All eyes may be trained on Marvel’s other cinematic properties as we inch ever closer to the summer blockbuster season, but following the debut of the film’s enigmatic first trailer earlier this morning, there’s now a considerable amount of curiosity orbiting around Josh Trank’s Fantastic Four retelling.
Placing a heavier emphasis on the science behind the superpowered quartet, the reboot will hone inspiration from the Ultimate Fantastic Four comic book thread, swapping out doomed astronauts entering near-Earth orbit for space travel beyond our humble solar system. Such an approach has undoubtedly broadened the proverbial canvas for Simon Kinberg and Trank — writer and director of Fox’s summer tentpole, respectively — and it’s one that will see Marvel’s First Family go to another dimension.
“We want some of that to be a surprise,” says Kinberg. “It is in many ways an origin story, but it’s also about how they react to this transformation, and the ways the world does or doesn’t react to them, which is different, I would say, than all other superhero films. Well, I can say this – our characters go to another dimension. It was something we discussed from our earliest conversations.”
So, it appears that DNA-altering cosmic rays have been placed back on the shelf for this new iteration, but as the first-look trailer attests, that isn’t the only element that the creative pair have reworked. In hindsight, the Fantastic Four of 2005 was many things — heartless, goofy and lacking any tangible threat — but it looks to be that Kinberg and Trank are pushing the IP in a whole new and, crucially, realistic direction replete with sound science theory and genuinely relatable characters.
“We live in a time where there’s a required instant gratification from audiences,” says Trank, talking exclusively to Empire. “That’s a fun challenge in terms of putting together this teaser, picking and choosing how much you’re actually giving away. You can’t have the word ‘fantasy’ or ‘fantastical’ without a contrast.
“It has to stem from a grounded experience. You can’t have bad without good, you can’t have right without wrong, you can’t have fantastic without mundane. You need to experience all that to really earn the title of the film, ‘Fantastic Four’.”
It remains to be seen whether such an approach will go down well with the audience. Nevertheless, Fox has clearly placed its bet on the reboot given that the studio has already greenlit a direct sequel for 2017. We’ll just have to wait until Fantastic Four makes its bow on August 7, 2015 to judge whether or not its up to the billing.