So here's a little side-project I did for fun this week. Photoshop for image composition, using found images. As always the key is matching resolution, clarity and color tone. Not perfect but not bad either - especially since Manny Jacinto's head is from a video grab so the color profile is very different. Weirdly for image comps of people it always just feels better if the heads are a bit too large. I got very lucky with Constance Wu's pose - it really sets the composition. For the ever lovin' Thing I used Photoshop's Firefly Gen AI tool.

A quick note regarding diversity. As a person of Asian descent I can't pretend I'm not strongly onside, but there is a definitely a conversation that should be had about diversity for diversity's sake. Diversity initiatives in creative decisions should seek to rectify an existing issue of under-representation - or to make a point. Right now out of the 30-odd central characters in the MCU there are still big holes in representation. Destin Daniel Cretton - director of Shang Chi - tells a story about not having anyone to dress up as for Halloween as kid. Those holes are slowly getting filled - and they should be. But at the end of the day, it has to make sense, and I can 100% say that I would watch the hell out of this cast.

And here we go! Key thing to remember here is that they already have a director - Jon Watts, who's done all the Spiderman movies - so we know it's going to be a bright and fun tone. And with the Fantastic Four being the First Family of Marvel, family will be a big theme too.

For Reed Richards, MR. FANTASTIC himself we need first and foremost a charismatic father figure, and then secondly someone who can talk the talk in the science department, because the 'thing' about FF is that they're all about the STEM. So we go of course to Sendhil Ramamurthy - hot off his role as Devi's hot dad in Never Have I Ever. He's funny, tall and charismatic - and we already know he wears the hell out of a lab coat.

Secondly for Susan Storm the INVISIBLE WOMAN, we also need another STEM type - someone who can be emotional, switch immediately from stern to funny, and also hold her own. So my pick is Constance Wu, alumni of Fresh Off the Boat and star of Crazy Rich Asians. We could also her Susan Feng (风) but maybe we're getting a little too cute!

But it would work well for her brother the HUMAN TORCH. To bring him into the modern age I see him as a gamer, Tik Tok streamer, online personality, Johnny Feng AKA... JOHNNY STORM. For a gorgeous dumbo with killer dance moves and a penchant for setting things on fire there is no other choice but Manny Jacinto from the Good Place.

You will see here that to avoid rabid fanboys I've made Johnny the same ethnic background as his sister - more or less. (Yes I know he's Filipino!)

Finally for Ben Grimm - THE THING - the cigar chomping, bad guy clobbering dude made of orange bricks with a voice like chewing gravel... I must confess I didn't really know much about him so I Wiki'd him. First line of his background is: "Born on Yancy Street in New York City's Lower East Side, to a Jewish family" - and that's all I needed to hear. There's only one choice: Seth Rogen.

I know John Cena wants the role but honestly he'd be wasted in this. He's too good to be covered in latex. But Seth Rogen would kill it. No need to muscle up, he'd do it all in a mo-cap suit. They can drop his voice an octave like Groot or King Shark, pretend the cigar is... just a cigar... and he's good to go!

Anyway, thanks for coming to my TED Talk.