Fantastic Four (2005)

Starring: Jessica Alba, Ioan Gruffudd, Chris Evans, Michael Chiklis
Director: Tim Story

U.S. Opening Date: July 8, 2005


With the recent dramatic advances in CGI effects, it was only inevitable that someone would sooner or later get round to filming what has always been considered unfilmable (see * note below), namely the well-known Marvel comic book title, The Fantastic Four.

Oh, yeah, make that advances in CGI and the huge box office returns of other dysfunctional Marvel superheroes such as X-Men and Spider-man (best not mention Hulk here though).

After several false starts, the project has finally started filming in Vancouver, B.C. and will arrive in U.S. theatres on July 8, 2005. Despite going for the cheaper option of filming in Canada, Fantastic Four features a cast of unknowns. See if you recognize any of the names here: Jessica Alba (as Sue Storm), Ioan Gruffudd (as Reed Richards) and Chris Evans (as Johnny Storm, a.k.a. the Human Torch). The producers probably realized that the special effects are going to the star in case so why bother splashing on any real stars then?

Speaking of which, the character of Ben Grimm (a.k.a. the Thing) isn’t going to be a CGI-generated character like Gollum in Lord of the Rings or Jar Jar Binks in Phantom Menace, but instead will be actor Michael Chiklis underneath layers of latex in a suit (see pic). Go figure.

Anyway, the Human Torch ought to be a doozie to get right. In the old animated TV series they plain left his character out and replaced him with a cute floating robot instead!

(*Note: Unfilmable? In fact a Fantastic Four movie was made in 1994. It was never supposed to be released and according to the IMDb Fantastic Four creator Stan Lee said that, unbeknown to the cast and crew, this movie was never intended to be released, and was made only because the studio who owned the rights to make a Fantastic Four movie would have lost the rights if they did not begin production by a certain date. This movie is by all accounts quite terrible and only available as a bootleg. Still it is one of the most popular bootleg videos along with the dreaded Star Wars Christmas Special . . .)

(**Note: The Dr. Doom pic below is kinda disappointing. Don't know why - remember this was where Lucas got the idea for Darth Vader in the first place . . .)




Plot Summary for Fantastic Four (2005):

When an experimental space voyage goes awry, four people are changed by cosmic rays. Reed Richards, inventor and leader of the group gains the ability to stretch his body, and takes the name, Mr. Fantastic. His girlfriend, Sue Storm, gains the ability to turn invisible and create force fields, calling herself the Invisible Woman. Her younger brother Johnny Storm gains the ability to control fire, including covering his own body with flame, becoming the Human Torch. Pilot Ben Grimm is turned into a super-strong rock creature calling himself Thing. Together, they use their unique powers to explore the strange aspects of the world, and to foil the evil plans of Doctor Doom.

Photo Gallery # 1:

(Click on images to download larger versions)

Photo Gallery # 2:

(Click on images to enlarge them)


Trivia about Fantastic Four:

(Click on image to enlarge it)

  • Chris Columbus and Peyton Reed were each attached as director at some point.
  • Not the first Fantastic Four movie. Another was made in 1994 but never released because unbeknown to the cast and crew, the movie was never intended to be released, and was made only because the studio who owned the rights to make a Fantastic Four movie would have lost the rights if they did not begin production by a certain date.
  • Steven Soderbergh and Sean Astin were both interested in directing.
  • George Clooney and Brendan Fraser were considered for the part of Reed Richards.
  • Paul Walker was considered for the part of Johnny Storm.
  • Julia Stiles, Kate Bosworth, Rachel McAdams, Elizabeth Banks and 'Kadee Strickland' were considered for the role of Susan Storm/Invisible Girl.
  • Tim Robbins was considered for Dr. Doom
  • To get down the speech in preparation for his role as the Thing, Michael Chiklis read to his children wearing the prosthetic teeth that accompany the Thing's costume.





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