It's only been four months since FOX's The Fantastic Four reboot hit screens and the DVD isn't due for release for almost two weeks, but the studio has already decided to pull the sequel from their 2017 slate.
Fantastic Four, with its new, younger, cast and inter-dimensional twist on the comic origin story was meant to revitalize the franchise, but it missed the mark with audiences entirely. Critical and fan reception was almost unanimously negative, with criticism ranging from problems around writing and acting to issues with pacing and the treatment of the villain/final battle. Rotten Tomatoes gave it a dismal 10% (3.4/10), and the RT 'Critics Consensus' reads like a what-not-to-do for comic book adaptations.
Dull and downbeat, this Fantastic Four proves a woefully misguided attempt to translate a classic comic series without the humor, joy, or colorful thrills that made it great.
Despite the fact that the film failed to impress critics or fans, there was some debate over whether or not Fox would continue to press forward with the franchise reboot. After the initial box office figures came in, the studio said that they would continue with Fantastic Four 2 as planned, and fans wondered whether a sequel would attempt to address the issues of the first, or if Fox would simply be ignoring the problems. Some even debated whether or not the studio would continue making Fantastic Four films just to keep the rights from Marvel/Disney.
Today, Fox revealed that it was officially dropping the sequel from the schedule, clearing its planned release date of June 9, 2017.
What this means isn't yet entirely clear. The sequel may simply be being taken back to the drawing board while the studio considers how to create a successful follow up to the massive flop that was Fantastic Four, or it may be cancelled for good.
There's also the question of what will be taking this summer 2017 slot for Fox studios. This could mean another X-Men movie moving up - or potentially moving back. At the moment, Deadpool will be released in February, with [X-Men: Apocalypse](tag:1194267) quickly following in May 2016, and Gambit appearing in October. It wouldn't be surprising if Fox decides to move the Gambit stand-alone starring Channing Tatum to cover the gap.
However this change impacts the Fox scheduling for the next couple years, it definitely looks like it spells doom for the Fantastic Four.