Some surprising news hit today from the Marvel Cinematic Universe - regular Spider-Man director Jon Watts, fresh off of huge success with Spider-Man: No Way Home, has decided to depart the job of making Fantastic Four.
Don't go thinking this is another "creative differences" situation akin to Justin Lin and Fast X and hasn't happened mid-shoot.
Officially, at least, according to Deadline and statements from Watts and Team Marvel, it's simply because the filmmaker needs a break from the hectic schedules and huge scales of superhero movies, which he's been making for nearly a decade now thanks to his successful Spider-trilogy.
"Making three Spider-Man films was an incredible and life changing experience for me, says Watts. "I’m eternally grateful to have been a part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe for seven years. I’m hopeful we’ll work together again and I can’t wait to see the amazing vision for Fantastic Four brought to life."
And according to Marvel president Kevin Feige and co-president Louis D’Esposito: "Collaborating with Jon on the Spider-Man films has been a true pleasure. We were looking forward to continuing our work with him to bring the Fantastic Four into the MCU but understand and are supportive of his reasons for stepping away. We are optimistic that we will have the opportunity to work together again at some point down the road." It's all good, see, and Watts definitely doesn't need to worry about a rock-covered figure showing up on his doorstep for a little bit of clobberin'.
Watts has a another reason he might want to step away for now – he's attached to a film that Apple snapped up in a deal, an untitled thriller starring Brad Pitt and George Clooney about fixers who are hired for the same job.
Prepare yourselves for the onslaught of "John Krasinski to direct/star in Fantastic Four CONFIRMED" comments to wash in like cosmic radiation...