After the Disney/Fox merger, many fans are desperate to see what Disney and Marvel Studios have in store for characters like the X-Men post-Avengers: Endgame, but the acquisition comes with plenty more characters, many of which aren’t mutants. Most importantly, Marvel’s Kevin Feige confirmed that he’s excited to see the Fantastic Four on a “platform and level they deserve.” However, the earliest the team could arrive is 2022 since the only confirmed date in that year is for Black Panther II. There’s been a few theories as to how the Fantastic Four could make their entrance into the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but we’ve come up with one that ties it into the timeline fans already know alongside a few cues from previous movies.
First, lets look at how their origin story could be translated from page to screen to fit in the grand tapestry of the MCU. Our suggestion would see the team’s introduction span across both Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame. In the comics, Reed Richards decided to test his experimental rocket in an unathorized flight, with his girlfriend Sue Storm and her brother Johnny coming along for the ride, while Ben Grimm piloted the craft.
After their exposure to cosmic radiation, the team members all discover their incredible powers. So in the MCU timeline, our idea sees the Fantastic Four test their rocket around the same time that Thanos is attacking Wakanda in Avengers: Infinity War. While the military and organizations like NASA are distracted by the event, the Fantastic Four seize the chance to test the rocket, perhaps using Chitauri technology left behind from the original New York invasion in The Avengers.
The Fantastic Four heroes were snapped out of existence with like half of the universe while experimenting in space, and when they blip back they get exposed to the solar flare that gives them their powers. Although Banner’s snap supposedly brings everyone back safe, the team members are left stranded in space aboard their rocket as a wave of cosmic energy (perhaps an excess from Tony’s second snap) blasts all four of them,giving them their iconic set of powers.
Then there’s the Far From Home of it all. We all know that Tony sold Avengers Tower after part of Spider-Man: Homecoming saw Happy moving everything out of the building. The skyscraper is clearly rebuilt in a big way when it appears in the final few moments of Far From Home, not far from a sign that has “We are so excited to show you what comes next!” written on it. The words are above the numbers 1, 2 and 3 – which could be taken as a tongue-in-cheek joke about Marvel’s Phase 4 after Avengers: Endgame, or it could be a sneaky reference about the Fantastic Four. We’re hoping it’s the latter.
But to spitball about who the team should face in their film, there’s only one answer: Doctor Doom. In the five years since Thanos wiped out half the universe, Victor Von Doom should have risen to power in Latveria rebuilding the country after the tragedy, putting him as its ruler. That way, the team need to deal with the political ramifications of fighting a dictator as well as a supervillain. There’s plenty of political sub-text available there if Disney and Marvel really want to give Fantastic Four some extra depth.
Throw in Doom’s disfigurement after being caught in an accident during the original snap, linking his origin story with the team’s and there’s the perfect set-up for his dislike of Marvel’s First Family. Just to throw it back even further, it’d be easy for Kevin Feige to explain that Latveria isn’t far from Sokovia — maybe the Doombots originated from discarded Ultron drones. We’ve thought of it all. Our top pick for Doom would be Cillian Murphy, as his role as Tommy Shelby in Peaky Blinders proves he can be a downright villain while still being completely compelling.
But finally, it’s time to pick our Fantastic Four. Our initial picks won’t surprise anyone, as we’re looking at John Krasinski as Mr. Fantastic and Emily Blunt for the Invisible Woman. Fans already know the real-life couple have chemistry as well as the acting prowess to bring this larger than life team to the MCU. For the Human Torch, we need someone with a little spark, which could easily be Zac Efron, as his cheeky performance in That Awkward Moment is spot on for Johnny. Finally, for Ben Grimm and The Thing, how about Mark Strong? He’s shown he can balance action and comedy in Kingsman, but he can also be stern and formidable.
Obviously all of this is just a general idea of where the Fantastic Four could go. Knowing Kevin Feige and Marvel Studios, there’s already an intricately-weaved plan of stories that fit into the Marvel Cinematic Universe better than we could ever pitch.