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!)
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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.
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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.
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Discuss Edgar Wright’s movies with me here: @Todd_Spence