In the grand scheme of things, Jon Watts departing the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s Fantastic Four reboot isn’t a death blow to the project. Sure, he’s more than familiar with how Kevin Feige’s franchise works, and he knows how to helm superhero spectaculars that generate billions at the box office, but it’s nothing compared to what the titular team has already been through.
1994’s bootleg favorite only existed as a cynical means to retain control of the rights to Marvel’s First Family, while Tim Story’s candy-colored duology is a snapshot of where the comic book genre as whole was in the mid-2000s, and it wasn’t a great place. Then, of course, there’s Josh Trank’s infamous Fant4stic, justifiably regarded as one of the worst films of its kind.
Jamie Bell admitted not too long ago that he’d be open to an MCU return if anyone was willing to have him, but the comments he made about Fantastic Four during a recent appearance on Radio Andy have gone viral following Watts leaving the director’s chair of the redux.
We made a film together, the ill-fated Fantastic Four reboot, which was famously a disaster. I think it has about a 9% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. No, I don’t think [it deserves a second look.] Save your money, save your time.”
He’s not wrong, with the mishandled blockbuster being torn to shreds by critics and ignored by audiences, which at least means that the bar to deliver the best Fantastic Four movie ever has been set very low for whoever steps in to replace Watts at the head of the MCU’s reboot.