*UPDATED – You can now ignore the below as it seems that Adam McKay has already pulled out of this gig. Oh dear. So it looks like the race is back in the hands of Ruben Fleischer and Rawson Thurber. More news as it happens.
We found out yesterday that Marvel had created their shortlist of directors to replace (if that’s possible) Edgar Wright on the upcoming Ant-Man movie. That shortlist was made up of Zombieland helmer Ruben Fleischer, Dodgeball director Rawson Thurber and the man behind Anchorman Adam McKay.
It has since been announced that McKay has been given the job. I find all three of the shortlisted candidates interesting purely from a tone standpoint. It’s certain now that Marvel want to focus on the comedic aspects of Ant-Man, particularly looking for something a bit leftfield and offbeat.
It’s an interesting choice, and one that most likely plays to Paul Rudd’s casting as the titular hero. McKay has a great history of working with Rudd, and will no doubt get the best out of him in a comedic sense.
Well anyone who has seen 2010’s The Other Guys can agree that McKay has a good grasp of action. And assuming he brings his regular DoP Oliver Wood then going large scale shouldn’t be an issue; Wood has worked his magic on many action classics including Face/Off, The Bourne Supremacy and Die Hard 2.
Of course the loss of a visionary like Edgar Wright is still going to be the thing cinephiles will remember, even if Ant-Man turns out great. We will always be left wondering just what his film could have been. But at least choosing McKay makes Marvel look less like they just wanted a gun-for-hire and still wanted to make the film as interesting as possible.
Personally I would have gone with Fleischer as I think his aesthetic and visual sensibilities fit more closely with Wright, whilst also being truly original (also like Wright). But either way Marvel is doing some good work to lick their wounds. Stay tuned for more as we have it.