Having just crossed $2 billion at the box office, it still doesn’t feel like Avengers: Infinity War is in the rearview mirror, but we’re already on to our next MCU film – Ant-Man and the Wasp. With the movie hitting theaters on July 6th, it’s finally time to share the details we learned during our Atlanta set visit. Do keep in mind this set visit took place in September 2017, so while the events of Infinity War will no doubt change the course for every single character in the MCU, the snap hadn’t become the hottest topic of conversation just yet!
Plus, this new chapter in the Ant-Man series takes place in the aftermath of Captain America: Civil War anyway! Scott Lang (Paul Rudd) is aiming to steer clear of superhero responsibilities and instead, focus on being a good father. While it’s of the utmost importance to him to stay on the straight and narrow, when Hope van Dyne (Evangeline Lilly) and Hank Pym (Michael Douglas) come to him with an urgent mission, Scott has to suit up and help them out.
That right there is merely a light synopsis of what we’ll cover in Ant-Man and the Wasp. During our visit to set, we got a slew of additional information from the cast and crew, and you can catch all the highlights in the full “things to know” breakdown below.
Ant-Man and the Wasp is a mix of road movie, search-and-rescue movie, action movie, and romantic comedy. Director Peyton Reed explained that when he first started figuring out what this movie would look and feel like, things like After Hours and Midnight Run came to mind. The urgency comes from the mission to rescue Janet van Dyne (Michelle Pfeiffer). “It’s an impossible thing scientifically, but also if there’s urgency and there’s maybe a window of time they have to do it. It’s about collecting the people, the things, everything they need to do that.” Reed also added, “The first movie, really, the template was more of a heist movie and this wanted to be a little more of like an Elmore Leonard vibe where we have villains, but we also have antagonists, and we have these roadblocks to our heroes getting to where they need to be, and getting what they need for this mission.” On top of that, Reed teased that some of Ant-Man and the Wasp will feel like a two-hander action movie and other parts more along the lines of a two-hander romantic comedy.
The movie will feature more of San Francisco. Sure, the first Ant-Man took place in San Francisco too, but now that the character is well-established, Reed is aiming to explore the city more, well beyond Hank Pym’s house. He explained, “I just wanted to open the movie up and get out and take advantage of San Francisco because that felt like a different texture for the MCU that Ant-Man sort of occupies this corner of the universe and we wanted to really get outside and explore those elements.”
They’re taking a cue from The Empire Strikes back. There will be a period of time that passes between the first and second Ant-Man films. “I know that everyone who’s ever made a second installment of something refers to The Empire Strikes Back as the gold standard, but as a kid, I was 16 when that movie came out, and I loved that they really leapt ahead.” Reed continued, “The heroes are somewhere else now and the audience has to kind of catch up to what’s going on and what happened, and they’re forwarded in terms of their character, but also in terms of their circumstances and that felt like something we really wanted to do.”
As for how that pertains to the specifics of Ant-Man and the Wasp, Reed is leaning on the events of Captain America: Civil War. “My first questions were – what did Hank and Hope know about Scott going off and dealing with that situation with The Avengers and did they know about it? How did they feel about it? And surely this would’ve caused some kind of tension at worst and rift at best between the characters because Hank Pym’s very clear in the first movie about how he feels about Stark and how he feels about The Avengers and being very protective of this technology that he has. So that seemed like a really ripe sort of place to start in terms of character development.”
Ant-Man and the Wasp deals with the ramifications of Captain America: Civil War and uses the events of that film as a jumping off point. Here’s how Reed put it: “What I’m really happy about is, we’re free to tell sort of our free-standing story. Once we establish that as the leaping off point, this thing is going on over here with huge personal stakes and huge other stakes that are really separate of what’s going on with Infinity War.”