Another actor has just joined Paul Rudd as one of the Marvel Cinematic Universe's two (yes, TWO) incarnations of Ant-Man.
Ever since we found out that Edgar Wright's long-gestating Ant-Man flick had a firm summer 2015 release date, we've been wondering exactly where the film's focus would fall. Would it be a straightforward Hank Pym origin story? Would it be a Scott Lang tale? Would it be something else entirely? Even after Rudd was cast last month, we were still somewhat in the dark about just who he'd be playing. We only knew for sure that he was "Ant-Man." Then we got a tease from Wright that hinted that there may be a Scott Lang story on the way. Now Marvel Studios has made it official. Paul Rudd is Scott Lang, and here's who'll be playing the elder Ant-Man, Hank Pym:
Yes, Marvel Studios made the announcement today that Oscar, Emmy and Golden Globe-winning actor Michael Douglas (shown above admiring the Globe he snagged just last night for his performance as Liberace in Behind the Candelabra), will be playing Pym in Ant-Man opposite Rudd's Lang.
"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," said Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige. "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."
Douglas has a very rich history with taking on diverse roles and making them work. He won his only Academy Award for acting (though he also has one as a producer) for Wall Street, in which he played the unapologetically greedy Gordon Gekko, but he's also done acclaimed work in crazy crime dramas (Falling Down), adventure comedies (Romancing the Stone), black comedies (The War of the Roses), psychological thrillers (Basic Instinct), comedy-dramas (Wonder Boys) and, most recently, a Liberace biopic (which he nailed, by the way). He's got the chops to step into pretty much any role he wants, so for now we'll call the Pym role safe in his hands.
Now we're left to consider what exactly these two size-shifting adventurers will be up to together. In Marvel Comics continuity, Lang's introduction into the world of Ant-Man came when he stole Pym's Ant-Man suit so he could save his dying daughter. That certainly sounds like a reasonable starting point, but as Wright pointed out on Twitter shortly after the news broke, he already shared his concept for a Pym/Lang team-up movie years ago, in a 2006 interview with Superhero Hype.
"Well, the thing is that what we want to do, the idea that we have for the adaptation is to actually involve both. Is to have a film that basically is about Henry Pym and Scott Lang, so you actually do a prologue where you see Pym as Ant-Man in action in the 60's, in sort of 'Tales to Astonish' mode basically, and then the contemporary, sort of flash-forward, is Scott Lang's story, and how he comes to acquire the suit, how he crosses paths with Henry Pym, and then, in an interesting sort of Machiavellian way, teams up with him," Wright said back then. "So it's like an interesting thing, like the 'Marvel Premiere' one that I read which is Scott Lang's origin, it's very brief like a lot of those origin comics are, and in a way, the details that are skipped through in the panels and the kind of thing we'd spend half an hour on."
So, is that the movie we'll see next summer? Wright certainly hinted on Twitter that we should pay attention to this old interview, and we definitely are. We'll also be hoping to learn more about both of these Ant-Men at San Diego Comic-Con this year.
In the meantime, what do you think of this casting choice? Is Marvel still on the money with Ant-Man?