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Fantastic Four’s Reed Richards might not be John Krasinski

Marvel-What-If

John Krasinski played the first version of Reed Richards/Mister Fantastic in the MCU, but Marvel might use a different actor for the Fantastic Four team from the main MCU reality. That has always been a possibility, considering that Krasinski played a variant of the character from a different reality. And his Reed also suffered a terrible fate. Now, a new report offers some new names that could take over for Reed in the Fantastic Four cast.

Mind you, some spoilers might follow below. If you think actors’ names are spoilers.

When will Marvel announce the Fantastic Four cast?

Marvel finally revealed the Fantastic Four release date at Comic-Con a few weeks ago. That’s November 8th, 2024. And what’s more exciting than that is that Fantastic Four will open the MCU Phase 6, which will end with two Avengers adventures.

But that’s all Kevin Feige gave us. Rumors at the time said Marvel had not picked the Fantastic Four cast. Other reports said Marvel might only choose the director after Labor Day.

Fantastic Four teaser from Marvel movies promo clip
Fantastic Four teaser from Marvel movies promo clip. Image source: Marvel Studios

Reports late last week claimed that Matt Shakman will helm Fantastic Four. The former WandaVision director pulled out of the next Star Trek movie, with Paramount confirming his departure. This further reinforced rumors claiming Shakman will direct the Fantastic Four.

Moreover, one insider said Feige really liked Shakman’s pitch, providing a few purported Fantastic Four plot details from it. That’s how the director clinched the deal.

The expectation is that Marvel will announce the director’s name and Fantastic Four cast members at D23 Expo next week.

Penn Badgley to play Mister Fantastic

Krasinski spoke about his Reed Richards in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness a few weeks ago for the first time. But he skirted questions about his MCU future, pretending he doesn’t know whether he will play the MCU’s main Reed Richards.

Mister Fantastic (John Krasinski) in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.
Mister Fantastic (John Krasinski) in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. Image source: Marvel Studios

Meanwhile, the Marvelvision podcast claims that You star Penn Badgley will play Mister Fantastic.

Marvelvision’s Devin Faraci had hoped for a Black actor to play Reed Richards. But it appears that Marvel will go for a “very traditional” Fantastic Four cast. That’s when Badgley’s name came up:

The guys that [Marvel Studios] been talking to about it are all white guys. That guy [Penn Badgley] from the show You, who probably has the role already, frankly, he’s a white guy. They’re going with the standard… And he’s terrific, by the way, that’s a good choice. But, they’re going very classical.

However, nothing is confirmed at this time. But considering Fantastic Four’s late 2024 release date, Marvel must announce the cast and director soon. That’s why a D23 Expo Fantastic Four reveal seems so likely.


More Marvel coverage: For more MCU news, visit our Marvel guide.

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he closely follows the events in Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises. Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.