Earlier today, we shared a few nuggets of information about Marvel’s highly anticipated sequel Avengers: Age of Ultron from writer/director Joss Whedon, but now it’s time to hear from Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige. He’s been the mastermind behind the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe from the beginning, and way back when Jon Favreau was gearing up to begin production on the first Iron Man, Feige already had Edgar Wright working on a feature film adaptation of Ant-Man. Wright’s a busy guy so it’s taken some time for the movie to come together, but he finally has his cast set and is gearing up to begin production in just a few months ahead of Ant-Man’s July 2015 release date.
During a recent interview, Feige talked a bit about Wright’s Ant-Man, confirming that the story they locked into place for the film all those years ago has impacted how Marvel approached its cinematic universe (specifically the lineup for The Avengers), knowing how Ant-Man would later come into play. Moreover, he again teased the appearance of Thanos in Guardians of the Galaxy. Read on after the jump.
We already know that Wright has a unique take on Ant-Man since Michael Douglas and Paul Rudd have been cast as Hank Pym and Scott Lang, respectively, which are two separate characters that donned the Ant-Man suit in the comics. Speaking with Empire (via Latino Review), Feige revealed that this idea has affected the Marvel movies leading up to Ant-Man:
“We changed, frankly some of the MCU to accommodate this version of Ant-Man. Knowing what we wanted to do with Edgar and with Ant-Man, going years and years back, helped to dictate what we did with the roster for Avengers the first time. It was a bit of both in terms of his idea for the Ant-Man story influencing the birth of the MCU in the early films leading up to Avengers.”
Feige also discussed the casting of Rudd as the lead, describing why he’s the perfect fit to play Lang:
“Look at that origin of the petty crook who comes into contact with a suit and does his best to make good, and then look at someone like Paul Rudd, who can do slightly unsavoury things like break into people’s houses and still be charming and who you root for and whose redemption you will find satisfaction in.”
“It was two things – a story Edgar wanted to tell that we’ll see with Michael Douglas and Paul Rudd, and now we’re 11 films in, it’s looking at the characters we’ve already introduced who already have the technology and the brains to do…certain things [Laughs].”
With regards to Thanos, we already have confirmation that the Big Bad will appear in motion-capture form in this August’s Guardians of the Galaxy, and Feige confirmed (via CS) that they do have an actor in place to fill the role, but it’s unsurprisingly being kept under wraps:
“There is an actor. I’m not sure we want to announce it yet.”
Rumors have swirled that Vin Diesel isn’t simply doing the voice of Groot in Guardians but is instead filling the role of Thanos, and seeing as how Groot’s speech patterns only consist of one word (his own name), I’d say that seems like a real possibility.
We’ll find out for certain when Guardians of the Galaxy opens in theaters on August 1st of this year, while Ant-Man hits the big screen on July 17, 2015.