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How would you introduce the Fantastic Four into the Marvel Cinematic Universe?

Tg11

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Personally since it is all but a formality that Reed, Sue, Johnny, Ben, Victor Von Doom, etc. are on their way home back to Marvel since they more or less have the rights back, it begs the question of how you would introduce the Fantastic Four into the MCU?

Here is how I would do it:

- Well in Spider-Man Homecoming, Tony Stark/Iron Man (Robert Downey, Jr.) sold the Avengers Tower but we never knew just who bought Avengers Tower; so what if they could reveal that the Leland Baxter Paper Company purchased the Avengers Tower. The tower would, therefore, become the Baxter Building.

In the comics, the Baxter Building is in New York City and it’s where the Fantastic Four’s headquarters is located. The Leland Baxter Paper Company owns the building, but the Fantastic Four purchase the top five floors.
This would allow for an iconic landmark to stay in New York City, and it would retroactively make it appear that Marvel was setting up the Fantastic Four years in advance.

- Or another way being:

- Reed Richards, Sue Storm, Johnny Storm and Ben Grimm are all scientists of S.H.I.E.L.D. who went missing after being on a space mission for decades. However, they find their way back to Earth post-Avengers 4 and have already come into their powers. We could see this all in Avengers 4 like in a post-credit scene or something as a means of introducing them or seeing it in their own film like in the first act. You pretty much skip over their origin and differentiate from the 2005 and 2015 versions but make it better.
 
The John Cusack-doppelgänger Reed from Fan4stic invents an interdimensional traveling machine that sends him and the rest of the members from Fan4stic(Kentucky fried chicken-looking Thing, Black Johnny Storm, blonde-wig Sue Storm) to the Marvel cinematic universe after his native universe is facing destruction and is being erased from existence.

Wa-lah! That’s the way to do it!

Kevin Feige needs to hire me ASAP. Kevin Fiege doesn’t need to reboot. Don’t cast John Kraksinki as Reed, Alison Brie as Sue, Seth Rogen as Ben, Dacre Montgomery as Johnny. Just go with the fantastic(pun intended)cast we already have!
 
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Well it seems intergalactic space travel/time continuum makes sense since in the MCU that is the way to go lately hence Carol Danvers; it wouldn't surprise me if the Fantastic Four were introduced by way of being lost within another dimension or being in a black hole and then somehow finding their way out of it back to Earth
 
I think the film starring Marvel's first family should have a 1960's sci-fi vibe maybe even initially taking place in the 1960's (a younger Hank and Janet could make brief cameo).

Numerous articles have compared the microverse introduced in Antman to the negative zone. Perhaps becoming lost in here may result in entering another dimension entirely if when trying to exit back out of the microverse in some particular fashion?

Anyway, I think seguing off of the Antman franchise would be a good possibility. Antman 3 could center around Antman and Wasp along with Hank and Janet re-entering the microverse to escape whatever fate awaits them end of Avengers 4. From there, they end up entering the Negative Zone Hank remembers hearing a certain Reed Richards write a paper on back in the 1960's (which of course could showcase a number of flashback scenes with younger Hank and Janet).

For the FF movie (anticipation built up somewhat from Antman 3), I like the notion of the Fantastic Four as being a bit time-displaced perhaps meeting up with an older Hank and Janet who not seen since their younger years (this meeting could perhaps be an openning to the FF movie continuing off of a post-credits scene of Antman 3). The movie could open up with this meeting as Fantastic Four guided out of stasis-like imprisonment within the Negative Zone. I think a retro futuristic look would suit them as introduce themselves to the modern world around them.
 
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Another way could be:

Like you said starting the first portion of the film in the 1960s since a Marvel film hasn't taken place during the 1960s. Reed, Johnny, Sue and Ben of course being from the 1960s are S.H.I.E.L.D. scientists. However, if S.H.I.E.L.D. has been around for decades and decades if this film does start off in the 1960s then wouldn't it make sense for Peggy Carter as well as Howard Stark, Tony's father to be in this film? I mean Howard he and Peggy are founding members of SHIELD and if the FF at that time work for SHIELD go on their space mission, I wonder if we could also incorporate other real life things from the 1960s such as President Kennedy depending on which Kennedy you use either JFK or RFK to help fund SHIELD?

Similar to Captain Marvel the Fantastic Four would go on their space mission and essentially end up getting "Lost in Space" as it would have a "Lost in Space" kind of vibe

However, you would also have the time travel aspect to this film as well
 
Nick Fury: hey, let me introduce you to the Fantastic Four.

Fantastic Four: hi, Avengers.

Avengers: hi, Fantastic Four.
 
^ha! Yeah that would do.

I reckon what the avengers did for politics and geopolitics and strange did for magic and spiritualism, the ff handle science. So they are the brave young people who unite humanity with a dream to explore the universe. They explore the negative zone and get blasted with cosmic rays and when they get back things are never the same again
 
Marvel could bring the Fantastic Four crashing back to Earth after revealing that they've either been lost in space or stuck in a wormhole and what seemed like months for them has been decades for the rest of us. Basically they are from the 1960s so half of their film would be a period piece taking place during the 1960s during the space race of NASA. SHIELD would still be a factor. Cameos from Peggy Carter and Howard Stark among others. That would leave the team like a fish out of water, thereby giving the franchise a different feel but there's one major problem with this; Reed Richards may be a genius but his 60s era inventions would look laughable compared to today's and he'd no longer seem that smart.

Johnny being a 60s teenager would have to adjust to being a young man in the 2010s.
 
That would be fun. I wonder if it would be hard to establish reed after shuri was established as the cleverest character in the marvel u?

I suppose they might have different fields. Shuri has engineering, reed has astrophysics
 
One mistake that the Fantastic Four filmmakers always make is to introduce Doom in the FF origin movie. Doom is such a complex character he needs a whole movie dedicated to him not some stripped down version because you're contracting on the FF's origin story.

If you have to open up with a villain then make the version The Mole Man. MM has a simple backstory and a simple plan for world domination.
 
Reed Richards may be a genius but his 60s era inventions would look laughable compared to today's and he'd no longer seem that smart.

... or his '60s era inventions could do things that modern technology still can't do today - showing how amazing he really is.
 
If they had the rights now, ready to go, I'd like to see something like:

Opening of Avengers 4.

Tony: Richards, Von Doom, put that quantum drive away for now. I need you working on a time machine.

(Ultimately Von Doom would get involved with a side project trying to contact his dead mother, become injured in a lab explosion and take off, not to be heard from until some later film).

Opening of Spider-man 2:

Johnny: Hi, I'm Johnny Storm.

Peter: Peter Parker... Hey, who was that hot babe who dropped you off?

Johnny: Huh? Oh, that was just my sister.
 
... or his '60s era inventions could do things that modern technology still can't do today - showing how amazing he really is.

Plus he would be literally smarter than Tony, Shuri and Banner all put together
 
In the 80s/90s, the FF travel into space get sucked into the wormhole due to sabotage by Victor Von Doom. Fight Annihilus, then Galactus destroys the planet they are on, not before they escape to present time Earth.
 
Interesting ideas; still I think more people will want to see it if the characters have a certain nostalgic yet fresh feel to them when introduced.
I think building off of something already established is best way to gain interest from a general audience.

Also, the lost in space thing would be kind of interesting but so many MCU movies have gone out WAY beyond the solar system, hard to make this seem fresh and new unless of course build off of other movies to small degree. I suppose notion presented in Gaurdians 2 of earth beings having a connection to the light Ego needed could be expanded upon maybe with the FF getting their powers in present day perhaps through encounter with energy radiating off of celestial beings perhaps in Eternals movie (sort of matches how done in the comics just energy source different if works to build off of something introduced in another movie).

I still think my Antman idea would work better though. I think reactions to present day/learning to cope and find a purpose more interesting than scenes dealing with them learning to use their powers again. Reed could just be familiar with an alien type of technology yet still surprised and fascinated by internet/smart phones (an outside perspective looking at modern day society yet of course having knowledge of interdimensional physics and some types of alien tech.). :)
 
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One mistake that the Fantastic Four filmmakers always make is to introduce Doom in the FF origin movie. Doom is such a complex character he needs a whole movie dedicated to him not some stripped down version because you're contracting on the FF's origin story.

If you have to open up with a villain then make the version The Mole Man. MM has a simple backstory and a simple plan for world domination.

I agree about not using doctor doom. He’s too hard to introduce with four other main characters.

Maybe they should break the mound and have a variety of colourful characters the FF meet, like a wizard of oz type feel. For example, it would be so much fun to introduce terminus, I mean look at this visual



Deliciously 60s sci fi and very Kirby. I mean the whole thing should be a love letter to lee and Kirby. Plus it would set up the celestials which would help the eternals. Then maybe you could also have mole man and annihilius, attacked from many sides. Sort of like the comic where there’s a new adventure every week with connecting threads narratively.
 
I agree about not using doctor doom. He’s too hard to introduce with four other main characters.

Maybe they should break the mound and have a variety of colourful characters the FF meet, like a wizard of oz type feel. For example, it would be so much fun to introduce terminus, I mean look at this visual



Deliciously 60s sci fi and very Kirby. I mean the whole thing should be a love letter to lee and Kirby. Plus it would set up the celestials which would help the eternals. Then maybe you could also have mole man and annihilius, attacked from many sides. Sort of like the comic where there’s a new adventure every week with connecting threads narratively.

i like this idea. It would be like the dark Knight where the it feels like to chapters in one movie.
 
This guy on the reddit thread really GETS The fantastic four imho - username idclip42

The top comment about them getting the episode count wrong (and, you know, the source of the info) kind of kills this rumor immediately, but I can't help being captivated by the what if?of it.

  • As an FF fan, I really don't want them to spend runtime on their origin. Their powers aren't the important part.
    • I think the cleanest, most likely way to avoid that is to follow in the footsteps of the original Fantastic Four #1 - we meet them after the accident, laying low.
    • Sprinkling them into different projects as cameos, then, could help establish that foundation of "they're here, they're just laying low for now."
  • The "fighting a defamation case" detail is interestingly specific and unexpected.
    • If he's "fighting" the case, does that imply that he's fighting an accusation of defamation? How does that work if he's laying low?
    • Or am I reading too much into the wording, and maybe it's the other way around? Maybe it's some general blaming him for the rocket crash.
    • While fighting the defamation case while hiding almost anonymously behind a lawyer fits the "laying low" idea, it also feels really shoehorned, an awkward excuse for his only appearing at the end.
Also, "Originally was meant to debut in No Way Home before landing in She Hulk"? Where exactly would he have fit in that movie? For all it's scale and significance, that was a tightly written and executed movie.

another post by idclip42:
I'm not saying rush through character development. I'm saying rush through the stuff that isn't character development, that isn't important to enjoying a classic Fantastic Four adventure.

I'm saying skip the expository stuff. We don't need it, and there's so much better stuff that it gets in the way of. We don't need to see them go up in a rocket for the movie to communicate Reed's guilt and Ben's struggle. We don't need to see them get bombarded by cosmic rays to understand that they got their powers in space.

Their character development happened over the course of 60 years after the accident, not just within those first couple months we don't see in Fantastic Four #1. The "definitive versions" of these characters are complex arcs encompassing 60 years, not just the stage they're at in comics today (see: Dan Slott's Reed in DS2). Put another way, most MCU leads have consistently reflected the "definitive versions" of their comic selves, despite complex character arcs and drastic changes.

So pick up with them after the accident, and then follow them on a fantastic adventure. That's the appeal of the title. That's what a Fantastic Four movie should sell. That's how we dive right into the real characters and their real arcs. Everything else is exposition and prequel-itis.

(This is one place (of many) that the 2005 and 2007 movies tripped up - they put all their focus on the expository stuff - the accident, Reed and Sue pre-marriage, how they got the Baxter Building and Fantasticar. They spent their runtimes inching towards status-quo, and never actually got around to what makes a Fantastic Four story a Fantastic Four story.)

another great comment by idclip:

The story, the arc, the “journey” of the Fantastic Four isn’t “they got bombarded by cosmic rays and became the world’s first super team”, it’s everything that came after

..We didn’t need to spend a movie on how Indiana Jones got to adventuring, or how (original) Captain Kirk got to trekking, or how Tony Stark got to tinkering. Those are all just baselines. They’re just story engines. So why do we need to spend a movie on how the Fantastic Four got to adventuring if we can avoid it?
 
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I had this idea last night, you know how back in the silver age marvel comics existed in the universe but they were writing the biographies for the heroes?

ok, so we open up on Stan and Jack, recounting the story of these fantastic heroes. That way, you can use the narrative storytelling from the comics eg: you can have a voiceover of Stan saying stuff like “meanwhile…in the gloomy land of Latveria”

anyway, the final scene is them saying “and then what happened” and we hear someone say “hey!”, camera pans over and it’s the fantastic four listening from the window. They say “nice work guys, keep it up” and Ben says something like “and try to capture my pretty side next time!” And then they zoom off in the fantasticar.

that way you can even include Stan and Jack if they do the Reed and Sue wedding cameo idea
 
So, how's this -

Cast
Reed Richards: William Jackson Harper
Sue Storm: Blake Lively
Johnny Storm: Dacre Montgomery
Ben Grimm: Seth Rogen

Dr. Harvey Elder/Mole Man: Rick Hoffman (Or Paul Giametti if they want a bigger name)
Blastarr: M.C. Gainey (Again, if they go for a big name, Christopher Walken)
Wyatt Wingfoot: Martin Sensmeier

*introduced in other projects*
Abigail Brand: Emilia Clarke
Henry Peter Gyrich: Damian Lewis

Plot
We meet Reed and co. working for SWORD. Reed is trying to crack interstellar travel to match the alien tech. But post-Secret Invasion, Henry Peter Gyrich takes over. He isn't interested in reaching the stars, only in fighting them, and he shuts Reed's project down. Of course, he goes rogue - he, Sue, Ben and Johnny steal the ship, activate the drive, hit the storm and blast themselves into the Negative Zone, gaining powers in the process.

We see the team go through adjusting to their powers and working through the conflict that stems from that while learning to survive in and explore the Negative Zone. One by one they are collected by Blastarr, who wants them to defend his empire against rival threats. The Four debate the ethics of helping one tyrant against an even worse enemy. But SWORD crashes the party when they successfully recreate Reed's party and send a rescue mission led by Abigail Brand. Our heroes have to unite when Harvey Elder turns on the rest of the SWORD agents, taking control of a legion of monsters and leading them back to Earth. The Four mend their differences to work as a team and stop Harvey's monsters, becoming Earth's newest heroes in the process.

Teasers: Either reveal Doom or, if he's already been revealed in a prior movie, have him reach out to the now famous & powerful Reed. Back in the Negative Zone, Blastarr schemes of finding a new, safer world to conquer as the Annihilation Wave draws nearer to his empire.


I think that would be a good way to work through the origin in a way that also expands the MCU and really leans into the science & exploration side of the Fantastic Four that we've never really gotten to see before on screen.
 
As much as I like that backstory, with Gyrich taking over as head of SWORD and shutting down Reed, etc. etc. I would really like for the MCU to stick to its guns and move away from origin stories. The story is the family dynamic & their celebrity status as some of the world's most beloved explorers and superheroes--its not about the the cosmic storm or whatever MCU-replacement is cooked up.

Anyway, this is what I've been leaning towards lately... I think you're right on the money with Mole Man. In my plot treatment below, I've treated him as a hero-figure for Reed originally, almost like a surrogate father when his real father Nathaniel Richards (i.e. Kang) disappears from his life. But as fun as Mole Man & his monsters are, I think the story needs a second antagonist who is racing beat Reed & the Fantastic Four in discovering Subterranea and all its wonders (and treasure) first. For me, that'd be Red Ghost and his Super Apes.


PLOT SYNOPSIS
When he was a child, Reed Richards always dreamed of scientific exploration and adventure—it’s how he coped with the pain of his father’s sudden abandonment.

up-31.gif


Dr. Harvey Elder, Reed’s childhood hero, was a famous scientist explorer who was mocked by his peers for his Hollow Earth theories. One day, he sought to prove them all wrong and mounted an expedition to his supposed lost world at the center of the Earth. He was never seen again…

lucas-leydet-cloud.jpg


Years later, Reed and his super-powered family are studying the stillborn Celestial Tiamut which still rests in the Indian Ocean after the events of Eternals. The stone giant is emitting low levels of cosmic radiation—the same energy signature as the rays that imbued the four of them with their fantastic powers several months prior.

5ac2a2519f20f7fe-600x338.png


After the accident, the four moved into the Baxter Building—a state-of-the-art think tank located in the former home to the Avengers and run by Dr. Willie Lumpkin, a surrogate father figure for Reed (Stan Lee’s likeness makes a cameo as Leeland Baxter, founder of the Baxter Foundation).

Subterranea_from_Fantastic_Four_Vol_1_575_002.jpg


The Fantastic Four soon discover a pathway within the Celestial’s body and journey inside their Fantasticar to a paradise dimension filled with monstrous creatures ruled by a grizzly, mutated, Harvey Elder. He found the Hollow Earth he was searching for all those years ago-- it just happened to be inside of an infant Celestial deep within the Earth’s core!

1add8be3c09a3e6526767f47fe57ed51.jpg


Ivan Kragoff with his Super Apes seeks the lost world within the Celestial too to claim any discovered treasures for profit—putting him in direct conflict with his rival Reed throughout the film.

FF-MCU-VILLAINS-Mole-Man.jpg


To save the world from an invasion of monsters from Subterranea led by a vengeful and embittered Mole Man, the Fantastic Four must work together as a family and embrace their newfound fame as the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s First Family

Marvel-Studios-Will-Announce-Fantastic-Four-Cast-By-Early-2022-01.jpg
 
The FF's origin I think needs addressed, but it doesn't have to be what the movie is about exclusively. Doing it in dialogue or brief flashback or newscast or whatever would do it. But I do think we need to understand their place in the MCU.
 
I once suggested skipping the origin and having Reed Richards pre-established in a scene in another movie where they need to consult with him and he uses his powers to reach to grab something. However, since my idea is similar to what happened in Doctor Strange, I'm backing off.

Instead, I do think the origin should be addressed but not dwelt upon. I saw someone suggest putting it in the credits. My suggestion would be similar: put it in a pre-credits scene. Just have them launch, run into cosmic rays, land, and get powers all before the Marvel logo shows up. Then spend the rest of the movie doing a Fantastic Four movie.
 

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