If you’ve been reading Den of Geek over the last year or two, you’ll know that we kept a pretty open mind about Josh Trank’s Fantastic Four reboot. Chronicle was an impressive movie, and the young cast of Fantastic Four was excellent.
Unfortunately, the final film turned out to not be entirely worthy of our optimism.
But there had been hints of problems throughout the production. The repeated delays of the movie itself, the lack of any kind of presence at the 2014 San Diego Comic-Con, and the last minute re-shoots. And then there were the rumors of behind the scenes drama. For the most part, everyone involved has kept quiet, but director Josh Trank tweeted something (and then promptly deleted it) that seems pretty telling.
“A year ago I had a fantastic version of this,” Mr. Trank tweeted. “And it would’ve received great reviews. You’ll probably never see it. That’s reality though.”
When you watch Fantastic Four, it does really feel like you can see the difference between the movie Josh Trank wanted to make, and then whatever it is was cobbled together during the movie’s final third or so. While that first hour certainly doesn’t feel like anything traditionally associated with the Fantastic Four, its more sci-fi trappings and brief flirtation with body horror are at least more ambitious than your standard superhero origin story fare, even if it doesn’t all quite work.
And then it all goes to hell. It feels like somebody panicked, wondering where the superhero movie was, and tried to make an entirely different film for the last thirty minutes or so. Mr. Trank’s tweet certainly hints at that kind of studio interference. It’s a shame, because while many (myself included) might prefer a more traditional FF, the attempt to break from the increasingly similar superhero movie formula would have been welcome had it worked properly.
And here’s the screengrab so you know we aren’t making all this up.