Sandwiched amid the expected announcements today that “Iron Man 3” and “Thor: The Dark World” will be in 3D comes official confirmation that Marvel/Disney are making it official for Edgar Wright’s long-gestating “Ant-Man” movie… and that it’s now dated to come out in November of 2015 – after “Avengers 2;” meaning that they’re already setting “Phase III” in motion before “Phase II” even officially gets underway.
What’s fun about this is that by announcing “You’ll see Ant-Man in 2015,” they’re making it feel VERY likely that we’ll in fact see him before 2015, too…
Here’s the thing: Wright and Marvel had a “test reel” of Ant-Man FX footage at Comic-Con which apparently felt an awful lot like something that would be the post-credits teaser of another Marvel movie – and while they haven’t cast the “official” Ant-Man yet, in the footage he was wearing a full-head face-obscuring helmet so it’s probably still extremely useable and I’d be very surprised for a penny-pinching studio like Marvel to not repurpose it at some point.
Also, they’ve been shooting (and then deleting) minor references to the character (who, for the record, can communicate with ants and also shrink down to tiny-size while retaining his full strength) for awhile now – there’s a clear references to “the guy who gets small” in the “Avengers” deleted-scenes, and the scientist Dr. Selvig emails in “Thor” was supposed to be revealed as (in an email handle) Dr. Hank Pym, aka Ant-Man.
That’s another reason he could be turning up before his own movie… or even before he’s been (fully) cast: Wright’s script is said to feature both original Ant-Man Pym and later mantel-carrier Scott Lang as characters, supposedly with Lang as the “main” protagonist. That’s interesting in and of itself (Pym’s character went to some pretty dark places in the comics and modern retellings tend to cast him as an antihero at best) but it also leaves the door open for Pym (and the Ant-Man abilities) to appear in “Avengers 2” (or “Iron Man 3,” or “Thor 2,” or “Captain America 2,” or “Guardians of The Galaxy”) and then for Scott Lang to become Ant-Man in the series-proper. FWIW, the Comic-Con footage depicted Ant-Man either breaking into or out of what looked a lot like a S.H.I.E.L.D. facility.
An interesting footnote to this is the question of whether or not – Pym or no Pym – perennial Ant-Man sidekick/love-interest The Wasp (same powers, but with wings) turns up for “Avengers 2” as well; given that she’s a fan-favorite character and given that the team is overall hurting for a more diverse lineup.