Updated 4:40pm ET: Well, that didn't take long.
Fantastic Four director Josh Trank has taken to Twitter to throw cold water on the Acting-Auditions.org casting notice. Here is his tweet:
that synopsis is definitely not the synopsis or anything close to the synopsis. i don't know who put that out. byyee.— Josh Trank (@josh_trank) January 24, 2014
Original story: After news in recent weeks that 20th Century Fox’s reboot of the The Fantastic Four film is picking up steam to begin shooting in March, it’s no surprise that the movie producers are looking to figure out just who their four heroes will be. But what appears to be a new casting call announcement for the planned 2015 release seems to corroborate several casting rumors and reports and may offer some new insight into the changes Fox has in store for this superhero family/team.
According to a post on the casting website Acting-Auditions.org (the same site that was out in front of Fox’s Gotham casting a young Bruce Wayne before Warner Bros. announced it), the new Fantastic Four film begins casting this week for three of the four heroes, as well as “co-starring, and supporting roles.” The announcement notes that Fruitvale Station star Michael B. Jordan is already cast as Johnny Storm (aka the Human Torch), seemingly confirming the long-rumored news. The website goes further stating that name actors such as Miles Teller, Kit Harington, Richard Madden, Kate Mara and Saoirse Ronan are scheduled to screen test to play the other major protagonist roles, also backing up recent reports .
The casting notice goes further in terms of breaking news by revealing what looks to be a synopsis for the film, which seemingly centers around Reed Richards and Ben Grimm, at least initially.
“The Fantastic Four will tell the tale of two very young friends, Reed Richards and Ben Grimm,” states the posting on Acting-Audtions.org. “After an event transforms the boys, they will find themselves empowered with bizarre new abilities. Reed becomes a scientific genius who can stretch, twist and re-shape his body to inhuman proportions. Ben becomes a monstrous, craggy humanoid with orange, rock-like skin and super strength. However, the two end up being owned by the government and used as weapons. But after they mature, two others with powers come into the picture – Sue Storm ‘The Invisible Girl’ and Johnny Storm ‘The Human Torch.’”
There are several interesting pieces of information in this apparent synopsis that run contrary to the Fantastic Four as they’ve been depicted before. The first is the focus on Reed Richards and Ben Grimm as the primary protagonists, leaving the Storm siblings in a more secondary role. The second is the stated focus on them beginning as “two very young friends” and "boys." Later in the casting notice this appears:
“Two friends (who end up being Mr. Fantastic and The Thing), starts with them being really young (sic). An event happens at 16 that changes them, instead of being superheroes, they are basically owned by the government and used as weapons.”
The third interesting swerve in this plot summary is the implication that Reed’s superhuman abilities aren’t just his stretching abilities but his “scientific genius” as well. In previous incarnations, Reed’s intellect was something innate to him as a human before he ever came into his powers – and in some ways his accidental superpower augmentation was directly a result of his keen mind. If this The Fantastic Four synopsis is accurate and his well-known scientific genius is a result of acquired superpowers, it would significantly alter the character comic book readers know as Mr. Fantastic.
Or in other words, it'd be organic webshooters all over again... x4.
The fourth is that after Richards and Grimm become super-powered individuals they are forced into servitude and “owned” by the federal government and used as weapons. In various comics incarnations the Fantastic Four has worked with the government – such as in the think tank in which they met in Ultimate Fantastic Four – but becoming, in effect, teenage property of the U.S. government puts the franchise down a slightly different path.
Expect news about Fantastic Four to start coming fast and furious as it gets closer to principle filming.