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‘Fantastic Four’ Reboot Will Aim For Tone of Sam Raimi’s ‘Spider-Man’

Marvel’s First Family gets another shot at big-screen success next summer with director Josh Trank’s Fantastic Four reboot. Like it or not, the film is coming together, with a cast that includes Miles Teller as Reed Richards, Kate Mara as Susan Storm, Michael B. Jordan as Johnny Storm and Jamie Bell as Ben Grimm.

It’s a young cast, and a young director — and to hear writer Simon Kinberg tell it, it’s going to be a young story, with the idea to focus on the formation of the Fantastic Four.

“We’re treating this as the origin of the Fantastic Four,” he told Crave Online, “so in future movies you’d have them on sort of splashier adventures to some extent but in this one we tried to ground the science as much as possible and make it feel like it could take place in our world before it cantilevers into other worlds.”

Kinberg’s comments go beyond the scope of Fantastic Four, as he also touched on the tone of the film. According to the writer, the new Fantastic Four movie will “be somewhere on the spectrum between [Sam Raimi’s] Spider-Man and Chronicle.”

“Josh Trank’s instincts are to be as realistic and grounded and real with this stuff as possible. In many ways I would say it’s definitely more of a drama than comedy,” he said. “It’s still in the direction of Spider-Man. It’s not like Dark Knight. And even Chronicle has a lot of fun in it.”

Fantastic Four hits theaters on June 19, 2015.


  • JokersNuts

    Grounded and real… Just like the Fantastic Four has always been! Right?…

  • Guest

    Never has a franchise cried out so desperately to be put under the Disney roof.

  • LawlyerFey

    Nobody cares about this, just give the rights back to Marvel

  • lewis4510

    If it’s “grounded and real” it isn’t the Fantastic Four. It’s Chronicle 2 with a FF label slapped on it.

  • Fury

    Doesn’t sound like it’s going to be ‘fantastic’, more like ‘Craptastic’, amirite?

  • John

    I really want to like this but the more I hear the more I just don’t think I will.

  • Dwright

    Raimi’s Spider-Man was a love letter to Stan and Steve. The only real change was organic web shooters, which didn’t really distract from any part of the real feeling of Spider-Man and they even used some of the comics as storyboards. If only Trank meant this, instead of trying to assuage fans, maybe his casting and approach should focus on what really makes the four Fantastic.

  • the Dagman

    Fox really needs their own Kevin Fiege clone to run their Marvel properties. Someone who can see the tone and spirit of the source material with the ability to guide the directors and producers to that vision. Right now, it appears that Fox “gets” the FF even less than they do the X-Men.

  • Lic Guido-Visión Rosas Duarte

    I’m open-minded about this movie, mostly because I did enjoy Chronicle and I’m willing to give JoshTrank the benefit of doubt. That being said, I think one of Raimi’s Spider-Man main charms is the way it embraces its comic book-iness in a way most movies with superpowered characters going for realism (Chronicle included) do not. So I can’t see why Kinberg would choose Spider-Man to talk about a ‘grounded’ approach, or how he feels that movie and Chronicle are in the same tonal wavelength at all!

  • effron

    Wow. All the damage control talk in the world isn’t going to change the reality of this impending piece of crap. Has ANY press release for this project engendered any kind of confidence in the outcome? I haven’t seen it. Don’t do it Fox, find it in your heart and wallet to let the rights lapse.

  • steve o

    Disney has used the same “grounded and real” terminology for every single non-sequel movie up until GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY. And I bet before long someone will be around to remind us that the characters in GotG, at least, are “grounded and real.” It is a catch-all term for “this isn’t like the boring sci-fi you hate!”

  • superheroes aren’t normal

    So it’s gonna be more like Spider-Man? Does that mean the Fantastic Four are all bit by radioactive spiders to get their powers? Does that mean Uncle Ben Grimm will be shot by a burglar and then resurrected as the Thing? Will the Human Torch shoot flames only out of his wrist flame shooters? And will the Invisible Girl (Woman?) be dropped off of a bridge by the Green Doctor Doom? Please rename this movie “The Fantastic Failure” just for truth in advertising!!

  • Thors Man

    Sorry, but I’m firmly rooted in the “craptastic” crowd on this one. I really want a Fantastic Four movie I can love but, I’m just not seeing it here. Even as much as I like the individual actors chose, I just don’t see them in these roles and making it true to the Source Material.

  • beta ray william

    The tone they need isn’t from an old Spidey movie. That’s old and tired. They need to capture the sense of wonder, urgency, exploration, and imagination and most importantly — a sense that humankind and society as we know it is just a small part of a larger reality — here on Earth and in the cosmos. If the FF movies can’t do that, why bother?

  • lewis4510

    No they haven’t. At no point did Disney ever use the term “grounded and real.”

    You’re probably one of the people who’ll blame racist fan boys inability to accept a black Human Torch, if the movie fails.

  • uatu13

    This movie will be a colossal turd!

  • Radam

    The difference between Sam Raimi’s adaptation and this movie was that Sam Raimi respected the source material.

  • steve o

    On IRON MAN 2: “‘That’s the big balance to strike,’ continued Downey. ‘It would be so easy to go so far out it would be intergalactic and nothing would be grounded in reality any more.”‘

    On IRON MAN 3: “’It’s clearly not the THE AVENGERS — it’s not things coming out of the sky. There’s a lot of real-world stuff that’s happening,’ says Don Cheadle, who plays IM’s fellow armored hero, Iron Patriot.

    “’And I think it gives the film more of a grounded feel.'” ~

    On THOR: THE DARK WORLD: “‘Yeah, I love the way he adds an incredibly organic element to the fantastical world of Thrones, and I think that’s what Thor could benefit from,’ [Chris] Hemsworth said. ‘It’s grounded in reality, no matter how mythical or science-fiction-like it becomes there’s a truth to it all.'” ~

    “Grounded” is a HUGE buzzword for modern Super-Hero movies. “Realistic” is another one. They are everywhere, used to describe not only nearly every Super-Hero movie but every genre movie.

  • Esteves

    They should just wait until “Incredibles 2″ comes out and then take this movie in that direction.

  • Chris Childs

    Oh good, pick a franchise that is almost 20 years old, and needed to be rebooted 2 years ago.

  • Hugh Jass

    One of the best parts of Rami’s Spiderman was J.K Simmons’ portrayal of J. Jonah Jameson. So classic.

  • Dalinkwent

    The problem with going for grounded realism, is it makes some of the more fantastical aspects stand out that much more. Despite my love of the Nolan Batman films, sometimes Batman stands out like a sore thumb. No matter how serious and realistic Nolan went for, its still a guy in a bat costume. They should be going for a more adventure/comedy tone, not drama and realism. I guess we’ll have to wait and see.

  • shannonpotratz

    Oh, this sounds original. By all means, let’s go for “grounded realism” in a movie called FANTASTIC Four. Why even bother making this movie?

  • AstroNerdBoy

    In addition to wanting a really GOOD story and actors that make me believe they are from the comic books (which at the moment, I’m really hesitant on), I’d love for this movie to acknowledge the greater Marvel universe out there (Avengers, Spider-man, X-Men). It doesn’t even have to be more than some throwaway lines here and there.

  • Madrigal Man

    I am so tired of FOX ruining good Marvel franchises. I don’t see any reason to pay them to sit through this one.

  • Melwing

    I love these movies, but- I must say… Owned

  • lewis4510

    They could always call it the Somewhat Fantastic Four. Or Sort of Fantastic Four.

  • Mikari✘

    Well, technically, those are the opinions of the actors… but I see what you meant and I agree.

    People are yelling at the Fantastic Four reboot when they know almost nothing about the movie officially. Of course, it would be nice if Marvel had the rights to FF, but let’s wait and see what at least it looks like before judging.

    Like the old saying, “never judge a book by its cover”.

  • steve o

    I mean, I love them, too. Nothing gets me more excited than a new Marvel Studios movie coming out.

    I love CHRONICLE, too, and I dig Josh Trank, so I think this new FANTASTIC FOUR movie has a shot at being pretty good.

  • steve o

    I’m not entirely sure that FF is actually worse off as FOX’s second priority than they would be as Marvel Studios’ tenth priority. If I ever figure out to get to the Red Universe, I’ll compare Marvel Studios’ upcoming DAREDEVIL show to the never-was-in-this-world David James Kelly DAREDEVIL movie.

    (My personal opinion is that the last two X-MEN movies, meaning FIRST CLASS and THE WOLVERINE, have been pretty good, and that THE WOLVERINE in particular stands up well against Marvel Studios’ own solo films. So that – along with my liking Trank, my excitement about X-MEN: DAYS, and my thinking that the Kelly DAREDEVIL was on the right track – positively colors my opinion of the current FOX regime’s handling of Marvel movies.)

  • Hypestyles

    hopefully the movie will be very faithful to the spirit of the original comics and have lots of adventure and character warmth.

  • Mike

    Maybe if fans skip it and they loose money, they will give it back to Marvel. Hey, maybe we could start a movement to do this with Spider-Man and X-Men too!

  • Jose Andres Morales Oliva

    As much as I liked them when they came to be (Spider-man 1 & 2), I would prefer the FF to not cry half the movie…

  • kevb62

    “FANTASTIC” Four? Sounding more and more like “MEDIOCRE” Four.

  • AL

    Chronicle 2

  • Victor Acosta

    ““Josh Trank’s instincts are to be as realistic and grounded and real with this stuff as possible.”

  • Victor Acosta

    They are called the Fantastic Four, not the Real Four! This all sounds so horrifying.

  • Gary

    Adventure/comedy is how they wind up with the failed comic movies of the past. They have to be somewhat grounded in order for the audience to accept the impossible.

    If Fantastic Four 4 fails it will be because Mr. Fantastic is a taffy-like character that is more ridiculous than interesting. Johnny Storm being black will only suck if they alter the story of Sue and Johnny being siblings. Another sign that a comic movie is doomed is that they tend to verge too far from source. Like any movie that brings any novel to the big screen, the producers and directors better respect the source.

  • Gary

    If Fantastic Four 4 fails it will be because Mr. Fantastic is a taffy-like character that is more ridiculous than interesting. Johnny Storm being black will only suck if they alter the story of Sue and Johnny being siblings.

  • Gary

    “Grounded and real” is how they pulled off Iron Man. Every movie in the Cinematic Universe ever since has tried to emulate this path and this is why they have worked out. Not sure they can do this with the Fantastic Four though because of Mr. Fantastic. It’s like trying to bring Speedball to the big screen. These are characters that are so cartoony that they just can’t come alive. Witness the Smurfs or the Chipmunks.

  • JokersNuts

    The difference is that the entire tone of the Fantastic Four comics have ALWAYS been about dealing with the cosmic and with the weird and fantastic. You can “ground” Iron Man or Batman without losing what has made them appealing characters for decades, but the FF is a different beast. As to your point that something “cartoony” doesn’t play in a live action movie… let’s see how Gaurdians of the Galaxy is first, but I don’t think it’s too much a stretch (pun intended) to make the FF’s powers look great on screen.

  • Eric Holmes

    Hmmm, from all the buzz, Fox might be better off dusting off Roger Corman’s iteration of the Fantastic Four.

  • Gary

    Maybe, but Mr. Fantastic looked ridiculous in the last two films. I don’t know if there is a way to make his abilities not ridiculous. It makes me think of what they did with Green Lantern’s abilities on screen. They brought his campy creations from the 70s-ish comic books and presented them on screen.

    Also, the Thing and Johnny Storm are “A” characters with fun powers. But Mr. Fantastic and Sue Storm are “B” characters. I never thought they worked well in the comics either.

    Another note or question, since Johnny Storm is black now, will he be brother to Sue?

  • JokersNuts

    Yes, step brother or adopted brother. It makes no difference.

  • Gary

    Step brother or adopted brother would work I guess. But it does make a difference about their sibling connection. The dynamic of the group would be changed, thus altering the group’s story.

  • JokersNuts

    That’s absolutely ridiculous

  • Gary

    Why? Maybe a love affair between Johnny Storm (or Smith) and Sue Storm would be lovely while Reed Richards turns to his boyfriend fling from college in legalized marriage? Perhaps the Thing can be the color yellow. The Fantastic Four lives!

    Altering such fundamental details of the characters does open the door for wider interpretations that spoil the story lines. Nobody wants to see a Superman that was raised in Moscow instead of Kansas. Nobody wants to see a spoiled Bruce Wayne who’s parents are alive and well. And nobody wants to see Bilbo Baggins as an Elf. To this day these film critics bring up the “forgivable” natural webslingers in Sam Raimi’s Spiderman. Just that fundamental change altered Peter Parker’s identity as a mechanical genius. (Don’t get me wrong, I liked the movie alot).

    The source material provides fundamental identities to these characters. For a director to offer his “interpretation” in such a way that it pushes aside the fundamentals is tragic. Johnny Storm and Sue Storm need to be siblings (adopted or by birth) in order for the fundamental dynamic to be present.

  • Magnetic Eye

    “Josh Trank’s instincts are to be as realistic and grounded and real
    with this stuff as possible.”

    His instincts ought to be as realistic and grounded and real with this stuff as you genuinely can be by being faithful to the original source material. 

    A Fantastic Four film can certainly be grounded in some degree of realism because essentially it screams ‘sci-fi epic’ and you can ground that in science and the realism of everyday family dynamics.

    A Fantastic Four film will also have high quality drama, action and realistic VFX/CGI. It should have an (A) list Director of Ridley Scott’s caliber, not someone just starting out.

    I have no time for counterfeit Marvel adaptations. I’ve been boycotting Fox Abattoirs Crappy Marvel adaptations for several years now. Let’s hope Stan Lee has the courage to not appear in a cameo for this one.

    He should have a press conference standing up for the best, original and still popular Fantastic Four that he and Jack “King” Kirby created.

    Nobody wants a hipster “Chronicle 2″ with Marvel characters running around.
 Nobody wants a convoluted alternate re-imagining.

    Do everybody a favor Fox and hand the film rights back to the rightful owners and originators. Let MARVEL STUDIOS do what they do best with their own characters.