The trade magazine Variety broke the story, letting the world know: "Laurence Fishburne is waxing his board for sequel 'Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer.' Actor will voice the role of the Silver Surfer in the summer tentpole, which 20th Century Fox bows June 15. Internet buzz had suggested that Fishburne was up to voice the role of the evil Galactus, but the studio hasn't decided whether Galactus will even speak. Silver Surfer, who rides his surfboard through space, is the herald for the planet-destroying Galactus."
The story was followed up by Fox giving an official comment to just one web site, Dark Horizons. The studio's comment was simple: "Laurence Fishburne is officially the voice of the Silver Surfer and not the voice of Galactus, as some other fan sites have stated. There was never a Seattle test screening, period. Finally, moviegoers will have to wait to see Galactus in the movie, but fans definitely won't be disappointed."
The first casualty here is actor Doug Jones, whose physical form hung from special effects rigging to bring the Surfer to life. After getting pushed aside as Abe Sapien in the first "Hellboy" movie so David Hyde Pierce could voice the character, Jones is again getting second billing. He'll get a measure of redemption as he voices Abe Sapien in "Hellboy 2: The Golden Army."
However, the questions are now aplenty. If you have an actor with skills and a voice on the caliber of Laurence Fishburne, who exactly would you get to be his "master?" James Earl Jones? Don LaFontaine? It almost paints casting executives into a corner. Who would you believe could order Fishburne around?
As well, the studio's comment said nothing about the actual meat of the rumor, bandied about by Ain't It Cool News. "Wanted to let you know what Galactus is going to look like/be represented as in the 'FF2' sequel: A storm cloud. Yep. That's it. That's the solution from the creatives." Could that be true? MySpace messages to director Tim Story went unread at press time, and no further clarification has been given.
CBR News will continue to track this vital story as it develops.