Now that it’s been a few months since Ant-Man has OFFICIALLY been announced and given the first slot of Phase 3, I thought it was a good time to briefly touch on the history of this project, as well as the confirmed details we’ve been told thus far. Ant-Man is currently in pre-production and plans are to start shooting January, I fully expect Marvel to give us at least one big casting announcement before the end of the year to keep the hype train moving along until Captain America — The Winter Soldier. I’ll also touch on a few loose theories I have based on the information given and my knowledge of the character(characters).
Ant-Man The Movie has been in development for close to a decade. The first draft of the script, written by Edgar Wright and Joe Cornish, was actually offered to Artisan Pictures before the first Iron Man came out and kick started the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It obviously never came into fruition and Wright went onto do films such as Hot Fuzz and Scott Pilgrim, while Cornish wrote and directed Attack the Block. It’s reported that during the start of Phase 1 development, Wright agreed to continue working on the script after meeting with Kevin Feige and submitted a second draft 4 years later sometime in 2012. At Comic-Con that year, a test reel was shown displaying Wright’s vision for Ant-Man and a final script was turned in shortly after in 2013 after Wright wrapped up The Worlds End. Pre-Production began last month and that leads us up to now.
What we know
It will be a “heist” film. It’s been repeated by Wright, Cornish and Feige quite a few times with no other details. This doesn’t give us much to work on until you take into account the other most repeated detail about the film; it will involve at least 2 Ant-Man’s. Hank Pym and Scott Lang are confirmed (more or less) to be in the film and there have been rumors of Eric O’Grady possibly making an appearance, although this was neither confirmed nor denied by Joe Cornish when asked. Most of this was confirmed before Wright and Cornish turned in their second draft, so some of this could have be a bit different to fit into the current MCU, but I’m assuming not much has changed.
The other often repeated detail was that the film could essentially operate as a Stand-Alone film yet still exist within the current Marvel Cinematic Universe. Taking into account that the film’s first draft was written before the MCU started, this makes sense. It also sheds some light onto why Marvel was so patient with the development of the film seeing as they knew they could fit it in wherever they needed.
Another bit of information that ruled out a few possibilities in this film was the announcement that even though the key villain for Avengers 2 is Ultron, Ant-Man will not be involved and Ultron will most likely be created by Tony Stark.
Connecting the dots
The fact that it’s a heist film, and that it will involve 2 Ant-Man’s leads most of us to believe that we will at least see Scott Lang’s origin story. Another thing to note is that Wright has been reported saying that not only would we see Hank Pym in the 60's/70's, but that Pym and Lang would team up. Again, this was reported before 2012 and is from what I’m assuming was the first draft; things might have changed.
Let’s talk Scott Lang. In the comics, Scott Lang becomes Ant-Man after his Daughter becomes ill and he breaks into the home of Hank Pym stealing his suit and shrinking canisters. Disguised as Ant-Man, and using Pym’s technology he breaks into a facility where a Doctor works who can save his daughter. In a weird turn of events, the Doctor is actually being held prisoner and Scott Lang saves her and in turn she saves his daughter. Hank Pym is impressed with what Scott Lang does and allows him to continue being Ant-Man.
This would work pretty well for the film and I think this is more or less the route they are going to go. I’m thinking the only really big deviation from this story-line will be that Hank Pym will actually end up helping Scott Lang as reported and I believe it will be more than just a Doctor they are trying to get to. This story involves both of the 2 main details we’ve been given so until I hear something else about the movie, this is what I’m guessing is going to happen to some extent.
Paul Rudd is reportedly up for the roll of Hank Pym. The “sources” simply cite that he’s up for a roll and most outlets assume its for Hank Pym, that coupled with the casting call sheet leaked recently looking for both a young girl and a 20-30 year old male leads most everyone to believe that Rudd is up for Pym and they are currently casting Lang and his daughter. Given the age of Rudd, it’s pretty safe to assume he’s being targeted for Hank Pym.
Will the movie take place partly in the past as initially reported? Casting a 40 something as Pym would only really make sense in my mind if they were planning to do scenes in the past and present seeing as Paul Rudd can still pull of a late 20's with a little movie magic and a 50 year old with some makeup. If thats the case then does that mean Paul Rudd/Hank Pym is only going to be in this specific film, and any Ant-Man we get in future movies (Avengers 3) will be Scott Lang? It doesn’t rule out both being involved in future movies with Lang being more of The Avenger and Pym being more of a S.H.I.E.L.D. scientist. Either way, it will be interesting to see how this is done.
The other rumor circulating along with the Paul Rudd rumor, was that Rashida Jones was up for the part of Janet van Dyne aka The Wasp. With the possibilities of part of the movie taking place in the past with a younger Hank Pym, does that mean Janet will simply be a powerless girlfriend or wife of Pym? The concept of Ant-Man is already pretty strange to begin with, I can’t imagine they will toss in a woman who also can turn tiny but grows wings. With that in mind as well, and assuming that a bulk of her role takes place in the past, does that mean we wont get The Wasp in Avengers 3?