There’s talk that Matt Smith has been offered the role of Reed Richards, aka Mr Fantastic, in the Fantastic Four movie, as part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU).
Rumours have abounded for a few weeks now, but a recent report suggests that Matt was offered the part just before the SAG-AFTRA (that is, the Screen Actors Guild – American Federation of Television and Radio Artists union) strikes. However, it’s unknown whether Smith accepted or rejected the part before the strikes, whether negotiations were halted, or indeed whether he really was approached for the MCU.
Matt, of course, played the Eleventh Doctor in Doctor Who regularly between 2010 and 2013, before a brief cameo in 2014’s Deep Breath.
Speaking as a massive Marvel fan, and someone who adores the Eleventh Doctor era, it would amazing if this were true. I’d absolutely love for Matt to join the MCU in such a prominent and important role.
For those not in the know, the Fantastic Four comic, created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby in 1961, really kicked off the Golden Age of superhero comics, a time which ushered in an astonishing array of creativity. The FF’s success led to the creation of Spider-Man, the Hulk, Iron Man, Thor, and countless others, including two superhero teams that celebrate their 60th anniversary this year: the X-Men and the Avengers. The explosion of talent ultimately came about because audiences immediately took to “Marvel’s First Family”, i.e. Mr Fantastic, the Invisible Woman, the Human Torch, and the Thing.
Supposed insiders previously said that Adam Driver was offered the role of Reed, but turned it down for either creative or financial reasons. And I’m glad because Matt would be ideal as Mr Fantastic. Reed is a major player in Marvel, a genius who really helps shape and define the Marvel Universe, so if Smith were to play him, we’d be sure to see a lot more of him.
This isn’t the first time we’ve seen Matt in a Marvel movie: he was in Morbius, part of the Sony universe which leeches off Spider-Man content and which has delivered some stinkers and some excellent movies too (i.e. the Spider-Verse installments).
There doesn’t seem to be an end in sight for the SAG-AFTRA strikes, so who knows when we’ll hear more (or indeed when writers will be paid properly for what they do). Nonetheless, the Fantastic Four movie, directed by Matt Shakman (WandaVision), is scheduled to come out in May 2025…