Some Hollywood insiders probably know exactly why Disney/Marvel and Edgar Wright split over Ant-Man after Wright had worked on it for eight years, but they’re harder to get on the record than Goldman Sachs execs. Thus, we have to build a composite portrait from various accounts. The latest detail to add comes from Evangeline Lilly, who’ll be playing Hope Van Dyne in the film, the original Ant-Man Hank Pym’s daughter oops I’ve just been wedgied. In an interview with Buzzfeed, Freckles explained how she nearly dropped out of Ant-Man when she found out Edgar Wright was leaving, since she hadn’t signed for the now-to-be-directed-by-Peyton-Reed film yet. But she read the new script and eventually came to realize that Wright’s vision didn’t fit in within the wider Marvel Universe. Weird how you gradually come to agree with the people signing your paychecks, isn’t it?
“I thought Edgar’s idea to blend the [Hank and Scott] stories was brilliant,” she says. “You’re going to have fans up there who insist that you tell the story of Hank Pym, and fans up there who will be more on the Scott Lang side of it. … I think we are going to come close to pleasing them all.”
Then when she heard Edgar Wright had left, she almost left with him. BUT…
Once she finally could read the new Ant-Man script, Lilly found her own writer’s affinity for world creation informing her appreciation for why Marvel and Wright had to part ways. “I saw with my own eyes that Marvel had just pulled the script into their world,” she says. “I mean, they’ve established a universe, and everyone has come to expect a certain aesthetic [and] a certain feel for Marvel films. And what Edgar was creating was much more in the Edgar Wright camp of films. They were very different. And I feel like, if [Marvel] had created Edgar’s incredible vision — which would have been, like, classic comic book — it would have been such a riot to film [and] it would have been so much fun to watch. [But] it wouldn’t have fit in the Marvel Universe. It would have stuck out like a sore thumb, no matter how good it was. It just would have taken you away from this cohesive universe they’re trying to create. And therefore it ruins the suspended disbelief that they’ve built.” [Buzzfeed]
Yikes. I hate to read too much into a quote from an actress who’s probably just trying to please her bosses, but it’s still chilling to hear a creative say “yeah, it would’ve been amazing, it just wouldn’t have fit the corporate vision and that’s what’s most important.”
I enjoy the serialized storytelling model in some ways, but in other ways it feels like it’s creating an army of proto-fascists who think the machine is their best friend. DURRR, THIS MOVIE DIDN’T MEET MY EXPECTATIONS. F*ck your expectations, popcorn clown, some of us like being surprised.