Edgar Wright Exits Marvel’s ‘Ant-Man’ as Director

Edgar Wright Ant Man
Ilya S. Savenok/Getty Images

In a surprise announcement, Edgar Wright has left Marvel Studios’ “Ant-Man” as its director, the company said Friday.

Marvel is zeroing in on a new filmmaker, but is not in negotiations with one yet, Variety can confirm. When announcing Wright’s departure, Marvel said “a new director will be announced shortly.”

Hollywood and Marvel’s fan community will be scratching its head for awhile over this one, considering Wright has been attached to “Ant-Man” since 2006 — before the first “Iron Man” film — as a screenwriter. He has regularly gone to San Diego Comic-Con to give updates on the project’s development, and even showed test footage in 2012 of his approach to bringing the size-shifting character to the bigscreen.

Marvel and Wright parted ways “due to differences  in their vision of the film,” the company and director said in a statement.

The decision to move on is amicable, they added, and does not impact the release date of July 17, 2015. The film had originally been dated for Nov. 6, 2015.

Paul Rudd, Michael Douglas and Evangeline Lilly star in the film, with Corey Stoll, Michael Pena and Patrick Wilson.

SEE ALSO: ‘Godzilla’s’ Gareth Edwards to Direct ‘Star Wars’ Spinoff

In addition to helming, Wright also co-wrote the script with Joe Cornish (“Attack the Block”). Wright most recently directed the comedy “The World’s End,” and “Scott Pilgrim vs. the World,” “Hot Fuzz” and “Shaun of the Dead” before that.

Cornish could conceivably take over the project, given his close involvement with it over the years.

He had been considered for “Star Trek 3” but opted for Universal’s spy thriller “Section 6,” set to star Jack O’Connell, instead. Film revolves around the formation of British intelligence agency MI6.

Marvel is developing “Ant-Man” as a potential new franchise as part of its third phase of films, the way it hopes to introduce the characters in “Guardians of the Galaxy” in August to hopefully appear in multiple movies.

In the comicbooks, Ant-Man is the alter-ego of biochemist Hank Pym, who uses subatomic particles to create a size-altering formula and when tests go awry, realizes he can also communicate with and control insects. The character also plays a key role in forming the Avengers, but that role will have to change in the films.

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  1. Jedi77 says:

    A sad sad day for the future of Marvel. I really fear more Thor 2, less depth and ideas in our future.

  2. The Avengers Is Not a Good Movie says:

    Guess Marvel was just doing what they do best by stifling and streamlining would-be creative visions.

    • Jalachlan says:

      Hey, you posted that exact same comment on Screenrant with that exact same username. Just thought I’d point it out.

    • JoelR says:

      Not just Wright. “Cabin in the Woods'” Drew Godard is now off the DAREDEVIL series .

  3. Bruno says:

    Hank Pym would be Michael Douglas and Scott Lang (the second Ant-Man) would be Paul Rudd

  4. thatmovieyousee says:

    Reblogged this on That Movie You See.

  5. mattprime86 says:

    A while*

  6. Bobby says:

    “The character eventually pairs up with the Avengers.”

    Correction: He helped found the Avengers in the comics.

  7. an says:

    it probably has to do with the direction of the story. edgar wright wanted to make a caper spanning decades featuring douglas as an older pym and rudd is lang, and marvel probably wants the story revolving around young pym, which i imagine wilson was going to be. considering marvel plans to stay in the movie making business, going with an older pym is a waste, when they could just as well introduce lang later.

  8. Hmm. Ant-Man? Not interested. Joe Cornish? Not interested. Paul Rudd? Not interested.

    The best thing about this entire project was Edgar Wright. What the hell???

  9. thomas says:

    Not that I would’ve gone to see Ant-Man anyway: I refuse to pay things I don’t need when expected to pay for things I do, however – I do actually feel for Edgar Wright.

    So, what can be said about this…..it reeks of shit.

    • Duder NME says:

      Would one of those “do need” things be alimony payments? Peanut butter Skittles? A spoiler for a golf cart? World peace? Clarification required.

    • CTSadler says:

      “I refuse to pay things I don’t need when expected to pay for things I do”

      Uh huh.

  10. JD says:

    The character does not “eventually pairs up with the Avengers” He was a founding member.

  11. Lexavi80 says:

    Terrible news

  12. JoelR says:

    Wrigfht spends nearly 8 years of his life on this project…and Marvel gives hin the boot? What…not enough one-liners to please them? I hope Wright runs over to Warners with a treatment for The Atom!

    • Jason Diend says:

      I don’t think that is going to happen. Its Wright’s story that is going forward. More the likely its going to have edited version of his script getting filmed. Which means his treatment has been accepted. Also Warner would never do an Atom movie they don’t think anyone outside of Batman and Superman are viable properties.

    • Ralsto says:

      Where does it say that they fired him? Oh, that’s right. Nowhere. You completely made that up.

      • Duder NME says:

        I’m surprised it took Marvel this long to realize they had an artist, and not a franchise bot, on their hands. Regarding this and Aronofsky’s Wolverine departure, t’aint much difference between Marvel and Fox.

      • JoelR says:

        @Joey…I know what it means and believe you me…the buzz has already turned into a mild roar already.. As for the “differences.” , yeah that could be anything. Perhaps he was hoping to make a less-formulaic movie (which would be a big plus for me within the same-old, same-old Marvel-Verse).,
        Maybe Kevin Feige wants more of a “yes-man.” And Marvel has a history of dumping creative personnel…Patty Jenkins was let go as director of THOR 2 and look what a snooze-fest that turned out to be (a cookie-cutter movie for sure.) Also: Matthew Vaughn, Ed Norton, etc. So no…I hold out little optimism for Ant-Man now.

      • Joey says:

        @JoelR, I really don’t think you actually understand what a buzzword means if you don’t realize that “Creative differences” could mean anything. At all.

      • JoelR says:

        If you knew anything about this business, ..it’s called “reading between the lines.” It is VERY rare that “walking papers” are specifically announced in public press releases. “Creative differences” is a buzz word/euphemism. Oh wait…you’re right! You’ve convinced me! After 8 years work, and a green light, Wright suddenly decides to leave. Just as Sam Raimi so “amicably” parted ways with Spider-Man.

    • Jay Young says:

      That would be awesome. I’d definitely go watch an Atom movie!

      • JoelR says:

        So would I. But Jason is right…Warners would never do an Atom movie. Or Hawkman. Or Captain Marvel. Or a better Green Lantern. Or Black Canary. Or Martian Manhunter. Or. …

  13. Olman Says says:

    #WrightisRight to direct this film. I wish they could settle whatever silly differences they have, for us the fans. =0( (I’m really sad to hear this news).

  14. Jason Diend says:

    Edit your article its been confirmed so far that Micheal Douglas is playing Hank Pym however the title character of Ant-Man is Paul Rudd who is playing Scott Lang. There have been 3 Ant-Man in the comics Pym, Lang and O’Grady. Each is a very different character who happen to share a code name at different times.

  15. Chelsea says:

    Not Cool.

  16. therealeverton says:

    Sad news, been looking forward to this for years

  17. Shawn says:

    This is depressing news, Wright’s involvement was the only reason I was interested in the film.

    • JoelR says:

      SAme here. Never was a big fan of Ant-Man, Giant Man, Yellowjacket, or whatever other names it was under. Wright was the draw for me.

  18. Ted-arded says:

    The article clearly states that it was a joint statement issued by Marvel and Edgar Wright. Pretty clear to me that this was an official announcement.

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