With Disney’s acquisition of 20th Century Fox earlier this year, the studio has brought several prominent Marvel properties back into the Marvel family, and while it’s tough to say for certain what the future of the Marvel Cinematic Universe will hold, it’s a good bet that it includes the Fantastic Four. We’ve already tackled casting Marvel’s first family earlier this year, so we’ll be turning our attention to one of Marvel’s very best villains as well as the archenemy of the Fantastic Four – Doctor Doom.
Noah Hawley (Legion) had been developing a Doctor Doom standalone film for several years, which would have been a “Cold War, geopolitical movie” taking place in Doom’s country of Latveria. After 10 years of mostly isolation, Doom would have invited a female journalist to go in and share Doom’s message to the world. “Is he a good person or bad person?” Hawley told Deadline earlier this year. “We don’t know anything about him.” The project seems to be dead at this point, but Hawley did speak with Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige about the film after Disney bought Fox, who asked him if he was still working on it. “Should I still be working on it?… I assume you guys have a plan in a drawer somewhere for the Fantastic Four,” Hawley told Uproxx. Feige apparently smiled a little bit, but would neither confirm nor deny.
First appearing in The Fantastic Four #5 back in 1962, Doctor Doom, aka Victor von Doom, is one of the most brilliant characters in the Marvel Universe, as well as a skilled scientist, inventor, and sorcerer. Victor first met Reed Richards (Mr. Fantastic) while the pair attended university together, where Victor attempted to build a machine which could project someone’s astral form into other dimensions. Reed warned Victor about a flaw in his machine, but Victor dismissed him, and as a result, the machine exploded, leaving Victor horribly scarred as well as expelled for conducting unethical experiments. After returning to his homeland of Latveria and taking control, Victor pushed his mind and body to its limits to become the extremely formidable supervillain. Although Doctor Doom is primarily the archenemy of the Fantastic Four, he’s also served as a menace to other superheroes as well, such as Spider-Man, Doctor Strange, the X-Men, Captain America, the Avengers, and more.
Several actors have played Doctor Doom in feature-films over the years, including Joseph Culp in THE FANTASTIC FOUR, the infamous film produced by Roger Corman which has never been officially released, Julian McMahon in both FANTASTIC FOUR and FANTASTIC FOUR: RISE OF THE SILVER SURFER, and Toby Kebbell in FANTASTIC FOUR. Now, who should play Doctor Doom when he makes his introduction in the Marvel Cinematic Universe? As usual, I’ll toss out a few suggestions to get you started. Although Doctor Doom and Reed Richards are similar in age, given that they attended university together, I initially found myself going older when considering potential actors for Doom. Viggo Mortensen (GREEN BOOK) has the type of fearsome yet silent intellect which would be perfect for one of Marvel’s greatest villains. Dan Stevens (Legion) would also be an interesting choice for the role, and likely more age-appropriate for Marvel’s long-term plans, and he’s certainly had experience playing dark, super-powered characters. For my final suggestion, I’ll go with Alexander Skarsgård (GODZILLA VS. KONG), who came close to joining the MCU a decade ago when he tested for the role of Thor, but I always prefer when he plays the bad guy.
Remember, you’re free to suggest anyone in the comments, so let your inner casting director run wild!
Previously on Cast This, you were asked to fill the role of Jake Gittes in Netflix’s potential CHINATOWN prequel series which is being developed by David Fincher and Robert Towne. As usual, you came through with plenty of great suggestions, including Sam Rockwell (Fosse/Verdon), Walton Goggins (The Righteous Gemstones), and Jack Huston (Boardwalk Empire), whose grandfather, John, played a very memorable role in the original film.