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Kate Mara Says 'The Fantastic Four' Movie Won’t Be Based On The Comic Book

by Edward Davis
July 15, 2014 2:20 PM
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The upcoming reboot of the “The Fantastic Four” movie has been described by the screenwriter, Simon Kinberg as “real, gritty and grounded.” The writer/producer even said the Josh Trank-directed movie was akin to “Batman Begins.” Now if you know the original “Fantastic Four” movies with Chris Evans and Jessica Alba, you know those films are nothing like “Batman Begins.” They’re much more in line with the comic—a bit goofy, broad and silly (which is why Tim Story’s movies might be terrible, but they were in the spirit of the comics).

So more and more, “The Fantastic Four” movie that 20th Century Fox is putting on for 2015 sounds like a massive reinvention. For one, Johnny Storm, aka The Human Torch, won’t be a Caucasian, he’ll be played by African-American actor Michael B. Jordan. In a feature titled “How The 'Fantastic Four' Reboot Might Be Changing Canon, And Why That's A Good Thing” we’ve already speculated that “The Fantastic Four” film could be total reinvention. And now it seems it’s all but confirmed. In an interview with “House Of Cards” star Kate Mara in Esquire Latin America (via Live For Films), the actress says the movie won’t even be based on the comics or comics story lines.

Asked if she liked comics, Mara gave a revealing answer. “I’ve never been a fan of comics, I’ve never actually read one. I was going to for this movie but the director said it wasn’t necessary. Well, actually he told us that we shouldn’t do it because the plot won’t be based on any history of anything already published. So I chose to follow his instructions. The one fact is I am a fan of comic book movies, so it’s very exciting to be part of a movie like this.”

As suggested in that feature, this is possibly for the best. While the super hero group is a Marvel flagship team, there’s nary a classic storyline out there and the team and comic themselves were a little inherently lightweight. Trank did good on “Chronicle,” the sci-fi movie that has super hero-ish elements to it, but really was about characters, humans and people and how they’d react to suddenly being given super human powers.

There just might be a very similar approach here. And hell, if they’re throwing out elements like the Fantastic Four’s a bit ridiculous Baxter Building headquarters, the Fantasticar and those inane elements, we wouldn’t argue. “The Fantastic Four” is scheduled to hit theaters on July 19, 2015 (and there's rumors the cast may hit Comic-Con, wooooooo!).

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More: Kate Mara, Fantastic Four, Simon Kinberg

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  • Drew | July 18, 2014 10:40 AMReply

    sooo this is going to be like the Miami Vice movie... the characters and their names are the same and that's about it... Yeah why not just make a different movie and NOT call it the Fantastic Four if the idea is to not make it like the comics? Nothing worse than having a premise with years of history behind it then totally ignoring that content to make your own vision IMO. If you want to make something original do it, don't basterdize something many fans adore for your own ego.

    and I'm not even a big FF fan myself, just don't like the idea of what they're suggesting.

  • Josh Flanagan | July 16, 2014 4:38 PMReply

    "While the super hero group is a Marvel flagship team, there’s nary a classic storyline out there and the team and comic themselves were a little inherently lightweight."

    …are you f-ing *high*? Do you have *any* idea what you're talking about?

    No. No, you don't.

  • Jaxman | July 16, 2014 5:31 AMReply

    Don't expect to follow comic book canon? Don't expect fans to show. Stay creatively idiotic, Hollywood.

  • brou | July 16, 2014 2:57 AMReply

    " if they’re throwing out elements like the Fantastic Four’s a bit ridiculous Baxter Building headquarters, the Fantasticar and those inane elements, we wouldn’t argue."
    Well, the Baxter Building is in the film, as recent behind the scenes pictures revealed it. It's now an institute, more in tune with the "Ultimate Fantastic Four" series.
    The anti-spam filter won't let me post links but you could find the pictures through google easily.

  • Alphabet | July 15, 2014 4:57 PMReply

    They should just call it 4OUR. No costumes, no powers. It's a gritty urban drama about saving an orphanage.

  • Emperor Zerg Rush | July 16, 2014 1:22 AM

    I know you're making a point through a joke but I wouldn't be surprised if Four/4 ends up in consideration for the title. Unfortunately it would never incorporate elements of the Marvel Knights 4 books, which saw the Fantastic Four broke and kicked out of the Baxter Building while attempting to adjust to "real life" as celebrity superheroes. I guess they'll save that goldmine for the sitcom treatment if the movie proves successful.

  • Buddy | July 15, 2014 4:01 PMReply

    'There's nary a classic storyline out there'. Umm besides being a template for all silver age comics (including the beloved Avengers) there's a little saga about Galactus and the Silver Surfer that's considered an all time classic, and John Byrne's run is also highly regarded
    You know as much about comics as Mara does.

  • dantes342 | July 15, 2014 3:04 PMReply

    Then...why even bother to call it "The Fantastic Four"? Why make it?

    The reason the Nolan Batman films were so successful is that they drew on the foundations of the character and didn't run from them. They didn't consider the characters or their lore "inane" or disposable, and guess what? Neither did the moviegoing public or critics. Of course, a slavishly faithful rendition of the comics isn't what anyone needs -- but an adaptation that preserves the charm, fun, and original intent of these characters who've endured for 50 years, yeah, that might be nice.

    And maybe the next person who writes about it can know something about the source material instead of just crapping all over it.

  • John T | July 15, 2014 5:12 PM

    Yep ... This article almost reads like something from The Onion.

  • Shawn | July 15, 2014 2:38 PMReply

    Great. Another "gritty" superhero movie. It's like filmmakers do not understand how inherently ridiculous superhero movies are.

  • Emperor Zerg Rush | July 15, 2014 2:34 PMReply

    I honestly think Mara doesn't understand what she's talking about. Which is not meant negatively but from the viewpoint of someone who confesses to never having read comics but liking comic book films she could easily be assuming the plot could be The Great Gatsby starring cosmic-powered superheroes.

    The other possible scenario is that in their move to translate what she said, the originating source may have taken liberty with the interpretation and what followed afterward when it trickled out to more outlets is a bunch of fan outrage over possibly ignoring five decades of stories they could be mining for content.

    I wouldn't expect as drastic a shift as one might hope for with this. They'll likely incorporate elements from stories most are familiar with but try to keep an original spin on them in hopes of spawning a proper franchise in the same style as Batman Begins did.

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