Josh Trank—director of the critically panned Fantastic Four reboot—had to step away from social media after repeated confrontations with internet trolls.
The Fantastic Four reboot by Josh Trank was not a good film by any means, with several entertainment publications placing the title somewhere near the summit of their “Worst superhero movies of all time” lists.
But is that enough of a reason to badger the film’s director nonstop for five years? Apparently, people on the internet seem to think so, as the Fantastic Four and Capone director has received constant backlash for the superhero flick ever since its release.
The issue reached its boiling point while Trank was promoting his latest film Capone on social media, which was met with more harassment. After a heated exchange between the director and some Instagram users, Trank up and left social media entirely.
— Painkiller (@iMpainkiller13) June 28, 2020
The straw that broke the camel’s back
The Fantastic Four director couldn’t help but discuss his failed movie as he was hyping up his new crime-drama Capone. Unfortunately, the internet trolls didn’t take the day off and proceeded to repeatedly bombard Trank with more hate.
The American film director eventually responded to the negative comments with a few choice words of his own, thus continuing the vicious cycle until Trank ultimately decided to step away from it all.
His last couple of Instagram posts before exiting were, to no one’s surprise, controversial ones. One of which had Trank name-dropping legendary writer Stephen King, boasting about himself being the youngest director with a top box office movie, and asking critics to “accomplish something interesting” with their lives.
His other post was a response to user “comicspride’s” Instagram statement calling the director “egotistical and pretentious,” to which Trank responded, “Say it to my face. I’ll knock you the F*** out.”
Josh Trank’s self-exile was met with mixed reactions, with some people believing that the director was indeed an egomaniac who is unable to take the slightest criticism, and got what was coming to him.
Josh Trank is one of most unpleasant people I have ever come into contact with on this platform. An egomaniacal manchild that searches his own name constantly, he’s unable to take an ounce of criticism, no matter how light. Don’t let the door hit your ass on the way out.
— Jeffrey Zhang (@strangeharbors) June 27, 2020
Others think that the trolls are to blame for needlessly going on a cancel crusade, and justified Trank’s frustrated reaction as a natural human response.
There are literally directors out there sexually harassing women all of the time and doing a lot of really messed up things. But a bunch of teenagers want to cancel Josh Trank because he talked shit back to them. Unbelievable.
— Michael #BlackLivesMatter (@batmaniac92) June 27, 2020
Josh Trank speaks out about his social media distancing
The young director briefly reactivated his Twitter account to post an apology statement for his viral Instagram exchange. Trank showed a surprising amount of humility in the letter, as he took responsibility for his negative reactions throughout the years.
His full statement reads:
“Just back for a second to apologize for overreacting to a few accounts that trolled me on IG. Over years of being railed on these platforms for my movies and opinions, I’ve responded impulsively, more than once. That’s on me.
Online harassment can be a frustrating experience, especially in a cynical space where the majority of users are cloaked in anonymity. While you feel compelled to respond to personal comments in equal measure, the results are never on your side. Best to take it in stride, though it’s not easy.
I think I a LOT of people can relate to this.
These are dark and strange times. Hope everyone is okay. See you all at the movies again, hopefully soon.”
Despite the apology letter, Twitter users continue to debate the issue online, with neither side giving an inch anytime soon. It remains to be seen whether or not one disastrous movie is enough to sink Josh Trank’s directorial career for good.
Featured image courtesy of 20th Century Studios