Earlier today, the embargo from the set visits for Ant-Man lifted, revealing a ton of new information about the film set to release next month. We combed through the set visit reports, gathering the most interesting bits of information, and collected them all in a single post.
Warning: There are a ton of spoilers below.
One of the things fans have been asking since the film was officially announced was what role Janet van Dyne/Wasp would play in it. When the official cast list went out and there wasn’t any indication that Janet would be involved in the movie, many fans were displeased – curious how they’d go about the film without her inclusion. Of course, while Marvel never officially announced Janet as part of the film, rumors started to spread last year that she’d be included in a flashback scene, and that Evangeline Lilly’s Hope would later go on to take over the moniker of The Wasp.
Now, thanks to a set visit report from Collider, we know for sure that Janet will appear in the film albeit only as a cameo.
In Ant-Man, we see her briefly, although they didn’t cast a name actress for the role because you only get a close-up on her eyes. Wasp, who is Pym’s wife in the movie, appears in a flashback, and while we don’t know if she dies or gets lost in the microverse, Pym blames S.H.I.E.L.D. and resents superheroes. It’s a clever motivation for why Pym hasn’t been active as a superhero for decades, and it also explains why Wasp isn’t a main character in the movie. Furthermore, if she’s been “lost” and isn’t dead, it opens the door to bring her back later even though, like Pym, she’d be much older unless the microverse slowed down time or something.
Here’s the direct quote from Feige regarding Janet’s appearance, which also confirms that Michael Douglas will also be playing the younger version of Hank in the film:
Can you tell us who’s playing the younger version of Hank and Janet?
FEIGE: Michael Douglas is playing the younger version of Hank, and we only see Janet when she’s in the helmet. She’s in the outfit. So you just sort of see eyes.
While the rumors last year indicated that Janet was dead, Collider does bring up a good point here. As of right now, we know something has happened to her, but that doesn’t necessarily mean she’d dead. If Janet is lost in the microverse, it would allow for Marvel to bring her back in another film.
Collider was also able to get Kevin Feige to reveal even more during their Ant-Man set visit, such as when the film takes place chronologically, what genre Ant-Man will fit into, Hank’s temper, the relationship between Hank and Darren Cross, the suit, and more.
Given that Ant-Man will conclude Phase Two, it’s safe to assume that the film takes place shortly after Avengers: Age of Ultron. Still, Collider was able to get Feige to comment on the time-frame of Ant-Man and where t falls in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
When does this film take place chronologically compared to the other movies? Is this right after Avengers: Age of Ultron?
FEIGE: We don’t exactly say. There’s an indication that it’s probably just after Ultron, just after Avengers 2. They all more or less take place within the chronology of the release of the movies. The exact months and the exact weeks are sometimes determined later.
He also talked about how Ant-Man will have more of a heist film feel to it, while also noting that there won’t be as much of a comedic tone as fans would probably expect from a film directed by Peyton Reed that also happens to star Paul Rudd.
Cap 2 obviously has a spy thriller type feel, Thor was a little Shakespearean and Guardians is a new space opera of sorts – Going through this process so far with Peyton Reed and Paul Rudd, do we have a strong comedic tone with this?
FEIGE: Well, you’ve heard us say before, the genre that this is being incorporated with is a heist. [laughs] I was just gonna say, you saw Corey [Stoll’s] line. I heard you guys were here, I was like, “that’s the first line that…” [laughs] So, the fun – and when you guys walk around and see some things today – the fun of playing into the tropes of a heist film is cool.
In the same way that playing into ‘70s thrillers was fun in The Winter Soldier. So that very much is sort of the backbone of what’s making this tonally unique. And again, I wouldn’t say it’s more comedy than our other films. You know, the first picture we released of Paul, and I think some of what you’ll see today from Paul, is a much more serious version. That’s why he was interested in doing the movie. That’s why we were interested in showcasing him in a different way. And that’s why Peyton is interested in this movie because he’s always wanted to do a big superhero movie, and came close a few times.
So it’s not like, “oh, it’s the comedy guys. Let’s bring ‘em in.” But certainly there will be humorous elements as there are in all of our films.
For those that were able to attend SDCC last year, Marvel unveiled the first footage from Ant-Man. While the footage itself was never public, many blogs recapped what it shown, including the conversation between Hank Pym and Scott Lang. In that conversation, Pym calls superheros a “goddamn joke”, giving us our first look at his feeling towards superheroes. While speaking to Feige, Collider was able to get him to give us a better idea of why Pym feels that way towards superheroes and how it ties into his past.
It’s interesting because one of the things that really stood out in the Comic-Con footage was in Douglas’ dialogue. He seems to have a real disdain for the idea of superheroes in general…
…which I assume is earned from what we see of him in the past.
FEIGE: Yes. Yeah, he does not have a great experience with the people that he thinks are sort of running things today. And Howard [Stark] in particular, he had a not great encounter with in the past and that’s why he hung it up. That’s why he put it in a secured vault for decades and decades. And it’s not until this movie that he has a reason to take it out again. And he needs to use it, not because he wants there to be another superhero named Ant-Man, but because he needs to pull off the heist. He needs to stop his villainous ex protégé from perpetuating this technology in nefarious ways.
At this point, we’ve seen plenty of TV spots from the film, and we know that Lang ends up suiting up with Pym’s old Ant-Man suit, but will there be a second suit in the film? From the looks of it, nope.
Will we get to see the older suit in the film, from more the original comics?
FEIGE: This is the older suit. He’s using the older suit.
Oh, he’s using the older suit?
FEIGE: This is the older suit.
Of course, I’d expect Lang’s suit to change for his appearance in next year’s Captain America: Civil War.
Given that we’ve yet to see Ant-Man within the MCU, and unlike Doctor Strange, his name hasn’t been used within in another Marvel film yet, one can’t help but to wonder if the world knows about Ant-Man going into this film. According to Feige, it looks as though the world isn’t too aware of who Ant-Man is just yet.
Within the MCU, how much is the world aware of Ant-Man? Do they know about Hank Pym and what he was doing back in the day?
FEIGE: No. I think the notion is, sort of during the Cold War and just in the final days of the Cold War he was… Well from the ‘60s to the end of the Cold War he was operating as a secret agent for S.H.I.E.L.D.
FEIGE: So the world does not know much about him yet.
Most Marvel fans are familiar with Hank Pym’s treatment of his wife in the comics and how he later becomes a villain, which had led fans to wonder if they’ll show that side of the character in the films. According to Feige, we won’t see the same Pym from the comics, but we’ll see hints of his temper throughout the film.
Speaking of Hank Pym, his most famous story in the comics is he beats his wife, he has multiple personality disorder and he kind of goes crazy. He becomes a villain. Obviously that’s not gonna be where you go with the movie but is there that darkness in Hank in any way?
FEIGE: Sure. Sure. I mean in the same ways that there are hints that Tony drinks too much, without doing the full-on “demon in a bottle” storyline. We hinted at a temper in a way that people who know the stories might go, “oh, perhaps that’s a bit of his character,” but not in a way that would ever indicate that, you know. He has lost his wife in this and his wife, in many ways, caused him to separate from S.H.I.E.L.D. and cause him to become a bit of a recluse now.
But we do see a bit of that. We see a bit of that temper, we hear a bit about it, and there’s a great line when he’s having a confrontation with Corey Stoll, who used to be his protégé, who he took under his wing and became almost like a son to him in certain ways. And Corey Stoll, in a very cool, threatening way that leads into the finale says, you know, “why…?” He feels abandoned by him. “Why did you abandon me?” Essentially.
And [Pym] goes, “I took you in because I saw so much of myself in you.” And then [Stoll] goes, “well, why did you leave me then?” And he goes, “I think I saw too much.” And I love that line because people like you guys who know what he’s done and what dark past he’s had. Again, he is not a wife-beater in this movie and I doubt [laughs] will ever be, for God sakes.
Talking even more about Wasp, Feige explains that Pym is hesitant to let Hope follow in her mother’s footsteps is because of what happened to her – again, doing his best to avoid spilling what it is that happens to Janet in the film. But the most interesting bit has to be the last line, where he reveals that near the end of the film, there’s an indication that Hope could very well get her own suit. (Worth noting? Jo-Blo has indicated we will see Hope become the Wasp down the line.)
Wasp as a superhero in this movie. How much does that factor in it?
FEIGE: FEIGE: It factors in, in a number of spoiler-ish ways, but we will see Janet Van Dyne in action in this film. And part of sort of what happened to her. And then we will understand why that is the reason that he doesn’t want his daughter to follow in those footsteps. One of the reasons why he’s always so upset about superheroes in general, dismissive of them in general and also a reason why he doesn’t want her to put on the suit.
Because another very logical question in the movie is, why are you hiring this ex-con to put on your suit and do this? The answer is, because he has abilities in cracking security networks and in pulling off heists that nobody else has. Which is really why he needs to do it. But Hope is infinitely more capable of actually being a superhero in the beginning of this film, and we learn sort of that that’s ultimately when Hank reveals for the first time for the audience, and even the first time to Hope, what actually happened in the past and why he’s so nervous about putting on that suit. But there are things that we see towards the end of the film that indicate she could, she could get one of her own.
As if all of those little bits of information weren’t interesting enough, MTV revealed a few facts about the visual effects of the film, revealing the first scene of the movie!
The very first scene of the movie features a young ’80s era Hank Pym (Michael Douglas) speaking to Howard Stark (played by John Slattery, Not Dominic Cooper) and Peggy Carter (Hayley Atwell) at S.H.I.E.L.D headquarters. Reed told us that the aging affects during that scene — particularly the ones used to make Michael Douglas seem younger — were created by Lola VFX, who also created Skinny Steve Rogers for “Captain America: The First Avenger.” If you were put off by Peggy’s old lady makeup in “Winter Soldier,” then don’t worry — this time around, it looks perfect.
They also teased a fight in the film that should please plenty of comic book fans:
ILM worked on what will definitely be everyone’s favorite scene of the movie, in which Ant-Man uses his ant-proportional strength and his shrinking abilities to fight somebody who’ll be very familiar to Marvel fans. Guys. GUYS. I’m not going to spoil who it is, but you’re going to totally lose it when you see this for yourself. Trust me.
As of right now, there isn’t a release date set for a possible sequel, but should that change, director Peyton Reed hopes to be back for it. Speaking to Screen-Rant, he had this to say:
“I sort of feel real ownership over these characters. Paul and I worked very closely in terms of what that character was and wasn’t. Rudd can do anything, by the way. You mostly know him from comedies. He’s also done amazing dramas and stage work. I think he can just do anything. I was sort of blown away not only by his work ethic, but he’s a co-screenwriter with McKay on the movie. And so he wasn’t just concerned with, “I gotta have more lines in this scene!” He really had the big picture of this thing and it was important to him to create this character that fits into the larger MCU, but it’s very specifically different than the other characters in MCU.
So, yes. If we’re fortunate enough to do sequel, I would love to come back.”
Ant-Man hits movie theaters on July 17th, 2015. You can currently purchase tickets through Fandango, where you’ll be entered for a chance to win an original prop from Guardians of the Galaxy, or MovieTickets.com, where you’ll be entered for a chance to win a gift-card.
As always, for all things Ant-Man related, be sure to follow along by heading over here.