The MCU’s New Galactus Can Finally Right The Biggest Crime Of Marvel’s 17 Year Old Disaster Movie

The MCU’s Galactus has the chance to fix a 17-year-old mistake in The Fantastic Four, making it the Devourer of Worlds’ true big-screen debut.

Silver Surfer in the 2007 Fantastic Four Movie and Galactus Eats Planets in Marvel Comics

Ralph Ineson’s Galactus can finally do the Marvel supervillain justice in the MCU’s The Fantastic Four more than seventeen years after Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer missed its chance. The Fantastic Four‘s star-studded cast continues to grow with the addition of Ralph Ineson, who’s set to play the cosmic entity Galactus, the Devourer of Worlds. While The Fantastic Four‘s plot and exact place in the MCU timeline are still under wraps, it already seems like the Fantastic Four will face Galactus in the 1960s — but whether that entails an alternate MCU timeline or not is yet to be confirmed.

There have been four attempts at bringing the Fantastic Four to the big screen throughout the years, but despite the team’s popularity and their importance to Marvel’s 90-year history, Marvel’s First Family hasn’t achieved the same level of success in live-action as other Marvel icons such as Spider-Man, the Avengers, and the X-Men. Matt Shakman aims to fix this with the Fantastic Four’s first proper MCU appearance, which will also feature the MCU debut of key characters such as HERBIE, the Silver Surfer, and Galactus.

The MCU Can Undo Fantastic Four: Rise Of The Silver Surfer’s Galactus Mistake

It Will Be Easy For The MCU’s The Fantastic Four To Top Rise Of The Silver Surfer’s Galactus Cloud

Fantastic Four Rise of the Silver Surfer concept art for Galactus

In 2007, Tim Story’s Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer built upon the moderate success of Story’s 2005 Fantastic Four with a bolder premise. Apart from Doctor Doom’s return, the Fantastic Four faced Galactus’ arrival, announced by Silver Surfer in his first and only live-action appearance so far. But as comic-accurate as this version of Silver Surfer was, the same couldn’t be said about Galactus. Instead of a humanoid cosmic entity with a human-like intellect, Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer depicted Galactus as a massive cosmic cloud.

In the comics, Galactus comes from a previous iteration of the multiverse than the rest of Marvel characters.

The Marvel Cinematic Universe has mostly been faithful to its source material, and whatever major changes the franchise has made usually add something new to the characters that needed them. Given how unpopular Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer‘s depiction of Galactus was in 2007, Marvel Studios will more than likely make sure to get the villain right this time. The MCU’s Galactus will likely stay close to his comic counterpart, receiving only a few minor updates in order to make his threat believable.

Why Galactus Was A Big Cloud In Fantastic Four 2

Marvel Movies Weren’t Ready For An Outlandish Cosmic Villain In 2007

Galactus in Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer moving through space

In 2023, Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer director Tim Story spoke with about Galactus’ infamous appearance in the 2007 movie. According to Story, he was willing to take a more faithful approach to the villain, but executives were hesitant about the introduction of a villain as extravagant as the original Marvel Comics character. Marvel movies and the superhero genre weren’t as daring at the time, so a humanoid cosmic entity with a horned helmet seemed to be too over-the-top, even for Tim Story’s lighthearted Fantastic Four. Read Tim Story’s full comments below:

“The ones in charge were afraid of what that could be because, you have to remember, even Marvel has gone through quite cleverly and successfully introduced us to superheroes being in space, and at the time that was never dealt with. So as a being from space, there were those in charge who weren’t ready for what that could be. And, so, you know, that’s not the interpretation it should have been. But coming up, there will be some good stuff.”

Apart from its appearance, Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer‘s Galactus isn’t too different from its comic-book counterpart. The villainous cloud chose Norrin Radd as his herald and sent him across the universe to find planets for consumption. This Galactus also doesn’t target the Earth out of malice, but out of hunger. Like the source material, the Silver Surfer rebels against his master and sides with the Fantastic Four. Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer was clearly on track to feature a proper Galactus, but translating the villain’s appearance to live-action was still a big challenge.

Galactus Presents A Big Problem, Literally

Galactus’ Sheer Size Makes Him A Difficult Villain To Use In Any Medium

Galactus Grabs Planets in Outer Space in Marvel Comics Art

Marvel’s live-action adaptations have made substantial advancements since 2007, to say the least. Thor used to be a difficult character to adapt before his 2011 movie, and so was Doctor Strange before his 2016 origin film. Fast-forward to 2024, and the MCU has already given Rocket Raccoon his own multi-movie arc and integrated Fox’s X-Men universe into the franchise through Deadpool & Wolverine‘s multiversal plot. But despite Marvel Studios’ extraordinary track record with challenging characters, Galactus still presents some potential obstacles.

Galactus’ humanoid appearance is easier to explain than his size. The source material explains that every planet’s population sees the Devourer of Worlds as a direct representation of their own appearance. On the other hand, Galactus’ immense size makes it difficult for the villain to interact with regular-sized characters, and reducing his size would affect his cosmic nature. Therefore, in order to make Galactus a compelling threat, The Fantastic Four might need to follow in Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer‘s footsteps and depict Galactus as a natural disaster — but one with human-like intellect and appearance this time.

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