Why Edgar Wright Leaving ANT-MAN Is A Good Thing

Todd-Spence by Todd-Spence on May. 23, 2014

It pains me to find out that Edgar Wright, one of my favorite filmmakers working today, left Ant-Man due to creative differences...whatever that means.  The truth is, we will never know for at least a couple of years, or at earliest, when Edgar hosts another round of The Wright Stuff at New Beverly in Los Angeles where he tends to speak candidly in person.  Luckily, it seems his date book just opened up for such things, and for good reason.  We were never going to get a kickass Edgar Wright Ant-Man movie.  That's just not Marvel's style.

Let's be honest, no one ever cared about at Ant-Man movie until Wright got on board. And despite his originality as a filmmaker, he is afterall working on a huge studio movie and Marvel is no pushover when it comes to their brand.  I think the reason why most of us were excited is because this would have been the first time Edgar would have made a super high budget action comic book movie.  And frankly, that sounds awesome.  Sure, he made Scott Pilgrim with Universal, but word has it Universal pretty much let him do whatever he wanted to do.  They trusted him and the material, but more importantly the material was so under the radar, most people didn't know what a Scott Pilgrim was until that movie came out.  Ant-Man on the other hand is a different story.  He probably had to report to Marvel every day on how the film was going and after a while, especially if you're an artist and not a "director for hire", enough is enough.

Long story short, this would have turned into a Marvel movie for the money, not an Edgar Wright movie for the fans.  Luckily, Edgar got out of there before they turned him into a Sam Raimi (*Burn!)

Raimi on the set of Evil Dead 2, before he was forced to become vanilla by Marvel.

Now Raimi's a guy that let's the studio do what they want with him, taking a talent vacation when it comes to Marvel films.  Or Disney.  Dear Lord, Oz was rough.

Marvel hires these name directors like Bryan Singer, Kenneth Branaugh, Jon Favreau, Sam Raimi, Joss Whedon and Edgar Wright that have exactly what they're looking for.  Talent?  Oh Lord, no.  That'd be silly.  They hire them for their credibility.  And in turn, puts their name on the poster and ads to give the film automatic clout with fans, when really, you could barely tell the film's styles apart. 

It's a smart move on Marvel's part, but Edgar Wright isn't falling for it.  He has too much to lose with his fans if a really vanilla Ant-Man movie were to come out because as of right now, with Spaced, Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz, Scott Pilgrim vs. The World and The World's End, he's 5 for 5 when it comes to putting out really solid work, something the other director's can't quite say when they signed up for their Marvel films.  And in this round, the odds just weren't in Wright's favor when it came to an un-celebrated comic character funded by the biggest money machine in Hollywood.

So despite the blow movie buffs have experienced with Edgar Wright leaving the production, this in actuality is a good thing and only means what he directs next will be that much better.  Unfortunately, we're still guaranteed at least one crying scene with Paul Rudd as Ant-Man per Marvel's obvious requirements.

Discuss Edgar Wright's movies with me here: @Todd_Spence

30 comments
moisan4
moisan4 User

I'll give you 2 out of 5 tops: with Spaced and Shaun of the Dead. This by my calculations means he hasn't done anything "solid" in a decade. If two half assed Simon Pegg sequels and a hipster tween try-hard movie are the totality of your work for the last 10 years, you don't instill confidence in future endeavors.

Cymru123
Cymru123 User

When I first went to watch the first Marvel Avengers film I kept expecting that Ant-Man was going to turn up as he was a founding member of The Avengers, but strangely he didn't for some reason?

AnalogX
AnalogX User

Edgar who? Scott Pilgrim? Ummm yeah that pretty much sums it up.

RestlessVagabond
RestlessVagabond User

The writer of this article is obviously an Edgar Wright fanboy.  Bryan Singer, Kenneth Branaugh, Jon Favreau, Sam Raimi and Joss Whedon don't get hired because of their talent?  REALLY?  Jon Favreau had to fight the studio tooth and nail to direct Iron Man AND to get the actor he wanted.  The first Thor wasn't the best but Kenneth Branaugh's larger body of work far outshines anything Edgar Wright has ever done.  Spaced and Scott Pilgrim vs the World were big hits, REALLY?  Spaced doesn't have any sort of name recognition or wide popularity outside of England and Scott Pilgrim vs the World is known mostly as a "major financial disappointment" to general audiences.  Edgar Wright has been cruising off the kudos he earned from Shawn of the Dead and hasn't put out a truly decent movie since.

Todd-Spence
Todd-Spence moderator User

@moisan4  The fact that you called those films "sequels" says it all.

Cymru123
Cymru123 User

@RestlessVagabond SPACED was popular throughout the whole of the UK, not just England.  The American version of SPACED however was a disaster.  I recommend seeking out the British version if you haven't seen it already, it's packed with loads of film & TV references and homages.  Above all though, it's a great comedy with fantastic direction from Wright.

Todd-Spence
Todd-Spence moderator User

@RestlessVagabond  Spaced doesn't have any sort of name recognition or popularity outside of England?  Hilarious.

RoweMatthew
RoweMatthew

@Todd_Spence he's one of the few directors I see a film for purely because of their name. I'd even go and see '3 Grannies Have A Tea Party'

RestlessVagabond
RestlessVagabond User

@Cymru123 @RestlessVagabond I sort of lump the rest of the UK in when I say England.  I don't care enough to differentiate.  My point is it has almost NO name recognition here in the States, despite what Troll-Spence thinks.