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Monday, January 13, 2014

Michael Douglas Cast In Marvel's 'Ant-Man'

It came out last month that Paul Rudd had been cast in the titular role of Edgar Wright's upcoming Marvel film, 'Ant-Man'.  While that would seem fairly straight forward, there was still a bit of mystery as to whom exactly he would be playing. See there have been two different men who carried the title "Ant-Man", Hank Pym and Scott Lang. In the Marvel comics Hank Pym is a genius scientist, a founding member of The Avengers and responsible for the creation of the main villain in the next Avengers film, Ultron. Scott Lang, on the other hand, began as a thief who stole the shrinking tech from Pym in order to become Ant-Man.  So the big question is which one will Paul Rudd be playing in Wright's film?

The answer was revealed by Marvel in a press release today by also announcing the casting of Michael Douglas as Hank Pym for the movie.  This means that Rudd will be playing Lang and be the main hero of the film.  Pym will also appear in the movie but instead of being a contemporary of The Avengers, he will be of an earlier generation.  This seems to jive with what Wright has been saying for years, that he conceived of the Ant-Man movie taking place in two eras, showing the creation of the shrinking tech in the 60's and the theft and use of it in a modern setting.

I have mixed feelings about this news today.  Adding a legendary actor like Douglas to the mix certainly strengthens the cast.  It also seems to indicate that Pym won't be a throw-away character even though they are focusing on Lang.  As a big fan of Pym I have been pretty bummed by all the talk that Lang would be our modern Ant-Man.  By making Pym an older character though they may have potentially fixed something that was beginning to worry me even more about the future of the Marvel Cinematic Universe though.  My personal preference would have been to have a young Pym, but my nerd rage would hit high gear if Hank Pym had nothing to do with the creation of Ultron.

It seem minor to non-comic fans, but Pym and Ultron are as linked in my mind as Frankenstein and his monster.  Iron Man 3, with all the remote controlled suits and "retirement", seemed to indicate Stark may be on the path to the creation of Ultron which really left me with a bad taste.  This worry seemed to be reinforced with word that "Ant-Man" wouldn't appear until his own movie after the next Avengers film.  By casting Douglas so early though, and making him older, there is no reason he couldn't appear in the next Avengers film though simply as Dr Hank Pym of SHIELD.  It might make alot of sense to show that this was the genius who carried on the baton from Howard Stark by designing the likes of the Helicarrier and more for SHIELD.  I could even imagine some nice scenes with Tony designing in the workshop with Pym assiting in the creation of Ultron and playing off the unresolved daddy issues that have been set up in the previous films . . . sorry I went a little too fan-boy there!

Bottom line is that Paul Rudd is Scott Lang, Michael Douglas is Hank Pym and I am a little more consciously optimistic than I was . . . though still far from thrilled.

I want to know what you guys think.  Do you think this a is a great idea? Or a complete misstep? What are you hoping for from the future of the Marvel Cinematic Universe? Let your voices be heard in the comment below!    

Source: Marvel


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