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Simon Kinberg Compares 'The Fantastic Four' Reboot To 'Batman Begins'

Photo of Kevin Jagernauth By Kevin Jagernauth | The Playlist May 27, 2014 at 1:17PM

While the comic world is still buzzing about "Ant-Man" and the exit of Edgar Wright, another big comic property is coming next summer, and so far, details have remained tightly under wraps. Fox is rebooting "The Fantastic Four," entrusting Josh Trank to erase the memory of the 2005 and 2007 films, and update the characters for the current era of tentpole superheroes. But so far, all we know is that Miles Teller (Reed Richards/Mr. Fantastic), Michael B. Jordan (Johnny Storm/Human Torch), Kate Mara (Sue Storm) and Jamie Bell (Ben Grimm/The Thing) are leading the cast, with Toby Kebbell as the villain Dr. Doom. But what about the tone? Well, forget about the goofy predecessors.
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Fantastic Four Miles Teller, Michael B. Jordan, Kate Mara & Jamie Bell

While the comic world is still buzzing about "Ant-Man" and the exit of Edgar Wright, another big comic property is coming next summer, and so far, details have remained tightly under wraps. Fox is rebooting "The Fantastic Four," entrusting Josh Trank to erase the memory of the 2005 and 2007 films, and update the characters for the current era of tentpole superheroes. But so far, all we know is that Miles Teller (Reed Richards/Mr. Fantastic), Michael B. Jordan (Johnny Storm/Human Torch), Kate Mara (Sue Storm) and Jamie Bell (Ben Grimm/The Thing) are leading the cast, with Toby Kebbell as the villain Dr. Doom. But what about the tone? Well, forget about the goofy predecessors.

Chatting with The Daily Beast, Kinberg—who is writing and producing the film—reveals that this new take is borrowing a page from the much copied Christopher Nolan playbook. "The tone of this movie will feel as unique as when you saw 'Iron Man,' 'X-Men,' or 'Batman Begins' for the first time. It’s not as goofy as the first movies; it has humor in it, but the humor is much more real and comes from character, not pratfall jokes," he explained. "It’s a much more dramatic film than it is a comedy. I would say it falls somewhere between Raimi’s first couple of 'Spider-Man' movies and 'Chronicle.' "

It's certainly an ambitious group of touchstones to be aiming for, but one of the most curious elements so far has been the age of the ensemble, which has skewed younger than many expected. But there's a reason for that, as the superhero movie will also be mixing in another genre. "We were shooting the Washington D.C. finale sequence in 'Days of Future Past' and I talked to Josh, and he had such a clear vision of what he wanted to do with the film that was so different from the other movies—it was grounded, real, gritty, and what it would really be like if you went through a transformation and lost control of your body," Kinberg says. "That, coupled with him wanting it to be a coming-of-age movie, felt fresh to me."

Again, it's an interesting approach and perhaps suggests that Fox might be playing around with canon a bit to make something relatable and interesting on the screen, and not being overly concerned with sticking to the page. Thoughts? You know where to leave 'em. "The Fantastic Four" arrives on June 19, 2015.

This article is related to: Simon Kinberg, Fantastic Four


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