Toby Kebbell has a little piece of advice for any actor who may end up taking on the role of Doctor Doom in the future. Kebbell, for those who perhaps don't recall, played the part of the fan-favorite Marvel villain in 2015's Fantastic Four. That movie went on to become a much-maligned adaptation and is one of the more significant superhero bombs of the decade. Still, Kebbell is a damn fine actor who did the best he could, given the situation he found himself in. But he knows how the next person can avoid the same pitfalls.
I recently had the chance to speak with Toby Kebbell about Servant, the new M. Night Shyamalan series coming to Apple TV+, which he stars in. During our chat, I asked if Kebbell had any advice for the next actor who decides to take on the role of Doctor Doom, whether it be in Fantastic Four or a stand alone movie, whoever that may be. Kebbell had one small and simple, yet crucial bit of wisdom to offer. Here's what he had to say.
"Make sure Marvel are in control."
Fantastic Four was developed by 20th Century Fox long before Disney ended up purchasing the studio in the massive $71.3 billion merger, which went into effect earlier this year. At the time, Fox was looking to expand on the success of its X-Men movies by rebooting Marvel's First Family on the big screen. They put together a stacked cast that included Miles Teller as Reed Richards, Kate Mara as Sue Storm, Michael B. Jordan as Johnny Storm and Jamie Bell as Ben Grimm, aka the Thing, in addition to Toby Kebbell as their arch-nemesis Victor Von Doom.
Sadly, things didn't work out so well. Directed by Josh Trank (Chronicle), the movie was eviscerated by critics, currently boasting an abysmal 9 percent approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes. It was later revealed that there were quite a few issues behind-the-scenes, with some reports calling Trank's behavior into question. All told, the movie made just $167 million globally, working from a steep $120 million production budget. All of this to say, it's easy to see why Kebbell would suggest the property is better off in the hands of Marvel Studios and Kevin Feige.
Luckily, that's exactly the case given the merger with Fox. Marvel Studios now has the rights to the X-Men and the Fantastic Four. Kevin Feige announced plans for reboots of both properties within the Marvel Cinematic Universe over the summer. These will likely take place during Phase 5 of the MCU, which kicks off in 2022. Legion creator Noah Hawley was also in talks to make a Doctor Doom movie before the merger. While the project hasn't been officially scrapped, it's safe to assume Marvel is going to go their own way with it. Toby Kebbell has moved on and, fortunately, his career hasn't suffered at all. Servant debuts on November 28 over at Apple TV+.