CBMB: The Fantastic Future of Michael B. Jordan

After a near disastrous Mexican interview with Fantastic Four star Kate Mara earlier this week, it appears that the folks at Fox are doing all they can to walk back those comments and salve the wounded souls of fanboys and girls out there.

Mara has already alleged that her answer was “mistranslated“, but MTV Movies recently sat down with Mara’s on-screen brother (possibly from another mother?), Michael B. Jordan, to discuss a bit about his career, but to also focus on the aesthetic of Fantastic Four. However, Jordan’s statements may not exactly lessen the angst-ridden fanboy or girl.

When asked about the furor Mara’s answers caused, Jordan noted that he understand that audiences are thirsty for any bit of news on the secretive project.

“Yeah, we have been pretty much in our own world, that’s really the only way we could get a project like this done. It is so massive, so many moving parts, so many moving pieces, things are changing every day. The script is evolving, [you make] on set decisions on the fly, things are always constantly changing.”

Well, there is no mistranslation here: Jordan states that the script continues to “evolve” which is sometimes code for “we ripped up the script and are starting over from scratch”. Again, I warned that his statements may not ease fanboy pain. This sounds many miles apart from what Marvel Studios is about when it comes to creating their hero pictures.

Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige characterized their productions a high-level, big-budget collaborative film when he discussed his decision to part ways with Edgar Wright on Ant-Man. Marvel is will known to laying out the visual aesthetic, and in some cases, the action beats sometime even before they have a director. This “plug-and-play” approach to their filmmaking allows Marvel to crank out 2-3 movies per year.

Marvel Studios has no creative input on any of Fox’s Marvel properties, yet retains a producer credit for Feige and Stan Lee in a somewhat ceremonial sense. There are some who believe that Marvel Studios is routing against Fox’s success (as well as Sony‘s with Amazing Spider-Man), so that their movie rights will revert back to them (and Disney). Common knowledge is that Fox and Sony must have Marvel projects happening within 6 years of the last production or else they lose exclusivity. However, as soon as production on any of these titles kicks in (even in the development phase), Fox and Sony’s rights “clock” starts back at zero.

Fantastic Four’s clock kicked in the moment writing started on the new script. Even though that script continues to be in flux, Jordan is clearly dialed in with a friend and director he has worked with before in Josh Trank. Jordan went on to say that “Josh’s vision is very clear and he knows exactly what he wants, and he gives us room to adapt and to play. That’s what I kind of think sets us apart, is that this is going to be grounded and unconventional.”

As far as Trank’s take on the classic Marvel characters, Jordan believes that his vision will set their version apart. “It’s not your typical superhero film, you know, we aren’t looking at this as like, being superheroes. We’re more or less a bunch of kids that had an accident and we have disabilities now that we have to cope with, and try to find a life afterwards – try to be as normal as we can.”

“It’s superheroes! You know, not just superheroes. It’s fiction. You’ve got to ground it as much as you can to make [audience members] feel relatable to these characters, no matter what age they are or what time of their life.”

Fox has entrusted Trank with revising a struggling Marvel franchise that many see vast loads of potential yet realized. Jordan may be close enough with Trank to have some input into where the tone of this movie heads, especially as Jordan’s own star continues to skyrocket. So lets hope that these two talented souls can resurrect a feature film version of heroes everyone is longing to see. On a side note, Trank also has been tapped by Lucasfilm to direct a Star Wars Standalone film, so he must know what he’s doing.

Fantastic Four is currently filming in Baton Rouge, Louisiana and is slated for release on June 19, 2015 with a sequel already set for July 14, 2017.

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