The film did terribly at the box office, and despite the poor reviews Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice has (27% rotten on the Tomatometer, but 67% audience approval and it made $868.8 million worldwide), that film has nothing on Fantastic Four’s 9% rotten and 19% audience approval. To put it into succinct terms: Critics didn’t like it, audiences didn’t like it, I didn’t like it — no one liked it. Even director Josh Trank distanced himself from it and the script.
So it’s baffling that producer Simon Kinberg wants to produce a Fantastic Four 2 with the same cast. Here’s what he said during the X-Men: Apocalypse press tour (via Den of Geek) about a possible sequel:
“We want to make another Fantastic Four movie. We love that cast – 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.”
That’s not to say he didn’t acknowledge that the first film was a poor movie:
“We didn’t make a good movie 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.[…]
“We’ll try to be truer to the essence of the tone of Fantastic Four, which is completely – well, not completely, but largely – distinct from the X-Men, which is brighter, funner, more optimistic tone. 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.”
The craziest thing is… I kind of hope Kinberg gets his chance. Fantastic Four had a lot wrong with it, but it actually started off very promising. The beginning of the film had a very 80s Spielbergian feel to it that works so incredibly well for Fantastic Four. He’s also not wrong about the cast, who are all great actors when given something to work with that isn’t awful.
What I really hope is that 20th Century Fox just gives up and lets Marvel Studios take the franchise back, so they can integrate it into the MCU. Barring that, Fox has about six more years to produce another Fantastic Four before the rights revert back Marvel, so chances are good we’ll see another film, whether it’s a sequel or another reboot. Perhaps Marvel Studios and Fox work out a deal where Marvel produces it and Fox releases it, a la Spider-Man: Homecoming.