There’s no sense in dancing around it: Josh Trank’s 2015 take on Fantastic Four was bad. Whether Trank himself deserves the lion’s share of the blame for it is anyone’s guess, but the suck remains. Our own Jim Vorel closed his review of the film by lamenting, “I don’t know what else to say. Fantastic Four isn’t good on any level.” So we were semi-surprised to learn that, even after that widely lambasted box-office bomb, a sequel is still on the table at Fox. “We want to make another Fantastic Four movie,” said producer and co-writer Simon Kinberg, stating what would have been the obvious if the first film had been even halfway decent.
Kinberg revealed the follow-up’s potential existence in a discussion with Den of Geek during the junket for X-Men: Apocalypse. “We didn’t make a good movie,” Kinberg said of the first film, “and the world voted, and I think they probably voted correctly. And you can’t make a good movie every time out—not everybody does. We actually have a pretty good batting average, all things considered. But I think we made many mistakes when we made that movie—mistakes that we learned from and we wouldn’t repeat.”
It appears that Fox shares Kinberg’s confidence, as well as his desire for Fantastic Four 2, which would feature the same talented cast that was utterly wasted in Trank’s reboot. “We love that cast,” said Kinberg. “I mean if I were to say to you now Michael B. Jordan and Miles Teller, and Kate [Mara] and Jamie [Bell] are great actors—we love that cast. I love the comic, I mean I love it almost as much as X-Men.”
Kinberg emphasized that the prospective sequel would more accurately reflect the tone of the comics, which would be a massive upgrade over the first film, which “[didn’t] even seem to be aware that it [was] based on an iconic Marvel property,” per our review. “We’ll try to be truer to the essence of the tone of Fantastic Four … which is a brighter, funner, more optimistic tone,” said Kinberg. “I think we tried to make a darker Fantastic Four movie, which seemed like a radical idea but we were kind of messing with the DNA of the actual comic instead of trusting the DNA of the comic.”
It remains unclear whether Fantastic Four 2 is simply possible or actually probable, but if Kinberg’s enthusiasm is to be taken at face value, the sequel seems like a safe bet. “We’re working really hard on figuring [it] out,” he said. “Nothing would make me happier than the world embracing a Fantastic Four movie.” We would agree, as long as Kinberg and company can deliver audiences a film about Marvel’s First Family that is worth embracing.
Fantastic Four 2, originally slated for the summer of 2017, is obviously without a production timeline for now, let alone a release date. We’ll have more details for you as they surface.