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Given how dire things are right now at Marvel Studios, despite some recent wins, the fact that most people are reasonably excited about the upcoming Fantastic Four reboot is surprising. It largely comes down to the attractive cast the studio put together, and we’re now even hearing about talented actors, such as Rahul Kohli, who nearly landed a key role in it.

Anyone who’s been watching Mike Flanagan’s recent output of notable-to-excellent series for Netflix is well aware of how good (and flexible) of a performer Kohli is, so this is a bit of a gut punch – as much as we love Pedro Pascal and the idea of him playing Reed Richards, aka Mr. Fantastic.

During an interview with the Salaam Nerds (via Deadline), the actor confirmed that, after being fan-cast as Richards for the longest time, he was at some point among the actors actually testing for the coveted role: “Yeah, I don’t know if I’m allowed to talk about it but I didn’t get it, is the important thing… It will flare up once and again. And, I love all of them. On good days, you’re like, ‘Man, I’m wanted!’ People really want to see. You’re the guy that people will shout out for anything.” It’s hard to imagine how many hugely popular actors tested for such a crucial Marvel Cinematic Universe role, but we can safely say Kohli was a name that popped up in fan conversations time and again.

Looking at the massive cast, which so far includes Pedro Pascal, Vanessa Kirby, Joseph Quinn, Ebon Moss-Bachrach, Julia Garner, Paul Walter-Hauser, John Malkovich, Ralph Ineson, and Natasha Lyonne, it seems that Disney and Marvel are doing everything in their power to make casual moviegoers care about the reboot as much as diehard fans. In the case of Mr. Fantastic, Pascal was a sensible choice to get butts in seats after leading The Mandalorian and HBO’s The Last of Us. Still, It would’ve been fun to have some left-field choices in the main cast, and Kohli would’ve totally crushed that role after delivering some fantastically nuanced performances in shows like Midnight Mass and The Fall of the House of Usher.

With Deadpool & Wolverine set to make a much-needed splash at the summer box office this year, Marvel Studios is now focusing on getting the 2025 batch of movies (and the next set of Disney Plus shows) as right as possible. On top of The Fantastic Four, its most anticipated projects right now are the long-awaited X-Men reboot, X-Men ’97’s second season, and Daredevil: Born Again. Everything else kind of feels like it needs to regain people’s trust.

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