Josh Trank Confirmed to Direct FANTASTIC FOUR; David Slade Exits DAREDEVIL

     July 12, 2012


Fox has moved a step forward on one superhero franchise and a step back on another.  First up, Deadline confirms that Josh Trank (Chronicle) will direct the reboot of Fantastic Four.  The studio is trying to get all of its superhero franchises back up and running, but right now X-Men is the only one with any gas.  The Wolverine is due to start filming next month, and the sequel to X-Men: First Class will shoot in January once Jennifer Lawrence has wrapped on The Hunger Games: Catching Fire.  Progress on Fantastic Four could mean that the studio has at least one new superhero movie every year.

However, the studio may not have much time left for Daredevil.  Hit the jump for more.

According to Deadline, David Slade (The Twilight Saga: Eclipse) is no longer attached to direct the Daredevil reboot.  Even though Fox reportedly has a script they like, Slade has hit a scheduling conflict because he’s set to direct the pilot episode of NBC’s Hannibal.  Slade’s exit on the project puts Fox in a tricky position because they need to get a Daredevil movie into production by this fall or else the rights revert to Marvel/Disney.  However, Deadline says the studio “isn’t hell bent on making Daredevil at this point.”

I’d be surprised if the studio chose to let the project go, since Marvel will absolutely not let one of their most popular superheroes lie fallow, especially when there’s the opportunity to fold him into the Marvel Movie Universe.  If Daredevil goes back to Marvel, and they make a smash hit, then Fox looks foolish for letting the character go.  But it’s worth noting that this isn’t a Sony/Spider-Man situation.  Spider-Man sells itself so Sony made sure they got The Amazing Spider-Man underway so the wall-crawler didn’t head over to Marvel/Disney.  Daredevil doesn’t have Spidey’s widespread popularity, so Fox may just be throwing money away if they try to make a Daredevil reboot just so Marvel/Disney can’t.

To play in the speculation game, I’m betting that if Fox decides to go forward on their Daredevil reboot, we should expect to see a journeyman director or a rising star attached to the project (someone with a bonafide hit but not enough clout to rock the boat).  There’s no time for an auteur to come in and start tinkering with the script and slowing down the process.  Personally, I’d rather the character go over to Marvel/Disney and be done right rather than Fox make the movie simply so it can be done.


  • Elisar

    Yes if it went to Marvel Movies/Disney it could be a big hit and make Fox look foolish if they let it go – but then it may have only been a big hit because it went back to Marvel/Disney. It doesn’t mean if Fox keep they could do a good job. Right now most fans trust Marvel/Disney with these projects then the other studios and that will be reflected in their box offices whoever makes them. Fingers crossed Daredevil, Elektra, Kingpin, etc come home to where they belong. The post-invasion decimated NYC would be a perfect breeding ground for the crime and street gangs that Daredevil stories thrive.

  • Mulvi

    Oh please, oh please, oh please let the rights go back to Marvel! Then maybe they’d do the character right and hire Ed Brubaker to write the script.

  • Yahzee

    Yeah, and instead of making the dark Frank Miller version of the character, Marvel would just making lighter so they can include it in The Avengers 2 or something. Yeah, I’m the guy who doesn’t like the way Marvel does things.

    • EBo Rises

      True. Marvel… I mean Disney’s approach isn’t that great for all its heroes. Sure it works for colorful, light characters, but it’s definitely not the best way.

      Avengers is basically Fantastic Four though.

    • Shaun

      There’s no reason to think Marvel would try to make DD as light as their other fare. I trust them to get their own character right more than I do FOX. I mean, did you see that Daredevil movie FOX made?

  • batman is over

    The director of Chronicle LOL Fox is sooo screwed.

    • Nullify

      Except that Chronicle was awesome.

  • ron

    I don’t care what studio does it, just don’t bleep it up. I would love a DD based on Frank Miller’s interpretation. However, a movie based on Bendis or Brubaker’s interpretations would kick a**, too. I just want a movie that is sort of in the vein of the first Blade, dark and serious, NOT CAMPY.

  • Shaun

    I don’t know anything about this Slade guy, but if his picture is any indication he needed to drop out to deal with his (apparentlty severe) constipation.

  • oprahnoodlemantra

    Marvel should just buy the rights back and get workin on a reboot.

  • Nick

    Marvel does not do grim and gritty well in their movies. Daredevil IS grim and gritty incarnate. Not only do I think Marvel would do a very poor job of adapting him to the big screen, I believe he has no place in Marvels movie universe. I very much hope Fox keeps the rights and are able to do a much better job on their second attempt at adapting his story.

  • Jm

    Speaking of dark & grim…..I wonder what kinda mess they’re gonna have w/ The Punisher character…..

  • Sugreev2001

    David Slade exiting Daredevil is great news.I agree with everyone that Marvel needs to take back the rights,because a proper DD movie would be Marvel’s true answer to Nolan’s Batman series.

  • sense 11

    Please gives those properties back to Marvel

  • m7

    It would make a lot more sense if they just let it go. Making a lower budget superhero sequel/reboot just to keep the rights hasn’t worked out for the best yet (see Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance, Punisher: War Zone) and there’s no reason to think it ever will.
    At least Marvel has proven with The Incredible Hulk that if they get a property back they can reboot it and make it successful & Good.

  • m7

    It would make a lot more financial sense to just let it go. Daredevil not a big enough brand like Spider-man/Hulk to make success through a reboot likely. We’ve already seen through Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance and Punisher: War Zone that putting out a lower budget sequel/reboot just to keep the rights doesn’t work financially.
    If marvel gets the property they could at least through a quick cameo from one of their characters, give the script alot of time to develop without rushing and itll at least have a better chance of being a hit. Sometimes you just gotta learn to throw in the towel Fox Studios. Suck up your pride, put ego aside and Let it go.

  • Ben

    Am I the only one who doesn’t want EVERY SINGLE Marvel hero to be in this “cinematic universe?” It takes SO MUCH creative freedom from the makers of the film. They have to make a Marvel movie, they can’t make it their own. Imagine if Nolan’s Batman films had to take place in the DC universe.

    • daveyboy

      Agreed…If DD’s rights to revert back to Marvel,the smartest thing they could do is make it a stand alone universe,like Nolan’s Batman…Daredevil’s thing is that he is kind of isolated,and wants to do everything himself. It needs to be a movie about the man and his relationship with Hell’s Kitchen…hell,I would be okay if they ripped off the whole tone of Batman..make a movie about a hero instead of a superhero movie…just no Affleck please.

    • T. Van

      The thing about the MCU is that it’s a *big* MCU. Via Thor, we’ve had at least 3 different galaxies established within it. We’ve also had at least two periods of time that have used its characters and, within our planet, a minimum of 3 countries with gifted heroes affecting events (per the end of Iron Man 2).

      So I wouldn’t have a problem with all the heroes being in the MCU. Some of the more edgy heroes can simply exist within their own corner of the universe… where the rules might be a little bit different than on the penthouse of Stark Tower.

  • rickytariq

    BigMarvelFan here, and I honestly don’t care which studio Daredevil goes to, just as long as it doesnt turn out to be the Amazing Spider-man. If the rights do go back to Marvel/Disney, i just hope that they can keep it seperate from the Avengers but still give it the feeling that they can all coexist in the same Marvel universe, just like the feeling you may get when you read the comics.

  • Niloc

    Sony and Fox can burn in hell for f#*king up all those Marvel superhero movies then did!

    I go to bed every night WISHING… hopeing (not really btw) that Marvel/Disney owned the rights to Spiderman, X-Men, FF ect… so they could be done right and actually turn out to be decent. Not TRASH like sony and fox puts out.

  • terry

    DD, really?
    But a fantastic Four reboot I would love to see. Lets just hope each character won’t be dispensing a bucket full of fucking catharsis.
    “Oh, my father never loved me like he loved love Josh”. The über jock brother that got the full QB scholarship to Notre Dame

  • Carlos

    thank god. now hopefully he drops out of “Shadow Of The Colossus”. only Three men deserve the honor of directing such an epic film. and he isnt even top 15.

    • Nomadfan

      Fascinated Carlos. Not disagreeing that Slade isn’t qualified based on Chronicle for Shadow of the Colossus – I’m frankly not sure that anyone is – but I’m game for your suggestion. Who is your top 3?

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  • Dash867

    So done with superhero movies after Dark Knight Rises. I wish they’d just stop.

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  • Jeff