The negative rumors have been flying for months about director Josh Trank’s erratic and unprofessional behavior on the set of the already controversial ‘Fantastic Four’ reboot, including that the cast and crew were still scrambling to film reshoots, minus Trank, in order to salvage the possibly disastrous new super hero film.  Things weren’t helped when Trank announced he was departing the ‘Star Wars’ spinoff movie that he’d spent over a year developing.  At first, the split was spun to be amicable, but rumors quickly bubbled up saying that Trank was fired and his ‘Fantastic Four’ experience was to blame.

Trank quietly took the social media beat down, but the former indie director is finally stepping up to defend his reputation.  Trank recently admitted “At first I was like, ‘I’m just not going to say anything because it will blow over,’” before admitting, “But I was shocked – it just hasn’t blown over. People get so excited to raise their pitchforks.”

Despite insiders spilling about Trank’s lack of professionalism on the set of ‘F4’, Trank claims innocence.  “If you ask anybody by name who I’ve worked with, from Simon [Kinberg] to [producer] Hutch [Parker] or my crew or anybody else, they’d be like, ‘We’ve been working really hard on this movie and we’ve had an excellent time working together.’ It’s been a challenging movie – for all of the right reasons.”

He laughs at assertions that his three dogs did $100,000 worth of damage to the house he rented while filming ‘F4,’ which allegedly Fox had to cover.  “Please – it’s crazy and it’s not true.  I have three pugs and a little Boston terrier – that’s all I’m saying. They’re fine. I’ve been living in another house for over a year now and there’s literally no problem. I love my landlord.”

He addresses the recent bizarrely defensive post attributed to him on 4Chan, denying posting it, calling it a malicious hoax at his expense.

To his credit, producer Simon Kinberg sympathizes with Trank.  Regarding the rampant online attacks, Kinberg, who also produces Fox’s ‘X-Men’ movies, said, “I’ve been around some version of this for a long time.  This, I would say, is particularly cruel. I haven’t really seen this level of vehemence against a filmmaker. And it’s surreal and unfair.”

Trank agrees, “Simon and I have become closer friends through this.”  This is despite rumors that the two were feuding.

Trank insists that his standing with Lucasfilm is friendly, even after his departure from the ‘Star Wars’ spinoff.  “I have a great relationship with everyone at Lucasfilm and with [VP of development] Kiri Hart.  And they all understood it because this whole experience for me has been very psychologically hard.”

Trank goes back to the original announcement he made about leaving the project, stating that after ‘Fantastic Four’ he simply didn’t have the wherewithal to jump into another high profile franchise film.  “I want to do something original after this because I’ve been living under public scrutiny, as you’ve seen, for the last four years of my life.  And it’s not healthy for me right now in my life. I want to do something that’s below the radar.”

Hart stood by the director stating it was “a privilege to collaborate with Josh… [Lucasfilm is] grateful for the energy and love of ‘Star Wars’ that he brought to the process.”

It’s no secret that Marvel studios is unhappy that Fox cobbled together a new Fantastic Four movie in order to keep the film rights… and to keep them from reverting to Marvel.  Though Marvel won’t admit to it, they have quietly pushed the comic book Fantastic Four and X-Men to the background, while heavily promoting the characters that inhabit the Marvel Cinematic Universe.  Could the super hero giant be behind the malicious rumors at Trank’s expense?  They couldn’t be that petty, could they?

At any rate, whose story are you buying?  Was Trank unprepared for these huge franchise films?  Or have the malicious rumors simply gotten out of control?  Do you still plan to see ‘Fantastic Four’ regardless of the gossip?

Source: The LA Times