Cindy Ord/Getty Images for Buffalo David Bitton
UPDATE: Marvel has confirmed the casting of Paul Rudd as the titular hero in Edgar Wright’s “Ant-Man.” According to their press release, “the casting of Rudd represents the actor that Marvel had long ago identified as its first choice to play Ant-Man, continuing the studio’s desire to cast actors that bring several dimensions to its onscreen heroes.”
In true Marvel style, the plot for “Ant-Man” is being kept under lock and key. But rest assured, as filming begins, more details about the production will inevitably slip out.
EARLIER (3:00 p.m. ET): The mystery over who will play Ant-Man in Edgar Wright’s upcoming superhero flick has been solved: TheWrap reports that Paul Rudd is in negotiations to portray the titular hero.
While Marvel and Rudd’s reps had no comment on the casting, TheWrap reported — and Variety also confirmed — that the actor was currently hammering out a deal to play Hank Pym, the scientist who can shrink himself down to an ant’s size and communicate with insects. Variety notes that the casting is akin to Marvel’s selection of Robert Downey Jr. to play Iron Man, who at the time was more of comic actor than an action leading man. And we all know how that worked out.
Rudd had been competing with Jospeh Gordon-Levitt for the part, though with the latter actor’s recent commitment to adapting Neil Gaiman’s “Sandman” series, he would have been too busy to take the role. TheWrap also reports that “Rudd has appeared noticeably slimmer [recently], and sources [say] that’s because he’s training for the physical role of Ant-Man.”
Rudd’s comedic sensibilities could come in handy if a potential “Ant-Man” plot scenario pans out. According to Variety, Wright has hinted in the past that the film could follow a later-era comic plot that has a thief named Scott Lang steal Ant-Man’s technology and assume his identity. So could Rudd be playing Lang instead of Pym? It seems we’ll have to wait for Marvel to first confirm his casting before we find out more about the plot.
Either way, we’re excited. Rudd’s an extremely likeable leading man and Wright’s movies are always entertaining. This collaboration should be excellent.
“Ant-Man” is slated to open on July 31, 2015.
[via TheWrap, Variety, h/t The A.V. Club]
Gallery | Actors With Heroic Jawlines
- Nikolaj Coster-Waldau
Once you’ve shtupped your sister on premium cable, like this “Game of Thrones” hunk has, it might be hard for the world to see you as a good guy. He’s got the looks (and the drool-worthy Men’s Health cover) to pull off the cape, but while WB happily hired a Brit, would they have gone for a Dane?
- Bill Hader
Seems like we’re not the only ones who thought the “SNL” star looked kinda heroic. So far his only “super” credit is “Superbad,” but it’s a shame he left SNL just as they might need a Superman skit.
- Aaron Eckhart
He’s got a jawline that won’t quit (and dig that super chin!), but Eckhart got his start playing bad guys. His noble Harvey Dent in “The Dark Knight” was his only superhero-related outing so far, and we all know how that ended.
- Thomas Jane
There’s no rule about playing more than one superhero (See: Chris Evans) but Jane was already The Punisher. It’s a role that required yes, a strong jaw, and a certain quiet, intimidating presence. Also guns, which Supes is not really about. Plus, Superman has never been blond.
- Jon Stewart
He’s got a chin that’s only outdone in talk-show circles by Jay Leno, but he’s probably too short and a tad too old to be Superman. But hey, we can picture him as a (really sarcastic) Jor-El! Comic book trivia: There was a Green Lantern named John Stewart.
- Jon Hamm
He’s been rocking that slicked-back hair for years as ad exec Don Draper on “Mad Men.” Who’s to say there isn’t a set of tights under that well-tailored suit? Of course, his less-than-stellar moral code rules out the character (not the actor) for championing Truth, Justice, and The American Way.
- Tom Cruise
He’s made a career playing strong-jawed heroes who defy the odds. He was reportedly once in line to play Iron Man, something we can’t picture at all. We can’t really see him as Superman either, even if we squint. Sorry, Tom, that’s one role (unlike Jack Reacher) where you really do have to be tall.
- Jake Gyllenhaal
We’re so used to thinking of Jake as “sensitive” that it’s easy to overlook his more manly qualities. He was a tough cop in “End of Watch,” and he was once in the running to play Batman and Superman, and nearly stepped in as Spider-Man when Tobey Maguire injured his back. Are there any other superheroes left to cast?
- Jim Caviezel
Hey, Christian Bale managed being both Jesus and Batman, so why couldn’t Caviezel (our most famous modern Christ) don the tights as Superman? Probably because he’s busy kicking ass on “Person of Interest,” where he gets to kick ass, avenge the unavenged, and brood handsomely sans spandex
- Ryan Reynolds
Since he’s already been one WB superhero (And one Marvel one. Kinda.), it was never in the cards for Reynolds to suit up as Superman. Plus, we couldn’t ever take him seriously, and the role requires a degree of gravity and earnestness we haven’t yet seen from him.
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