David Krumholtz Lost Out on ‘Fantastic Four’ After Meeting the Director and ‘Just Begging’ to Play The Thing: ‘Slim Pickings For Guys Like Me’ in the MCU

From a Christopher Nolan set to the Marvel Cinematic Universe? It’s the path “Oppenheimer” star David Krumholtz wanted to take by campaigning for the role of Ben Grimm/The Thing in the upcoming Marvel tentpole “The Fantastic Four.” The actor recently revealed to Entertainment Weekly that he met with the film’s director, Matt Shakman, to play Ben Grimm because “it’s been a big, sort of unabashedly craven goal of mine to be part of the MCU in some way.”

“I only met him on the strength of a Twitter post or an Instagram post that I then took down two hours after I posted it,” Krumholtz explained. “I was embarrassed. My post said, ‘I just want to be in the conversation.’ And it was a picture of the Thing, and Matt saw it somehow. And I had a meeting with him and we discussed it. And I’ve never been so bold in a meeting before, just begging for the role, just straight up selling the shit out of it, the idea of how committed and passionate I was for it. But obviously that didn’t happen.”

More from Variety

“The Bear” Emmy winner Ebon Moss-Bachrach ended up landing the role of Ben Grimm opposite Pedro Pascal as Reed Richards, Vanessa Kirby as Sue Storm and Joseph Quinn as Johnny Storm.

“I think Ebon Moss-Bachrach is a really great choice,” Krumholtz said. “It makes way more sense in some ways.”

Missing out on the role of Ben Grimm hasn’t stopped Krumholtz for campaigning for a spot in the MCU. He recently used social media to express interest in playing the Fantastic Four’s villain Mole Man.

“It’s not a joke at all,” Krumholtz told EW. “I mean, it’s a shoe-in for Mole Man, isn’t it? But I don’t know. I’ll do anything Marvel tells me to. I’ll probably end up playing like a superhero’s therapist. Let’s face it. There’s slim pickings for guys like me in that world, unfortunately. I’m old and I’m not in any kind of acceptable shape. So we’ll see how that works out, if it works out at all.”

Krumholtz would love for it to work out. “I grew up reading Marvel comics. It was all I read,” he said. “I wasn’t a big DC guy. I just read Marvel and it became an obsession. I even worked at a comic book store before I became an actor, and I got paid in comics. I was 11. So when Marvel started making films, it was mind-blowing. I remember thinking when I was a kid reading these comics that these would be amazing films, but they couldn’t do them. There wasn’t the technology to do them properly. And suddenly there was, and suddenly they were getting it all right. And they were true to the costumes and true to every little detail.”

Head over to Entertainment Weekly’s website to read more from Krumholtz’s interview. Marvel’s “The Fantastic Four” is set to open in theaters July 25, 2025.

Best of Variety

Sign up for Variety’s Newsletter. For the latest news, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.