Could Fantastic Four have achieved more credit with the inclusion of this missing action sequence?
Fantastic Four is likely the biggest studio bomb of 2015, receiving rough reviews from pretty much everyone, including The Fandom. But could a missing action sequence that was just revealed have made a major difference for the flopped franchise?
Remember the awesome shot of The Thing dropping out of an airplane to clobber something below that make it into the Fantastic Four trailer, but never on to the big screen? Well, brace yourselves for impact.
Entertainment Weekly has worked with a number of sources to uncover the details of a major scene that would have (and should have, in our opinions) been squeezed in between the team’s ghastly transformation on Planet Zero and the title card montage of The Human Torch, The Thing, and The Invisible Woman working as special operatives for the government– a powerful action sequence starring Ben Grimm aka The Thing.
Take a look!
A Chechen rebel camp in the wee hours of the night. There’s no explanation for where we are, but there are soldiers speaking a foreign language, and they are loading up some heavy-duty weaponry.
Crews are filling truck beds with the gear, preparing to mobilize – then a siren goes off. Everyone freezes, and one by one they turn their faces to the sky. A stealth bomber whispers by overhead, and a large object falls from it, streaking through the air at great speed.
The object – a bomb, a missile? – collides with the earth in the center of the camp, sending debris is all directions. The soldiers take cover, then tentatively emerge and walk toward the crater, where there is a giant pile of orange boulders.
Slowly, the rocks begin to move on their own, becoming arms, legs, a torso, a head …
This rock-figure lumbers out of the smoke, and the soldiers level their weapons – then open fire.
As The Thing lurches into view, bullets spark and ping off his impenetrable exterior.
Rather than some elegant, balletic action sequence, The Thing moves slowly and deliberately. He’s in no hurry. The storytelling goal was to show the futility of firepower against him as he casually demolishes the terrorists. It’s a blue-collar kind of heroism.
When it becomes clear this rock-beast cannot be stopped, the surviving Chechen rebels make a run for it – and that’s when a hail of gunfire finishes them off.
From the shadows of the surrounding forest, a team of Navy SEALS emerge with their guns drawn and smoking. The cavalry has arrived, but the enemy has already been subdued.
The film would then have shifted to a bird’s-eye view of the camp, an aerial shot showing waves of American soldiers flooding in to secure the base. Just when it appears the American soldiers may be ready to clash with the rock monster, The Thing gives them a solemn nod, and they clear a path. He lumbers past them, almost sadly, a heartsick warrior. Then he boards a large helicopter and is lifted away.
Like almost everything else in this disastrous reboot, sources from FOX’s camp and Trank’s camp are blaming each other. One side claims that Trank cut the scene of his own volition. The other side claims that Trank was not initially given the funds to film the scene, then was forced the relegate it to a second unit director who shot using shaky cam techniques that made full effect make-up nearly impossible, leading Trank to cut the scene. Others still say it was FOX’s decision from the get-go and Trank had no say. Basically… Who’s on first?
Though we don’t think the one action sequence was ever enough to save the film, it sounds like a gripping scene that would’ve helped get the audience on board a little easier.