Yesterday, we saw shareholders agree to the historic $71.3 billion merger between Disney and 21st Century Fox. For fans of Marvel, this is a huge move since now the X-Men and Fantastic Four can join the Marvel Cinematic Universe. I personally think this isn’t good since Disney will now dominate an unprecedented amount of the entertainment industry. However, it happened, and it’s only a matter of time before Marvel’s first family and the mutants join the Avengers to fight Galactus. I thought it would be nice to try fan-cast the MCU versions of the Fantastic Four for this article. I’ll be following up with an X-Men one sometime in the next few days.
We’ve had three of these movies in the past and none of the lead actors in past Fantastic Four movies are eligible (looking at you, Chris Evans). I’m going to just put this out there, but I actually like the old Fantastic Four movies. They’re really stupid and wacky, but they have a comic book camp that I found really fun when I was younger. The only awful thing in “Rise of the Silver Surfer” was Galactus being a giant cloud. “Fant4stic” on the other hand is one of the worst comic book movies of all time. It’s lifeless, skips over the most crucial aspects of the team dynamic, and a massive missed opportunity. However, I don’t blame Josh Trank for the movie’s demise. He’s been very open about how the studio intervened and didn’t let him tell the story he sought out to make.
For this article, I’m taking a look at the main four characters as well as some supporting roles and villains. I put down multiple options for some of the roles depending on how Marvel wants to play it out. I personally think the MCU version of the Fantastic Four should be a little older, maybe in their late 30s or early 40s. They would be Tony Stark’s contemporaries. I don’t think it would be a good idea to do a younger team like they did in “Fant4stic” since it’s only been three years since that film came out.
Alright, let’s get to it:
Reed Richards/Mr. Fantastic – Eddie Redmayne
For the smartest guy in the team, I’m looking for someone who can pull off the curiosity that Reed represents. This might be a weird choice so don’t close the page quite yet, but my pick is Eddie Redmayne. Redmayne has already shown us that he can pull off someone who constantly seeks to find answers with “The Theory of Everything,” which garnered him an Oscar win. Moreover, if he ditches the socially awkward aspect of Newt Scamander in “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them,” he could pull it off. He’s had some minor missteps and this might be a little typecasted, but Mr. Fantastic needs to be reliable yet spontaneous. At 36, he would be the right age for when the Fantastic Four join the MCU and deliver a Reed Richards we haven’t seen before.
My other choices for Mr. Fantastic were Matt Smith and John Krasinski. An alternative that I’ve seen a lot is Jon Hamm, and I wouldn’t mind that at all either.
Sue Storm/Invisible Woman – Allison Williams
Allison Williams had a great commanding presence in “Get Out,” which makes her ready for Sue Storm/Invisible Woman. She’s also really good in “Girls” so that’s another thing. I think she gives off a strong vibe that would be great for a powerful superhero like Invisible Woman. I think she would work really well with Redmayne as her charismatic intelligence would easily blend well with his more inquisitive smarts. She’s currently 30, but by the time the MCU gets to the Fantastic Four, she would be in the right age range to play the role.
Other people I considered were Rosamund Pike and Elizabeth Banks. Both of them are extremely talented actresses who fit different takes on the character. If you want pure charisma, Banks is perfect for it. If you want someone a little colder, I feel that Pike could do that really well. Ultimately, Williams edges both of them out for me because I think she’s the best of both worlds for what Marvel could do with the character.
Johnny Storm/Human Torch – Billy Magnussen or Glen Powell
“Game Night” was one of my favorite movies this year so far, and that was partly due to Magnussen’s hilarious antics. I think he definitely has the physicality and comedic timing to play the lighthearted aspects of Johnny Storm, but I think he can pull off his caring attitude towards his family. At 33, he’s a little older than Allison Williams, but he doesn’t necessarily have to be the younger brother. Also, 33 and 30 are not too far off so Magnussen could play it a little younger.
Maybe an equally interesting choice would be Glen Powell, who’s 29. He definitely looks the role, and has shown he can do comedy. I recently saw Netflix’s “Set It Up,” a rom-com in which he plays the lead, and that certainly describes some aspects of Johnny. Both of these actors gave great comedic performances in the past, which is why I’m evenly torn between these actors so I’m putting them both up as top choice.
Ben Grimm/The Thing – Terry Crews
The Thing has to be the perfect combination of heroic, funny, sarcastic, and protecting. With recent work in “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” and “Sorry to Bother You,” Terry Crews has continued to impress me and make me laugh while also never letting anyone forget that he’s a total badass. My guess is the MCU would go CGI with this one so Crew’s voice is going to have to do most of the heavy lifting. I think he could do an awesome job saying the popular catchphrase, “It’s Clobberin’ Time!”
Victor Von Doom/Dr. Doom – Ioan Gruffudd
Would you look at that, it came full circle! Yes, Gruffudd played Reed Richards in the old “Fantastic Four” movies. However, a lot of Doom’s character is dependent on his distinction from Reed Richards. Gruffudd is pretty different from Redmayne and has a more stoic attitude that would allow him to one-up the team. There’s also the notion that Gruffudd’s inclusion would allow him to make a big comeback. I thought he was fine in the first two “Fantastic Four” movies, and at 44, he’s only a little older than the rest of the cast. Since Dr. Doom isn’t just a one-off villain, I think Gruffudd would do a great job being included within the rest of the MCU for future films.
Mole Man – Matthew Macfadyen or Brendan Fraser
For the team’s first big villain, I’m looking for someone who can just be super over-the-top and zany. I wish I could say Toby Jones, but he was already in the Captain America movies as Arnim Zola. However, I’m going with Matthew MacFadyen. He’s played crazy before in HBO’s “Succession,” but I think this would allow him to just have a ton of fun with the character. The other pick I had was Brendan Fraser, who we haven’t seen in like forever. He could equally pull of the role and looks surprisingly similar to Macfadyen. His casting would also generate a ton of buzz on the internet.
Silver Surfer – Rami Malek
Rami Malek is amazing in “Mr. Robot” and looks to get some big critical praise when “Bohemian Rhapsody” comes out. I think he could really do something great with Silver Surfer since he has the physicality that Doug Jones did really well in “Rise of the Silver Surfer.” Moreover, he’s a versatile actor, which means Marvel could really take his character down the Jack Kirby route and do some classic zany comic adaptations with him.
Galactus – Bryan Cranston
After seeing a giant Peter Dinklage in “Infinity War,” I want Marvel do do justice to the character and actually have a really big guy with the pink/blue outfit and everything. That’s the only way they can one-up Thanos. That’s why I’m going with none other than Bryan Cranston. He can be incredibly scary in “Breaking Bad” and brings a gravity in that show that few other actors have done that well in television.
Namor the Sub-Mariner – Zachary Quinto
I don’t know why, but I always used to equate Namor in the comics with Spock from “Star Trek.” Maybe it’s the ears or just how I imagined he would speak in my head, but that’s just my thought. This led me to the conclusion that Zachary Quinto would be perfect for playing Namor. Aside from Quinto being amazing in J.J. Abrams’ “Star Trek” films, he’s been a great actor in “American Horror Story.” He for sure has the physicality that Namor needs (since, you know… he’s shirtless) and would be a great distinction from Jason Mamoa’s Aquaman since people always get them confused.
Okay, that was that! What do you think about these actors? Who would you have play these iconic characters? Feel free to let me know in the comments section!
Also, if you like this article, feel free to check out my review of “Mission Impossible: Fallout” by clicking here! Thanks 🙂