See Dev Patel As Marvel’s Reed Richards
Dev Patel is the Fantastic Four's Reed Richards in this fan art.
With Disney’s purchase of Fox in 2019, Marvel is in a position to expand its superhero movie roster even further. A Fantastic Four film is on the horizon, which means that it’s time for fans to start speculating about who could play the iconic role of Reed Richards. This week, the name on everyone’s lips is Dev Patel, thanks to Reed Richards fan art posted on Instagram by clements.ink.
In the image, we see a broody-looking Dev Patel staring at something off-screen, wearing a short beard and sporting Reed Richards’ trademark salt-and-pepper hair. You can see the silver “4” on the actor’s chest, emblazoned upon the classic blue uniform of the Fantastic Four.
Dev Patel is only the latest in a long string of suggestions for who should take up the mantle of the famously flexible superhero Mister Fantastic. According to MovieWeb, other names that have been thrown into the ring so far include Adam Driver of Star Wars fame, Penn Badgley from Netflix’s You, and Ryan Gosling from Netflix’s The Gray Man.
Aside from wanting Dev Patel for Reed Richards, fans have also suggested Elvis’ Austin Butler for the fiery Johnny Storm/Human Torch. Suggestions for Johnny’s sister Susan, a.k.a the Invisible Woman, include, but are not limited, to Amanda Seyfried, Phillipa Soo, Vanessa Kirby, and Lily James.
It is important to note, however, that all of this is just speculation. Dev Patel has not officially been cast as Reed Richards yet, and no one else has yet been publically offered the role either. The film is reportedly set to be released in 2025, and the studio has not yet released any information about a potential cast, but some say that there could be clues to be found in upcoming Marvel movies like Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania.
For a time, it was thought that William Jackson Harper, not Dev Patel, would play Reed Richards based on his having a role in Ant-Man 3, but it was later revealed that he will be playing a character named Quaz instead. It isn’t yet clear who exactly Quaz is in the grand scheme of things, as that is not a name that appears in Marvel Comics, but it is fairly certain that he’s not Reed Richards.
This would not be the first (or the second) time that the Fantastic Four has made the move from comic books to the film screen. The first Fantastic Four film was released by 20th Century Fox in 2005, and starred Ioan Gruffold as Reed Richards, Jessica Alba as Susan Storm, Chris Evans as Johnny Storm, and Michael Chiklis as Ben Grim, better known as Thing. That film was a hit at the box office and produced a sequel, Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer, in 2007.
The franchise was then rebooted in 2015 with another Fantastic Four film directed by Josh Trank. This version starred Miles Teller, Kate Mara, Michael B. Jordan, and Jamie Bell, and was the lowest-grossing Fantastic Four film to date. It received almost unanimously negative reviews from both audiences and critics, with Peter Travers of Rolling Stone calling it “the cinematic equivalent of malware.”
So, it sounds like Dev Patel will have his work cut out for him if he is really asked to take on the role of Reed Richards. But really, how hard can it be to beat out a film that was equated with a computer virus?