Even though multiple sources told us that 20th Century Fox would not have any footage from Josh Trank’s The Fantastic Four at San Diego Comic-Con, many (including myself) felt disappointed when the Fox panel in Hall H concluded after some incredible footage from Matthew Vaughn’s Kingsman: The Secret Service -- with nary a mention of next summer’s Four film. Lo and behold, we all come back to our computers to find the above, leaked image waiting for us.
What is it, exactly? Well, the Twitter account of Florida-based Justified Films went a little hashtag crazy to say that it is a leaked image of The Thing from The Fantastic Four. You can tell that there is a lot of green screen going on behind ol’ rock head, so this could be the stand in that visual effects artists will use when they digitally add in Ben Grimm, and his rocky alter ego of The Thing.
Because in the movie, he’s going to be played by Jamie Bell, who looks like this:
OK, fine. That was a while ago.
I still think that Fox missed a golden opportunity to start getting fans on the side of this new Fantastic Four. Despite the fact that Rise of the Silver Surfer wasn’t a bad movie, the cinematic legacy of the Fantastic Four isn’t stellar, and showing even a little bit of footage in Hall H could have gone a long way toward easing the minds of fans who aren’t yet sure what to make of a superhero film that could be using found footage to tell a non-origin story about non-superheroes. Producer and co-screenwriter Simon Kinberg said in interviews leading up to Comic-Con that the movie just wasn’t ready to show its wares yet, and that may be true. But getting ahead of the rush with a small Hall H presentation might have stopped leaks like this… and yet, right now, this is all fans have to lean on.
Here’s the thing (no pun intended). We don’t know anything about Justified Entertainment, so we don’t know how they got their hands on this Thing bust. It might not be real. If it’s legit, it’s an intimidating-looking Ben Grimm, and a far cry from the Michael Chiklis days. But it flies in the face of a lot of the stuff we are hearing about The Thing, and how he will look in Josh Trank’s version of The Fantastic Four. We’ll keep tracking this story to see if the image is real. For now, The Fantastic Four sidestepped Hall H, but will reach theaters on June 19, 2015.