There’s more than enough blame to go around for the box-office failure of Fantastic Four, with the director blaming the studio, the studio blaming the director, and everyone else blaming a steaming garbage pile of a movie. But plucky little 20th Century Fox kept hoping against hope that America’s love affair with the superhero team would eventually begin, leaving Fantastic Four 2 on its planned release calendar long after everyone else snapped back to reality like a man with comically overextended appendages popping back to normal human proportions. But every excited “Flame on!” eventually turns back to a desultory, “Flame out, I guess,” as /Film reports the studio has pulled the planned sequel from its release schedule, absolutely depressing the hell out of nobody.
After keeping the movie firmly ensconced on the release date of June 9, 2017, Fox has reluctantly accepted the fact that spending another couple hundred million dollars on something that’s already cost them roughly that amount is not a sound business strategy. This isn’t to say such a film won’t eventually get made—given that superhero reboots are America’s second most common natural resource, after varieties of Dorito, it’s almost inevitable—only that it won’t be coming any time soon.
What’s interesting, as the site notes, is the timetable: Fox only has so many years to make another film, otherwise the rights revert back to Marvel, which has contingency plans in place for such an event. That would leave only the X-Men universe outside of Marvel Studios (a universe which includes the upcoming Deadpool), now that Spider-Man is back in the MCU. Fox, presumably, doesn’t want that to happen. So we can most likely look forward to another flaming fuck-up of a Fantastic Four movie sometime in the next decade. Flame on, indeed.