In 2004, the New England Patriots won the Super Bowl, Facebook was founded, and the United States finally lifted their decades-old travel ban against Libya.

Perhaps more importantly, at Comic-Con that year, Michael Chiklis, Jessica Alba, and Ioan Gruffudd took to the stage to discuss filming their upcoming feature Fantastic Four and to present the partial cast to rabid fans who had been sifting through rumors months and months before.

Now, friends, it’s time to start that process all over again. Because 2004 is such a vague memory.

The fine folks over at Cinematical have compiled several stories of casting rumors, and they’d all be vaguely interesting if we didn’t just go on this merry-go-round ride.

At the head of the team is the possibility of Adrien Brody or Jonathan Rhys Meyers or someone else as Reed Richards, the fantastically limber member of the group.

Quick thoughts:

  • I love Adrien Brody, and as much as he would elevate the acting here, I also love seeing him in great movies, and I fear that doing a comic book movie at this level could have him stuck for the next few years. Or, worse, his persona to possible employers completely changing.
  • I cannot look at Jonathan Rhys Meyers without assuming he’s about to date rape me. This is a great thing for Tudors. Not such a great thing for Reed Richards. Unless they are headed in a challenging new direction with the character.

At the side of the team is the possibility of Alice Eve or Amber Heard or someone else as the Invisible Girl.

Quick thoughts:

  • Alice Eve seems just about as attractive and lacking in acting talent as Jessica Alba, but the word is that she will most likely end up in Avengers.
  • There’s no way Heard will get the part because Fox will never do an R-rated Fantastic Four, and Heard must (by law) appear nude in every film in which she’s cast.

On the flaming side of the team is the possibility of Kevin Pennington or someone else as Johnny Storm.

Quick thoughts:

  • I have no idea who Kevin Pennington is, and his name seems strange when tossed in ensemble-style with Adrien Brody’s. It even feels strange next to Amber Heard’s.

On the Grimm side of the team, the big orange menace will be made out of CGI, and there’s no word yet on who might play the human counterpart that appears in the first section of the film.

Of course, that means that if they need a human counterpart, they’ll be doing an origin story all over again. Because we aren’t intimately aware of it, and because audiences forgot the story they delivered all those long, 5 years ago.

Attempting to eschew pessimism, the project is bound to be some explosive, popcorn-chewing fun, but it’s difficult to get excited about something like this (or something like Spider-Man for that matter) because we just, just, just saw it.

I enjoy oatmeal, but after eating it for a week straight, if you told me you had a hot new breakfast option for me and handed me another bowl of oatmeal, I’d have the same trouble pumping my fist in the air and jumping for joy.

This project, and the whole genre of majors right now, is starting to feel a lot like oatmeal.

What do you think?


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