What The Hell Is Going On With Josh Trank’s Reboot Of ‘Fantastic Four’?

Given the history of the film franchise, from the awful Roger Corman version to the more recent critically-panned efforts, people aren’t exactly thrilled by the idea of a fresh Fantastic Four reboot. Set to hit theaters on August 7, the new attempt is directed by Chronicle’s Josh Trank and stars Kate Mara, Michael B. Jordan, Jaime Bell and duck-facing Miles Teller as the titular quartet, but we still don’t have a clue what these actors look like in character. What the hell does The Thing look like? Is his dork made of rock, too? People want to know, Trank!

While a trailer might not be coming until at least next month (rumored to be attached to Kingsman: The Secret Service), what with the MPAA’s whole 6-month rule, we do have word from X-Men: First Class director Matthew Vaughn that fans of Trank’s previous work are in for a treat.

“I’ve seen the movie, it’s good,” Vaughn told us.

“I thought Chronicle was a fantastic movie and [Josh] Trank has gone off and done his version of Fantastic Four. If you like Chronicle, then you’ll like this.”

“We’re all backing Josh Trank’s vision,” he concludes. “And hopefully the world will like Josh Trank’s vision”. (Via Flickering Myth)

That seems like a good review, right? So with that and Teller previously saying that he loved the script, we can just pack up shop and move along, wait for Fantastic Four to hit theaters, and then listen to Teller complain about how it made him feel dead inside way down the road. Or… we could address the lingering rumors that Trank trashed the set and/or his living quarters for the film so badly that Fox Filmed Entertainment’s CEO had to fly in and personally apologize to the property owner, which JoBlo breathed some life into today. The “story” they linked to is actually the LSU message board Tiger Droppings and a thread that gets interesting with some posts on Nov. 26 from user “stegs_81”:

After the crap Trank pulled in Baton Rouge, i doubt he ever directs a studio picture again. He will certainly never work for Fox. At this point that F4 reboot might never get released.

A buddy of mine was on the crew. Trank showed up to set late or so high he couldn’t speak almost everyday. Some days he didn’t show up at all. He treated crew terribly. He trashed the house the production company rented for him. From what I’m told he did a couple hundred grand worth of damage.

True or not, a couple hundred grand worth of damage is both astounding and impressive. Sure, it’s also assholish, but you have to really work hard to achieve that. The next day, “GreatLakesTiger24” wrote, “can confirm what is bolded” in regard to Trank showing up late and high, but also “not sure about the rest but could find out.” Stegs_81 came back three days later and added:

Trank did so much damage to the house that [Fox Filmed Entertainment Chairman and CEO] Jim Gianopulos came to Baton Rouge and personally apologized to the owners. Trust me, Trank’s career is done. There will be no major study sequels or spin offs for him. He’ll be lucky to get the sequel to a Stabbing at Leia’s 21st Birthday.

And someone who goes by “Ron Burgundy” chimed in with:

heard this as well from a person in the know.

ETA: Also heard he was fired after wrapping and other are working on it post production.

That was the end of this edition of Tiger Droppings’ HOT GOSS. Trank didn’t have to be fired to be out of the sequel, because he was already hired by Disney to work on a standalone Star Wars film. Everything else? Rumors from people with keyboards. Eventually a writer from Latino Review, which is sometimes way ahead of the pack and other times throwing darts while blindfolded, gave the story some legitimacy just in time for Christmas.

Since then the story has also been picked up by sites like Daily Super Heroes and Nerd Reactor, and just like what I’ve done here, it’s all a recap of these message board posts that could be complete and utter bullsh*t. So here’s the thing about that – why hasn’t Trank said anything about it all? Even a passing joke about it might get people changing their minds about this reboot. Why hasn’t Fox been pumping some steam into this title to get people excited about it during a period when we’re all geeking out about Avengers: Age of Ultron?

It’s all so strange, almost like a lesson in how not to market a film. Even a purported studio employee wrote in a since-deleted Reddit thread that he didn’t appreciate the lack of marketing for this reboot, so he spilled the beans on a bunch of plot details and leaked the film’s logo. You’ve got the story that Marvel intentionally killed the Fantastic Four comic book to screw over Fox (even though Marvel’s Tom Brevoort shot that down), and there was the Punisher debacle that made it look like the cast of Fantastic Four was killed as a cruel, immature joke, even though the writer vehemently denied it. And there’s also a random theory that Disney gave Trank the Star Wars gig specifically so he couldn’t do a Fantastic Four sequel.

So many questions about a movie that opens a little less than seven months from now, and no real answers. But at least Matthew Vaughn thinks it’s good.