18 – Fant42tic

I’ve been meaning to do this one for a while, but it meant watching Fantastic Four again. I tried to put that off for as long as possible.

Here’s what I’ve got for you this week:

  • In 1986, the movie rights to the Fantastic Four were sold by Marvel Comics to Constantin Film, a German production company. Since the rights would revert back to Marvel at the end of 1992, Producers Roger Corman and Bernd Eichinger started work on a $1million-budget, 21 to 25-day shoot. The film was due to be released in 1994, but it never happened.
    • Don’t let that stop you from watching it though. Illegal copies soon started spreading, and the full film is now on Youtube. You can watch the trailer here.
    • Constantin Film has been involved with every Fantastic Four film since the 1994 version, which explains a lot.
  • In the 60s, Hanna-Barbera made a 20-episode series of The Fantastic Four. All of Hanna-Barbera’s back catalogue (including shows like Scooby-Doo, Tom and Jerry and Wacky Races) are currently owned by Time Warner, who also owns DC Comics. This makes the 60s FF cartoon one of the only Marvel TV shows not owned by Marvel and Disney.

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  • The Human Torch, aka Johnny Storm, didn’t appear in 1978’s New Fantastic Four cartoon as the character rights were tied up in a live-action TV movie project they had planned. H.E.R.B.I.E. was created to replace him
    • Johnny couldn’t star in Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends for similar reasons. He was replaced by Firestar, a female superhero with similar powers, who was created specially for the show.

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  • The Fantasticar was one of many moments scrapped from the film. Other things include:
    • A big action scene for The Thing – moments of which are shown in some trailers and TV spots.
    • Actor Tim Blake Nelson playing Harvey Elder – real name of villain Mole Man – instead of Dr. Allen
    • Doctor Doom would have been called Doctor Domashev, a programmer with the online name of “Doom”
    • At least one scene of pre-Thing Ben Grimm playing baseball.

That’s it for this week. Next month, we’re gonna play some games.

Tam

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