Moon Knight’s writer has a controversial plan to fix Reed Richards
Not even Moon Knight’s head writer knows if John Krasinski is Marvel’s pick to play Reed Richards.
Marvel’s Fantastic Four experienced a major setback last month when director Jon Watts exited the project. The Spider-Man: No Way Home filmmaker’s departure was reportedly due to his own desire to take a break from the superhero genre, and both he and Marvel were quick to insist they were parting on good terms. Nonetheless, Watts’ exit has left Marvel scrambling to find a new director for one of its biggest Phase 4 titles.
While it remains to be seen who Marvel ends up choosing as Watts’ replacement, new comments from the head writer of Moon Knight have offered some interesting insight into Fantastic Four.
Returning Producers — In an interview with Comicbook.com, Moon Knight head writer Jeremy Slater revealed that Grant Curtis and Nick Pepin, two of the Disney+ series’ producers, are helping Marvel oversee Fantastic Four. "My execs on Moon Knight are the same guys who are running Fantastic Four, so we had a lot of talks about it," Slater said. “Grant and Nick are amazing executives. They're going to find brilliant writers and brilliant directors. And they don't need my stink anywhere near that project.”
Slater’s latter comment is a reference to the fact that he is one of the credited writers on 2015’s Fantastic Four. While speaking with Comicbook.com, Slater was quick to note that most of his contributions to that film’s script were erased throughout its development and production, but he also said that he doesn’t plan on trying to work on a Fantastic Four-led project ever again.
“I just know that no one will ever accept a Jeremy Slater Fantastic Four movie for very good reason,” the Moon Knight writer said. “I think there's some things that I just probably need to steer clear from for the rest of my career." However, Slater’s willingness to let Marvel’s Fantastic Four pass him by doesn’t mean he doesn’t have thoughts about the project.
The Smartest Man Alive — In the same interview, Slater shared some brief thoughts on John Krasinski’s cameo as Reed Richards in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, saying, “I think Krasinski is a really cool choice if that's who they go with for the real version of Reed that gets introduced.” The Moon Knight writer went on to give his opinion on how the Fantastic Four leader should be portrayed in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
"I think Reed is a character that's very easy to play as a fuddy-duddy and to play as the least-cool guy in the room, and he's always slightly distant," Slater said. "The version that always struck me is, no, Reed Richards is Buzz Aldrin, man, he's Juan Ponce de León, he is an explorer, he is an adventurer." Slater added, “I'm hoping that some element of that [comic book characterization] will be preserved,” and noted that he thinks Krasinski could do a “really good job of embodying” those aspects of the character.
Slater was also quick to add in the interview that he doesn’t know what Marvel’s specific plans are for Fantastic Four, including whether the studio plans on bringing Krasinski back as Mister Fantastic. If that’s what ends up happening, it’ll be interesting to see if Marvel imagines Reed in the way Slater describes above.
In Multiverse of Madness, Reed comes across more as a concerned, condescending inventor than as an inquisitive adventurer. That doesn’t mean Fantastic Four won’t take the approach with its version of Reed that Slater has suggested, but it does add even more ambiguity to Marvel’s plan for a character that has divided comic book fans for decades.
The Inverse Analysis — It seems like every Marvel comic book reader has an opinion about Reed Richards, so when Fantastic Four is released there are probably going to be more conversations about Marvel’s take on the character than is typical for the MCU. Unfortunately, his role in Multiverse of Madness is too brief to offer up much information about what fans should expect from the new version of Mister Fantastic.
On the plus side, both Grant Curtis and Nick Pepin have extensive experience working on Marvel titles. That doesn’t mean Fantastic Four is going to be great, but it does give the project a good chance of fitting into the MCU.
Moon Knight is streaming now on Disney+.