Because, size matters.
Ant-Man may be a miniature-sized superhero, but its movie is big on fun. After all, American essayist and poet Ralph Waldo Emerson once wrote, “A great man is always willing to be little.”
Paul Rudd, who was recently honoured with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, will be making his first appearance as the titular role of Marvel‘s latest superhero film, “Ant-Man”. Directed by Peyton Reed and produced by Kevin Feige, the movie will conclude Phase 2 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU).
Though Rudd is playing the lead role, he was not the original Ant-Man. In the comic books, the first Ant-Man is Dr. Hank Pym, a role portrayed by Michael Douglas in the movie. Hank invented the “Ant-Man” suit and made use of its superhero powers in the Cold War era of World War II. Rudd is instead playing Scott Lang, an ex-con who broke into Hank’s home to steal the suit. He became the 2nd generation of Ant-Man after Hank offered to let him keep the suit, provided that he only use them to uphold the law.
The official synopsis of Marvel’s “Ant-Man” is as follows:
The next evolution of the Marvel Cinematic Universe brings a founding member of The Avengers to the big screen for the first time with Marvel Studios’ “Ant-Man.” Armed with the astonishing ability to shrink in scale but increase in strength, master thief Scott Lang must embrace his inner-hero and help his mentor, Dr. Hank Pym, protect the secret behind his spectacular Ant-Man suit from a new generation of towering threats. Against seemingly insurmountable obstacles, Pym and Lang must plan and pull off a heist that will save the world.
Both “Ant-Man” and “Guardians of the Galaxy” were once considered as Marvel’s riskiest projects, but the latter proved the detractors wrong by turning it into one of the most successful Marvel films.
“Ant-Man” too, will also prove to nay-sayers that it will be one of the best Marvel films. In conjunction with its release, here are some of the things you might not know about the movie:
1. Edgar Wright pitched an “Ant-Man” movie 12 years ago
The film has been in development for more than 2 decades as “Ant-Man” creator Stan Lee first pitched the idea to New Line Entertainment in the late 1980s. At that time, the studio found the premise too similar to 1989’s “Honey, I Shrunk the Kids”.
The project finally got traction when director Edgar Wright (of “Hot Fuzz” and “Scott Pilgrim vs the World” fame), a big fan of “Ant-Man”, came on board. He proposed the film to Marvel in 2003 and wrote a treatment with his writing partner Joe Cornish. In 2006, he was officially hired by the newly-formed Marvel Studios to bring Ant-Man to the big screen. He had been developing the film since then. He shot a test reel, hired the cast, and was close to begin filming it.
However, the project fell into development hell for years. Wright and Cornish then left the project in 2014 over creative differences.
2. Director Peyton Reed was once considered to helm 2005’s “The Fantastic Four” and 2014’s” Guardians of the Galaxy”
After Wright left the project, Peyton Reed came onboard to replace him as the director. Before that, Reed was briefly attached to direct Fox’s first “Fantastic Four” film in 2005. However, Tim Story went on to helm that film instead.
He was later under consideration to helm Marvel’s “Guardians of the Galaxy”, but James Gunn was chosen instead.
3. “Ant-Man” was filmed in San Francisco under the fake movie name, “Bigfoot”
Like many other big budget movies, the filming of Marvel’s “Ant-Man” attracts a lot of unwanted attention. Some set photos and videos were also being shared on the Internet.
To keep things a secret, they shot “Ant-Man” in San Francisco under the clever fake movie name, “Bigfoot”.
4. It’ll feature 2 post-credits scenes
Fortunately, Marvel has decided to include not one, but two post-credits scenes in “Ant-Man”. People who’ve already seen the movie (including us) have disclosed that the movie will have a mid-credits scene, as well as an end credits tag. To avoid spoilers, none of them revealed the content for the scenes, but they were both described as “good” and “must-see”.
5. Joseph Gordon-Levitt was once rumoured to be under consideration for the role of Scott Lang.
At one point, it was rumoured that Marvel Studios was interested in having Joseph Gordon-Levitt to join the Marvel Cinematic Universe. In January 2013, he was said to be under consideration for the role of Peter Quill/Star-Lord in “Guardians of the Galaxy”. The “Inception” actor was later reported to be looking for the lead role in “Doctor Strange”. A few months later, a rumour surfaced online, claiming that he could be up for the titular role of “Ant-Man”.
However, he has denied all the rumours, stating that any stories regarding him passing any kind of screen test are untrue.
I talk a lot about my future projects, so if you haven’t heard me talk about it, it means it’s nothing but a rumour. People like to write about (rumours).
Before Paul Rudd was eventually cast for the role of Scott Lang, Adrien Brody expressed interest in playing Ant-Man.
6. Patrick Wilson was originally cast to play Paxton
Patrick Wilson was originally cast to play Paxton, Scott Lang’s best friend and the new husband of Lang’s ex-wife, Maggie (played by Judy Greer).
However, Wilson dropped out of the film alongside Matt Gerald and Kevin Weisman. It was reported that their characters were apparently written out of the screenplay after Wright left the project. However, Paul Rudd and Adam Mckay decided to give Paxton a much larger role in their rewrite. “Boardwalk Empire” actor Bobby Cannavale was then cast to replace Wilson.
It was revealed that Cannavale was allowed to improvise some of his lines with Rudd and Greer in the movie. He also added, “The actual work in the scenes were really fun. It felt like we were on an indie film.”
7. Bryce Dallas Howard was considered for the role of Hope van Dyne
Bryce Dallas Howard rose to international fame through for her role as Gwen Stacy in 2007’s “Spider-Man 3″. Her most recent film credits include 2011’s “The Help” and 2015’s “Jurassic World“. Before she was cast for the role of Claire in the “Jurassic Park” film series, she was rumoured to be in the contention with Rashida Jones to play the female lead in “Ant-Man”. Jessica Chastain was also offered to play the role, but she turned it down.
Prior to the casting rumours, Mary Elizabeth Winstead has expressed interest in playing The Wasp aka Janet van Dyne, the wife of Dr. Hank Pym. However, the character has been written out of the screenplay and “Hobbit” star Evangeline Lily was eventually cast to play Janet’s daughter, Hope van Dyne.
9. Sean Bean, Pierce Brosnan, and Gary Oldman were considered for the role of Hank Pym
Before Michael Douglas was cast as Dr. Hank Pym, a number of veteran actors were all considered for the role.
Sean Bean, who is best known for his role in “Game of Thrones”, was among the early choices to play Hank. “James Bond” actor Pierce Brosnan and Gary Oldman were also almost cast for the role. However, the studio decided to cast Michael Douglas instead. In an official statement, Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige said:
With Hank Pym’s rich history in the Marvel Universe, we knew we needed an actor capable of bringing the weight and stature to the role that the character deserves. We felt incredibly relieved when Michael Douglas agreed to step into the part with the charm and fortitude he brings to every character he inhabits, and couldn’t be more excited to see what he will do to bring Hank Pym to life.
10. A number of Marvel characters will make cameo appearances, including Howard Stark and Peggy Carter
They are confirmed to appear in flashbacks, which is one way Ant-Man will tie in with the larger MCU. Various other Marvel characters will also appear in the film, but you got to watch it to find out who we’re referring to.
Paul Rudd stated in an interview with New York Times columnist Tom Riddle that he purchased a massive ant farm and watched how the ants worked together. He was so inspired by them that he decided to keep the farm after the filming was completed.
Slated for release on 16th July 2015, Ant-Man also stars Corey Stoll, Michael Pena, Abby Ryder Fortson, Judy Greer, David Dastmalchian, Wood Harris, Gregg Turkington, T.I. and Martin Donovan.