Of course, Doctor Doom would ultimately be played in the film by Australian actor Julian McMahon, who rose to prominence as the co-star of the drama FX. Pinch / Tuck. With the director’s chair occupied by a comedic director in Tim Story (Hairdresser, Taxi), working on a screenplay by Mark Frost and Michael France, The Fantastic Four brought a different version of the character, Victor Von Doom, whom the fictional Eastern European dictator portrays in the comics. Here, Doom was a classmate at MIT of Reed Richards (Gruffudd), who had become a wealthy industrialist who joined the quartet on the fateful journey of the Shape Shuttle in which cosmic rays endowed them with their signature powers. In a nod to Doom’s comic book armor, the journey transformed Doom into a being entirely covered in organic metal, through which he can conduct electricity. However, the elements of the film fell flat and McMahon, although he gave his best, couldn’t quite channel the sheer ambition of the comic book character; a notion that persisted in his retaliation for the rest of 2007, Fantasy 4: Rise of the Silver Surfer.
While Downey’s involvement in the Doctor Doom casting process was likely so brief and minor that the creative staff involved likely forgot that it even happened, the reveal is interesting nonetheless. This is particularly the case, since, in a changing universe, What if?– a noteworthy Uatu the Watcher style event, a storyline in which Downey sort of landed that role of Doctor Doom would have changed history in a number of ways. Besides the fact that it would have altered Downey’s career trajectory (unlikely for the better), it would have had significant ramifications for Iron Man, for which Downey’s star presence is widely recognized as one of the key success factors. Without Downey as Tony Stark / Iron Man, Marvel could have ended up with a tragic broadcast error – the future Iron man 2 villainous Sam Rockwell was in the running at one point, and even Tom Cruise was on the lookout for a previous iteration in 1998. Ironically, then that would have put Downey (Marvel’s future Iron Man) in front of Evans (Marvel’s future Captain America) what would have been a proto-Civil War fight in, the scenario would likely have resulted in the MCU not even reaching Civil war.
While Downey has avoided the failed role, the Doctor Doom character remains the center of failed and / or failed attempts at adaptation. Notorious 2015 Director Josh Trank The Fantastic Four the reboot brought a reimagined version of the villain, played by Toby Kebbell, who embraced a divergent comic concept that stands out as one of the most mocked aspects of a movie that has absorbed enormous derision. In addition, a more recent attempt to ward off a Doctor Doom film writer / director Noah Hawley’s cold intro spinoff (Legion, Fargo) did not bear fruit. However, make no mistake about it, Doom is come to the MCU, seen as another – this time joining the MCU –The Fantastic Four The iteration of the film is officially in the works at Marvel Studios, which will more than likely result in a top-tier version of the Marvel villain that fans can finally embrace.
Fortunately, Downey didn’t land the Doom (ed) part and was able to fulfill his destiny as the main star of a race that laid the foundation for the entire MCU, dominated the film industry and now the television, and, poetically enough, ended its 11-year arc epically with 2019 Avengers: Endgame, which is the highest grossing film of all time with $ 2.79 billion worldwide. And who knows? One way or another, perhaps through the interference of a certain Secret wars cosmic entity – we might end up seeing Tony Stark, Downey’s majestic martyr, sharing the screen with Doctor Doom himself in the next mega-movie the MCU is headed for.