I couldn't imagine what it felt like to watch a $150 million blockbuster with your name on it bomb, then have to figure out what to do next, so I had a nice (four-year) chat with Josh Trank. https://t.co/xrA1FqZicJ— Matt Patches (@misterpatches) May 5, 2020
Matt Patches spent 4 years on-and-off talking to director Josh Trank about his career and life after the disastrous Fantastic Four movie. Here's some highlights:
-- Trank worked with Jeremy Slater to develop the FF script. He wanted the film to be the opposite of every other franchise kick-off. Slater tried to get him to care about the fun/adventurous side of the team and its rogue gallery, but Trank didn't care and wanted all that for sequels. Slater estimated he wrote about 18 drafts, with only 2 of them getting in front of studio heads, before leaving the project. Slater says the actual film follows a lot of what the duo originally envisioned.
-- Signed NDAs have fully prevented what really happened during production from being revealed.
-- The first cut of the film completely caught Fox execs off-guard and the studio hired screenwriters to generate new script pages. Fox also hired Stephen Rivkin as the new editor, who chose completely different takes for every scene in the film (Trank called a majority of them "bad takes"). All rewrites and reshoots were inspired by Rivkin's cut, leaving Trank defeated and claiming every scene was already decided before he even got on set.
-- Trank quit the Star Wars movie he was offered before LF was given the chance to fire him.
-- After the film came out Trank struggled on a daily basis, coping with the feeling of wanting "to fucking die." He and his wife would divorce.
-- A breakthrough in therapy help lead to his new film Capone, even though getting to shooting was difficult.
-- Trank says he is in a much better place now, surrounded by people who want to - and enjoy - work with him, and will no longer direct any big-budgeted studio blockbuster again.
I highly recommend reading the whole piece. It's really long and includes a ton of stuff I left out, but it's worth it.