Crowdfunding Friday: Corman’s Fantastic Four & Tezuka manga

fantastic-fourAside from all the new ideas to be found on crowdfunding websites such as Kickstarter – including a new variety of beef jerky made from posh Japanese cows – there are all sorts of opportunities to indulge our sense of nostalgia.

Through sheer coincidence, the projects that caught my eye this week all have a retro theme; there’s a documentary about a forgotten adaptation of a Marvel comic book, a timely revival of one of the most innovative computer games of the 1980s, and a special English language edition of a classic Japanese manga. Although very different, each of these crowdfunding projects is worthy of support, since they’re all niche interests that simply couldn’t find financial backing through other means.

There’s another retro-themed Kickstarter project on the horizon, too: a small developer named 5Lives Studios has teased what might be a new version of the classic 90s sandbox game, Syndicate. After the slightly disappointing first-person shooter reboot that emerged last year, it would be very exciting (at least to gamers of a certain age) to see a more faithful update of Bulldog’s original title.

The as-yet untitled Syndicate remake is expected to appear on Kickstarter in late June, so we’ll keep you posted. Until then, let’s get on with this week’s selection…

Doomed! The Untold Story Of Roger Corman’s Fantastic Four

In the early 90s, producer Roger Corman stumped up the princely sum of $1m to make a movie adaptation of Marvel’s Fantastic Four. Shot over three or four weeks, the movie starred Alex Hyde-White as Reed Richards, Rebecca Staab as Sue Storm, Michael Bailey Smith as Ben Grimm, and Carl Ciarfalio as The Thing.

Although scheduled for release in 1993, it soon emerged that co-producer Bernd Eichinger had only made the film in order to retain the Fantastic Four rights; as Stan Lee said in 2005, “The movie was never supposed to be shown to anybody.” Instead, the Corman Fantastic Four was essentially a placeholder for the $100m adaptation released in 2005; and thus, a film history legend was born.

Twenty years later, filmmaker Marty Langford aims to tell the story behind Corman’s Fantastic Four in his documentary, Doomed! With contributions from those who toiled on it – including Mark Sikes, who worked with Corman in the 90s, and many of the principal actors – Doomed will dig into the history of a film that, due to various rights issues, may never be released through legal channels.

Source: Den of Geek – Ryan Lambie

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