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A user posting on the Louisiana-based message board TigerDroppings says that Josh Trank behaved irresponsibly on the set of The Fantastic Four, showing up late or "so high he couldn’t speak almost everyday." Someone immediately posted a confirmation on the site, though these are relatively anonymous posts and should be read with the proverbial grain of salt. The messages go on to say that Trank "trashed the house the production company rented for him" and allegedly "treated crew terribly."
So that’s what this was in reference to.
Meanwhile, today's fanboy gossip? When filmmakers behave badly & trash their house.— Umberto Gonzalez (@elmayimbe) December 23, 2014
This doesn’t sound like the behavior of someone who has been handed the keys to a standalone Star Wars movie. But it also isn’t the first report we have received regarding hiccups in the production schedule of The Fantastic Four. A planned reboot of the classic Marvel comic-book property, The Fantastic Four filmed in Baton Rogue last year, luring co-stars Miles Teller, Kate Mara, Michael B. Jordan and Jamie Bell to Louisiana in the Spring. Almost immediately, there were reports of recasting, comments by Mara that the movie wouldn’t be based on the comics, troublesome changes made to the origin of the FF’s chief adversary, and a general lack of information from the director or the studio. Not that Fox needs to show fans anything. But the longer fans go without having something tangible to talk about, analyze or argue over regarding The Fantastic Four, the more that rumors like this surface, gain traction and overwhelm the narrative.
The TigerDroppings posts haven’t been the first sign of trouble. Weeks ago, Devin Faraci at BadassDigest, who has good sources on comic-book movies, Tweeted:
Speaking of non-Marvel Studios Marvel movies: I've been hearing some troubling stuff about FANTASTIC FOUR. I'm still hopeful but very wary.— Devin Faraci (@devincf) December 10, 2014
And I keep coming back to that lack of a trailer – or any footage – to suggest that these mounting reports have some veracity to them. Latino-Review claims that a trailer for The Fantastic Four could be attached to Fox’s February thriller Kingsman: The Secret Service. I sincerely hope that is the case. Because like Faraci, I do have high hopes that Fox can figure out how to restore The Fantastic Four to a place of prominence, the way that they did for The X-Men. That franchise seemed to be in serious trouble after Brett Ratner’s X-Men: The Last Stand. Now? It’s enjoying a "Golden Age," with plenty of potential for growth on the horizon. Will we be saying the same thing about Fantastic Four come August, when the reboot finally opens? Let’s hope, for the sake of Marvel’s beloved "First Family."