Marvel films usually make a lot of money, but this just wasn't the case after Fantastic Four was released. The film was so bad that a rumor started about Marvel getting the movie rights for it from Fox, but this doesn't appear to be happening as yet. Should Fox or Marvel, depending on who owns it, decide to pursue Fantastic Four 2 or some other form of Fantastic Four, here are Four Ways to Save the Fantastic Four Movie Franchise.
According to iO9, there were a lot of rumors on October 15, 2015, that Fox exchanged the movie rights to Fantastic Four for the two X-men series that are coming soon. This rumor has been dispelled. Considering that Marvel has something going with Spider-Man that will bring the web-slinger out from Sony and into Marvel's Cinematic Universe, it was thought that perhaps a deal was taking place with Marvel's first family of the super team.
2015 Fantastic Four film was a flop, not accepted by comic fans or critics. Then again, most feel the same way about the 2005 film and its sequel, Rise of the Silver Surfer. The issue is that there was already a sequel planned for the 2015 film, but still not known if 20th Century Fox still wants the rights for another Fantastic Four movie. If this is to happen, here are four ways to save this movie franchise:
1) Forget the Origin Story
For some reason, superhero movies are obsessed with showing us stories of how the hero came to be, and the reboots often tell the same story. Fantastic Four shifted from its 2005 space origins to something of a teleporter, but it doesn't really matter. The next Fantastic Four movie could easily begin with the characters with superpowers and settled for years, and it honestly wouldn't matter. Removing the origin story is the plan for the next Spider-Man reboot.
2) Emphasize the Family Relations
It is possible that Fantastic Four is a dated concept for superhero teams, and they should strive to be more like X-men or Avengers, who often don't like each other. What makes the Fantastic Four different is they are family. Reed (Mr. Fantastic) is married to Sue (Invisible Woman). Johnny (Human Torch) is Sue's brother. Ben (The Thing) is Reed's best friend and his son's godfather. The Fantastic Four did have problems, but the reason they worked them out is because they respected their familial relations. These are concepts that were explored much better in The Incredibles, a team that has super-powers that are similar to the Fantastic Four.
3) Grow the Characters Up
Since the Fantastic Four are originally comic-book characters, they have been developed over decades. The films always attempt to show how they started out, but they should emphasize what they eventually became. By the early seventies comics, Reed was a natural leader who was smart enough to realize that intelligence isn't everything. In the films, Sue is eye-candy, but in the comics, she is wise, motherly, and downright strong. Johnny in the comics is a hot-head, but he eventually settled down to being more mature and not wanting to be seen as a playboy. As for Ben, he eventually accepted that he was going to be the Thing.
4) Not Villains, but Story
With most comic book movies, most want to see who the villain is rather than what the story will be about. One of the things that made the Fantastic Four great was not the villains like Dr. Doom and Mole Man, but they would find themselves in adventures that were simply amazing. They story wouldn't need a villain if it was done right.
However, the one story that they could attempt again is the Silver Surfer/Galactus story. The film version reduced Galactus to a big cloud, but in the comics, he is a giant who takes on the Fantastic Four atop their Baxter Building Tower in the heart of New York City. This is the story that I wanted to see, and it would be the superhero equivalent of Die Hard. It would be an epic adventure on the screen that would be true to the source material.