel some form of minority justice, or is it to help with your own white guilt? You do realize everybody on here is just expressing their opinion on the subject at hand, and that they can disagree with this casting choice without being a racist or intolerent. Also there are right ways and wrong ways to address this issue in comics, remember when the Punisher turned black for a couple of issues back in the 90’s? Yeah that was some ill conceived bs to appeal to minority demographics. Remember nick fury in the ultimates or the current Mr. Terrific? Those were two examples of expanding the roles of minority characters without wiping out their previous history of being white. You don’t just say screw you to the fans that have followed these characters for decades in favor of appeasing the PC crowd, and that sir is what it seems like you are in favor of.

  • Thedude3445

    Well I was like 8 when the cartoon first came on. I recall having some pretty fond memories of all of the original team; John might have been my favorite besides Flash and maybe Batman. I like to think I had better perception than most kids my age, but obviously nostalgia has probably tinted my memories on it.

  • Leandro Arteaga Vega

    And that’s is really a strech

  • Shin Tshung Wong

    So it’s ‘super racist’ to change the Black Panther’s backstory but not Johnny’s…….
    On another note, does Marvel have any Southeast Asian characters?

  • Jason

    I can agree with expanding the comic industry to reflect current demographics. The readers of comics have changed a lot since I was a child where it was mainly white males who were the readers, and really marvel and dc just created characters that reflected the demographics of the readers. That is changing now as I see more minority and females entering comic stores than I did 20 or even 10 years ago. So by all means comic industry create more ethnic superheros if you have the readers that want to see it, just please be respectful to the history of characters that came before.

  • Jason

    Only a bigoted racist would make a comment like you just did. Perhaps it would be better to created more black superheros than to change the color of an existing hero. I bet you haven’t even though of this argument yet so I will go ahead and point out for you that changing the race of a current character just gives you reheated leftovers with a new skin tone, wouldn’t you prefer an original character as opposed to that?

  • Jason

    You have the most honest and logical statement of any I have read so far, thank you for putting it in words where others could not. As for compelling black characters, well it’s been a slow process but the industry is starting to come around and diversify but there is a need to get more minority creators involved in the process. I remember a time where white guys writing comics created a black superhero and you would hear one group of readers argue the character was to white, and another group would say the character is stereotypical. It would be nice to see more minority characters created that fit neither of these two molds, but are just normal people with superpowers who just so happen to be black, or asian, or Arabic.

  • Tommy Rankin

    Not even going to bother explaining again why what you’re saying is not correct, I think Jason said it clearly enough

  • Tommy Rankin

    Not to mention all the racism rage.

  • Tommy Rankin

    Exactly this!

  • Thedude3445

    It’s not the race that matters, it’s the implications of a white man being king of a country of black people (Wakanda).
    I have no idea about Southeast Asian characters. But they could still go to the area without having heroes from there. They have that city Madripoor though I’d rather see a real part of the world than the fake island. Singapore wouldn’t be as cool either as say Thailand or Cambodia, or Borneo or Java.

  • cryhwks

    You can have your opinion but I think your wrong the fact that he was White goes into that mindset back when this character was created that there was no one more evil than the cooperate White guy. Which is why a character like Lex Luthor went from a mad scientist guy to a cooperate guy.

    Same thing with all those guys in the X-Men who where either in charge of the Sentinel’s program or where in charge of some Mutant Registration Act. They where all cooperate White guy’s you never saw another race in that role.

    Weather that’s right or wrong I don’t know? But that goes into the heart of what those characters where.

  • Daniel Jesse Spade

    This guy is right. If there should be more black super heroes, then make more black super heroes. This will have the double benefit of there being more black characters represented in the comics, and the old characters will still be around and stay the same. If Jonny Storm is going to be black in the new Fantastic four movie, then change the names of all the characters, call them the “Dynamite Quartet” or something, and let Marvel make a fuckin’ fantastic four movie.

  • Daniel Jesse Spade

    ^ This guy. He knows what he is talking about.

  • Daniel Jesse Spade

    That’s what I was saying. Make them all black characters… just don’t call it “Fantastic Four”. It can be a differently named team in a story loosely based on the FF.

  • Daniel Jesse Spade

    “The Dy-No-Mite Quartet”…a film very very very loosely based in the World’s Greatest Comics Magazine.

  • Daniel Jesse Spade

    Idris would make a fantastic James Bond. However, in the second half of your paragraph, you tar us all with one brush, and you become what you claim to hate.

  • Daniel Jesse Spade

    YES! Thank you sir.

  • Daniel Jesse Spade

    Should have had someone read it to you then son. It said way more than that. How dare you use Mr. Cosby’s image to troll the internet and engage in your own brand of racism. Bill Cosby is a fine man who wants nothing more than for everyone to stop hating each other. You are a racist.

  • Daniel Jesse Spade

    That is not what he wrote.

  • James Bishop

    Chilkis did nail the Thing IMO. And I too didn’t think the movies were awful. Not as blockbuster as the Avengers, but not awful.

  • tenshi yuki

    Far from out of date, of the statistics point to specifically what I’ve been saying, that the only minority solos that are selling in the big 2 are legacy characters, as such the whole create new characters idea is pointless because no one buys the books when they create new characters. The create new characters thing is just another way to have characters written in books and movies that many themselves do not have to see. And that’s the primary problem we have here. Unlike diggle whose a side character supporting a white main character in which many comic book readers doesn’t mind (and of course arrow is a television show and such draws from a much larger demographic than the miniscule comic book community that’s less than 300,000) changing johnny storm to black forces a black main character in front of their face, and that of course is a problem.

  • unbrokenrabbit

    That feels like an oversimplification of the point smart internet man was making. I don’t believe he was claiming that “being white isn’t a part of a person’s character”, but rather that being white is an insignificant aspect of Johnny Storm’s character. It wouldn’t detract from the character of Johnny Storm (or for that matter Reed, Sue or Ben) in a meaningful way if his race were to be changed, as long as the focus of the character didn’t then shift to racially-motivated stories. Color him however you want, then just tell fun stories about a cocky dude who lights himself on fire and flies around fighting crime.

  • unbrokenrabbit

    Sounds fun. He’s a good actor, so hopefully this will lead to a fun movie.