10 Actors Marvel Should Consider For ‘Ant-Man’

Published 2 years ago by , Updated October 15th, 2013 at 6:51 am, This is a list post.

Who Should Play Ant-Man?

Ant-Man Casting Barely a day after officially announcing plans to host an Iron Man 3 panel at San Diego Comic-Con 2012, Marvel Studios had what are likely meant to be surprise announcements leak out as if the floodgates had opened. Yesterday came confirmation that Guardians of the Galaxy is the next film on their slate to release in the summer of 2014, and after analyzing rumors that Ant-Man could appear in Iron Man 3, it was also confirmed that director Edgar Wright (Scott Pilgrim) just completed a week of shooting test footage for Ant-Man. So, with an Ant-Man's script by Wright and Joe Cornish (Attack the Block) done, test footage shot, and an official announcement imminent (potentially putting to rest years of rumors), let's examine 10 potential stars Marvel could sign (or have signed already) to play Henry Pym, aka Ant-Man.

Adrien Brody

Ant-Man Cast - Adrien Brody Two summers ago - the summer of Iron Man 2 - news surfaced that Adrien Brody's agents were pursuing the Ant-Man lead role for the Oscar winner. At the time he was promoting Predators - a film that proved he can do action - and he told us in an interview that there were some elements of truth to the reports. Brody is always a top-rumored candidate and at this point in time, he has a clear schedule to shoot Ant-Man, with his latest film, 1942, already in post-production.

Alan Tudyk

Ant-Man Cast - Alan Tudyk Alan Tudyk, who made an appearance in Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, was rumored for Ant-Man years ago. Edgar Wright denied such claims in 2010, quipping that it's "news to me." Rumors still surface for the fan-favorite actor and Joss Whedon (The Avengers) regular. Whedon would certainly not be opposed to working with Tudyk in The Avengers 2.

Benedict Cumberbatch

Ant-Man Cast Benedict Cumberbatch Benedict Cumberbatch, despite having recently earned a pile of smaller supporting roles in major films, hit it big thanks to his starring role in BBC's Sherlock - a role which helped him nab the lead villain gig in Star Trek 2 - a role that will push the man to stardom. Cumberbatch was rumored to be in consideration for a Marvel Studios project back in August 2011. He made an appearance at Marvel HQ last month where he took photos with employees and appeared with Steven Moffat on their podcast. Coincidence? The Brit actor just began shooting Steve McQueen's Twelve Years a Slave and his schedule is currently open to shoot with fellow Englishman, Mr. Wright, next year.

Joel Kinnaman

Lee Pace Ant-Man Casting Marvel Pushing Daisies Before breaking out into North American television and film, Joel Kinnaman was shortlisted for the lead role in Thor for a very good reason. Marvel Studios doesn't always test actors in the role they're actually considering them for (see: Tom Hiddleston) and that's what makes rumors about the Swedish actor up for a Marvel role interesting. After starring in The Killing and earning memorable roles in Safe House and The Darkest Hour, Kinnaman nabbed the coveted lead role as the next RoboCop, set to establish him as a household name. Both RoboCop and Edgar Wright's The World's End begin filming this September, and after that it's conceivable that they could work together for Ant-Man.

Josh Holloway

Josh Holloway Ant-Man Casting Marvel Lost The fan-favorite star of Lost hasn't had as much work as he deserves, but he turned some heads last year with his memorable key scenes in Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol. Rumors had Holloway meeting with Marvel way back in 2010 potentially for the Ant-Man gig, but his reps denied any such happenings. Holloway almost got his comic book movie breakout role as Gambit in X-Men Origins: Wolverine, but turned it down. He's got the look to do a good Hank Pym (and a great Yellowjacket) and can easily win fans over.

Simon Pegg

Ant-Man Cast Simon Pegg The moment Edgar Wright was tasked with penning the screenplay and helming Ant-Man for Marvel, it was almost a given for some fans that his pal Simon Pegg would take the lead role - and as such, he's been rumored ever since. According to Pegg himself, however, he'd rather be an Ant-Man villain. Perhaps Egghead, a frequent foe of Henry Pym would be more suitable?

Lee Pace

Lee Pace Ant-Man Casting Marvel Pushing Daisies Lee Pace, of Pushing Daisies fame, popped up in speculation and rumors last year as someone Marvel was interested in for a future Marvel role. Pace has key roles in multiple high-profile upcoming projects, including The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn - Part 2, Lincoln, and The Hobbit films - two of which will be at Comic-Con 2012, where it's possible the first test footage for Ant-Man could be presented by Marvel. Wouldn't that be smart timing to announce Pace, if he were cast in the role?

Bradley Cooper

Ant-Man Cast Bradley Cooper Bradley Cooper was rumored at the same time as Lee Pace to be someone in chats with Marvel, but he's a very busy and in-demand star. Fortunately, his big franchise is coming to an end with The Hangover 3 finishing shooting at the end of the year, and there are no set dates for his other projects after. Cooper has proven he can do action, drama and comedy, and he's one of the most bankable stars on this list. Let's not forget that he was a top contender for the Green Lantern role, so it'd be smart for Marvel to nab him for "Phase 2" of their franchise - in case Warner Bros. wants him for The Flash.

Joel Edgerton

Ant-Man Cast Joel Edgerton Joel Edgerton was name-dropped a year or two ago among Cooper and Pace in reports that they were all names Marvel Studios was interested in. The Aussie actor hit it big last year with Warrior and The Thing and is now a hot commodity in Hollywood. According to The Playlist, Marvel wants him badly for Dr. Strange, but the Ant-Man part was previously attached to the speculation regarding Edgerton's involvement with the studio.

Jensen Ackles

Ant-Man Cast Jensen Ackles Jensen Ackles was reportedly a top contender (and fan-favorite) for the Captain America role, and is a Comic-Con star for his countless appearances at conventions for Supernatural. That show may only have one season left and it'd be great timing for Marvel and Ackles to transition him from TV to film, with a key role such as Hank Pym.

Conclusion

Hank Pym as Wasp The 10 names listed for the lead part in Ant-Man are the most realistic, and certainly the most rumored/reported candidates of a much larger list which included fan fantasy casting like Armie Hammer, Benjamin Walker, Charlie Hunnam, David Duchovny, Joshua Jackson, Michael C. Hall, Nathan Fillion, Neil Patrick Harris, Patrick Wilson, Ryan Philippe, Ryan Kwanten, Simon Baker and Scott Caan. I'm sure you have your own ideas for who could play Ant-Man (and Wasp) so sound off in the comments below and expect more news in the coming weeks as we inch closer to San Diego Comic-Con and Marvel Studios' expected announcements. Be sure to keep a sharp eye on our 2012 Comic-Con Coverage Page. - Follow Rob on Twitter @rob_keyes.
TAGS: ant-man

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  1. BRADLEY COOPER! as a film student i would recommend bradley since ant man is a genius so remember limitless and cocky remember hangover
    bradley will be perfect!

  2. Lots of great prospects there. I really do hope that they go towards one of the smaller/unknown-er talents in the listing. Pulling from the smaller list has benefited Marvel handsomely so far and going younger also translates to solid sequels and new blood.

    • I agree to an extent. Ant-Man is such an unknown (and stupid according to some) character, I do think you need a big name in order to get the exposure needed to sell such a character.

  3. Very good list. Sadly, I can’t see a lot of them as Pym. I do love Bradley Cooper but I understand lots of people hate him. I think Brody might be my favorite if I couldn’t pick Cooper.

  4. I love the first two choices, Adrien Brody and Alan Tudyk; Josh Holloway isn’t a bad choice either. Bradley Cooper, is unfortunately much to big of a star, so when The Avengers re-assemble, you would have a very large ego.

    The thing with Ant- Man is the actor needs to be able to portray both extreme sensitivity to violence and empathy for villains, while being an very nerdy with the ability to be a tough fighter. I think one choice that wasn’t on the list was Ryan Gosling.

    The only thing missing from this article is the casting of Janet Van Dyne aka. Wasp. An Ant-Man film can not be made without her. Just saying.

    Thanks

    • I forgot to add another that is not on the list Aaron Staton from MadMen

  5. Simon Baker “The Mentalist” would also be a great contender.

  6. Simon Pegg! He’s a genius

    • I think Simon Pegg would be fine as Ant- Man if it wasn’t a title role. Unless it’s a comedy Pegg is best suited as a supporting actor.

      • It is written as an action comedy, no surprise given that Wright & Cornish are behind the screenplay.

        • I know Marvel Studios likes their movies to beaction-comedies but Ant-man should bethefurthest thing from one. Heart breaking.

  7. Brody, Tudyk, Pegg and/or Pace all seem like worthy contenders. Tudyk has the Whedon factor working for him but Brody has a reputation as being an actor/headliner first, which has been a benefit to Marvel with Norton, RDJ & Ruffalo. The other actors on the list seem a bit high-profile for, sorry, a lesser-known superhero. Of course, Tudyk & Pegg are scene-stealers and that could make the screen pretty crowded in Avengers 2 even though it might work well were they to carry a solo film.

    On a side note: Is Marvel still planning to do original shorts to open their feature films?

    • Not sure how they’d do in an action-hero setting, but a few names that come to mind for Janet/Wasp: Ginnifer Goodwin, Rachel Bilson, Mary Elizabeth Winstead and Alison Lohman.

      • True it maybe a little difficult, to incorporate the Jubilee character of the Avengers. But she is vital Pym’s life and career (wife and bankroll). I like the Rachel Bilson choice

      • In your list I only agree with Mary Elizabeth Winstead. I like Ginnifer, but I think she’s chosen her path as one with TV and romcoms. Rachel Bilson is eye candy and not much more, and it seems like Marvel’s been going a different direction than that (Scarlett has had a couple roles that involved more than having cleavage). And Alison Lohman I’ve always found to be a little vapid. I just think she’d be overwhelmed.

        But Winstead would be great. She can play strong, confident, and intelligent, but can also play vulnerable if necessary. Plus, I’d love to see her go places.

    • no need to be sorry about calling ant-man a lesser known hero. because he is. and even if they make the best movie they can with the character, i dont see him matching iron man, thor, or captain america’s numbers.

  8. Armie Hammer should have been in the top ten. The last half of that list was the only part that made sense casting wise.

  9. Alan Tudyk sounds great! He’s such an awesome actor! But no to Jensen. I can only really see him as Hawkeye and that role has been taken :P

  10. not even close! Why does it gotta be someone close to the age of 40? Why couldn’t you choose Shia Labeouf?

    • I agree they shouldn’t be that old. But, Shia is a bit to young. The actor should be playing age range around between 25-35. LaBeouf can still play young 20s and that will be a little hard to get by a casting director. Perhaps Chris Pine or Zachary Levi??

      • I’ve always seen Ryan Gosling playing Hank Pym. I know I’ve deviated from the list, but Gosling I see as Ant-Man, Giant-Man and Yellow Jacket. I can also see Adrien Brody playing Pym. The addition of Hank Pym would bring so much to the Avengers.

  11. Josh Holloway should be Ant-Man. He deserves a big movie role and this would be perfect for him. He can do action and bring humor to the role as well. Just my opinion

  12. Nathan Fillion for the win, although i wouldnt mind seeing Pegg in anything, the guys fantastic.

  13. I’d much rather see Bradley Cooper do The Flash than Ant Man. I feel like he’s just too big right now to JOIN an ensemble cast in Avengers, but if he could do Flash and possibly LAUNCH Justice League (after the Green Lantern mistep) he’d be perfect. Done well, it could be DCs version of Iron Man.

    For Ant-Man, I’d love to see Alan Tudyk, but I don’t think he’s big enough a star for studios to risk giving him a lead role. Lee Pace would be great as Ant-Man, and seems more likely to make the leap from strong supporting actor to lead than Tudyk, but I’m still not sure they’d be willing to take that kind of risk. My feeling is that Ant-Man will not be a summer blockbuster, but more like a filler-type movie as Captain America was. If that’s true, I feel like the couple up-and-comers on this list (such as Kinnaman) won’t want to do this movie as its a smaller movie that guarantees you’re in the background to the already established franchisers in Avengers 2-3, when you’d rather advance your career being the headliner more often. That means someone like Lee Pace, just looking from a career standpoint, is the perfect type of actor for this role. Not too big, not too small, but has experience in a leading role. Him or Adrien Brody, who can do this as an occasional change up from his less mainstream roles, essentially the same as Mark Ruffalo.

    • Valid Points, so Adrien Brody is still probably consensus as best choice, yes?

      • I think he has the career to do Ant-Man and still do the other things he wants, but personally don’t think he fits the part well.

    • Agree !… B.Cooper should become a DC member (FLASH)

  14. Very good list. Might I suggest another up in-coming / already making it big? Chris Pine. Of course, he has the trek franchise and what not, but he kind of looks like Pym. He’s a little stocky but who really cares? Like it was mentioned before, they need someone that the general audience knows to carry the character/ possible franchise.

    “Want to go see Ant-Man movie?”. Sounds awful and unappealing.
    Now, with a star in the lead role, “Want to go see Bradley Cooper’s (Or Capt. Kirk’s) new movie ‘Ant-Man’?” Boom. Extra million dollars or so for Marvel Studios just with his name and abs attached to the movie.

    • I think the better approach for Marvel is to assume that this will be a smaller movie. It shouldn’t be a blockbuster as its going to be a hard sell. So instead of trying to make a hard sell bigger by getting a big name, spending a bunch of money, and coming up short (think Daredevil) they should make a smaller movie that comes out in April or March and paves the way for an Avengers summer.

      • I agree with you, should be a lesser known actor. They could sign him to do a ton of movies in the future with saving a ton of $$$. With that said, why bother making an Ant-Man movie if it’s going to be a hard sell to the general audience? A nobody in the lead role will hurt them bad at the box office in terms of money. That is why in my mind and others that they need a seasoned if not a up in-coming name to play the character. I say introduce Ant-Man through the up-coming movies and avoid diaster (potentially) in the future with his own film, that’s if they cast a nobody.

        • The thought behind making Ant-Man isn’t necessarily to sell it, its to eke out a little extra profit from the Avengers franchise. Spend a small amount of money on it, release it a few months before Avengers 2 when there’s not a lot of competition, get diehard fans into the theater, and when it hits the top of the box office (since it won’t have a lot of cometition) you get some good press while people talk about it and its relation to the “heavily anticipated Avengers 2.” Then expect a bump on DVD sales when people who missed Ant-Man want to know who he is when they see him in Avengers 2.

          Seems to be the way Marvel is running. One big movie a year, one (and now maybe two) smaller movies that relate to the whole. Consider Thor.

  15. How about Nathan Fillion……He is pretty good!!Plus his comic timing is pretty good(Castle) also he is a fan-fav

    • He’s getting old but I too love him as a Marvel character.

    • Nathan doesnt wanna do it. He actually said (jokingly but seriously) the character sucks.lol

  16. Well, I guess you should do one for Scott Lanfg since he is apparently heading the movie.

    • **Lang

    • Stop! Don’t think that way! Negative vibes are BAD. Keep praying with the rest of us they changed that awful script and are going to be headlining Hank Pym instead.

  17. nathan fillion should be the 1 !!!!!! or if not ant-man then as green lantern in its reboot!!

  18. My vote still goes to Brody.

  19. people know who i’ll say :)

  20. Hey I really would Bradly Cooper, but I think he would fit better as The Flash if Warner Brothers decides to use him in There upcoming Justice League Movie but then again he would fit well as ant man too, I really dont care as long as he is choosen for one character id be happy now the other ones sound ok, I also think Scott Lanfg, Natthan fillon would be good too

    • Dye Nathan Fillion’s hair red and have him play O’Grady :P That’s the only part I can see him play. A low-life coward stalker who attacks the scientist he’s supposed to protect and then steal his invention to go spy on girls in the shower.

      That being said, I don’t want to see O’Grady in the movie LOL

  21. From this list, Alan Tudyk or Josh Holloway would be good choices that are familiar faces that wouldn’t break the bank like Brody or Cooper would. Personally, if it is going for an action-comedy type of movie, I’d go with Tudyk as Pym and have Pegg as the villain. For Janet/Wasp, I’m not sure…maybe Sienna Guillory or Mary Elizabeth Winstead.

  22. never read ant man. why is this guy so speacial?

    • He can shrink to 1/2″ tall and grow upwards of 200′ tall at will. He also has the ability to use this power on other objects and people and can communicate with insect life via a special helmet.

    • Nothing really special about him, he created Vision and Ultron though. Not even sure if he has had his own comic title in recent memory.

  23. A surprisingly good list.

    I would probably pick Cooper, Brody and Holloway (I liked him since LOST and think he proved ha can do more than the “lone wolf” guy after Ghost protocol)

    Why can’t Cooper plat BOTH Ant-Man and Flash? Sure it might get a bit weird but considering how far DC seems to be away from even casting for a JL movie, we shouldn’t be saving an actor for something that may be years away.

    And I think Jensen Ackles should be hired to be the next Batman.

    • Becausw he cant.

    • I hope Jensen gets a shot at something – be it Batman, or a Marvel property.

  24. i dont want to see an antman movie but i would be cool with him being a supporting character .. and i think they should go a cheaper route then big name .. thery paying rdj big bucks and evans and hemsworth are gonna make some bank too

  25. James Badge Dale.

    • Might be weird considering he’s in Iron Man 3. Imagine him showing up right after as an entirely different character after the credits, hah.

  26. ok so from what I’m reading from everyone. It’s split down the middle, basically Adrien Brody or Bradley Cooper, plenty of support for Nathan Fillion, Alan Tudyk, and Josh Holloway (honorary mention to Chris Pine). Like I said in an earlier post, whomever is chosen to be Hank Pym, needs to be able to portray extreme sensitivity to violence (like as an absolute last resort), very nerdy, and (when pushed to it) very fierce fighter. I like Josh Holloway but I’m not sure of his acting prowess, but if this is just suppose to be a smaller budget film, like a winter/spring release I would go with him or Tudyk. Now, Nathan Fillion has said he would not want to do Hank Pym, so we will just rule him out. Now if its suppose to be a summer/ late fall release you need star power. Producers would jump at Bradley Cooper, but there is just something about him that just doesn’t seem to fit (from a fan’s view) perhaps he would immediately become the biggest name in the next Avengers film, dethroning R.D.J as hard to believe as that would be. But I think Brody would be a phenomenal choice, he does not really seem to have an ego and he is talented enough to portray that vast emotions that Pym goes through, seemingly everyday. But he would seem to mesh with the cast of Avengers, a la Ruffalo. I still think Gosling would be the best choice, I just don’t think he would do it.

    In honest opinion, I think the best option would be to introduce Ant Man and Wasp as a smaller role in one of the other films; example Nick Fury/ Black Widow in Iron Man 2. We shall see.

    • Cooper needs to make his money now. RDJ is going to be around for awhile, Cooper might Matthew-McConaughey out soon. Cooper can’t afford to headline a 2nd stringer, unknown property like Ant-Man and then try to vault past RDJ in Avengers 2, as he will be outclassed and will hasten his descent into b-list territory. Not saying Cooper is DEFINITELY heading to b-list territory, but he needs to be very carful right now or we might be looking at the peak of his career. Also, I think what you’re seeing is a difficulty for Cooper to play vulnerable. He can play arrogant in spades, but I think Pym is also a very self conscious character (I’m basing this off of Ultimates, btw, whcih it seems is the direction Marvel movies have taken for the most part).

      Now, the possiblity of him becoming a sleeper headliner in the JLA franchise as Iron Man was for Avengers would be good for JLA and good for Cooper’s career, he doesn’t have to share spotlight, and can be a pivotal part of JLA as the most human member (even though Batman is the one without powers, its Flash who’s typically closest to us regualar humans). Its what should have happened for Ryan Reynolds, but with Lantern misfiring he’s stuck trying to talk up the prospects of a Deadpool movie, as if that’s going to get his career back on track.

      This whole Cooper as Flash thing is just interesting to speculate on, though. I don’t think it’ll ever happen. I think WB is just going to keep screwing up scripts and JLA will never happen.

      As for Gosling. First off, I hate him. He doesn’t act so much as he overdoes. And on that note, I think he’s going to try and go the Oscar track, not action. Drive is an outlier, not the norm for him. He has to worry even more than than Cooper about being completely outclassed by RDJ.

      Chris Pine needs to headline too, and also lacks the right KIND of vulnerability to play Pym. He’s great at Kirk, pulls of the tactical genius thing, but I don’t think I could buy him as a science genius. Pine could have been a pretty good Cap, honestly.

      • BRoll I appreciate everything you just said. I meant in no way Bradley Cooper could ever out act Downey I just meant his name will carry more weight, even though Downey brought in $50mil for the Avengers. I agree that Gosling is much more interested in awards than action.

        Un related to the article, I believe you and I the only two who believe that the JLA movie will not be made in the next decade. Pretty sure the man of steel (seriously a gritty Superman? he is the boy scout which is why we love him) will make money but is going to be terrible, Green Lantern was already a bust. No movement on Wonder Woman, and going back to lighter Batman is going to be strange.

        Back to Ant-Man, I had a strange thought. This is probably a terrible idea, but its different which is why we are commenting on this. Colin Farrell or Logan Marshall Green (Prometheus) or way out of left field ( I really want to say Orlando Bloom just to get raged responses) Zachary Levi.

  27. Josh Holloway seems pretty good for it. Bradley Cooper id rather see him play the flash for DC. And Simon Pegg he is funny and all but I don’t think he would fit right next to the avengers.

  28. I’ll probably get a lot of flack for this, but am I the only one who believes that an Ant Man movie would be a waste of time and money? Not meaning to offend anyone, but there just doesn’t seem to be enough power and villain wise to justify a 150 million dollar movie to be made about him.

    • I agree, the ant man film doesn’t need to be anything over $50mil budget, other than his other half (wasp) and black panther; he is a very small character. Perhaps a black panther and ant man film?

  29. Nathan Fillion has always been my first pick. He’s about the right age for Ant-Man IMO, but he’ll just have shape up a bit (physically) and dye his hair. Brody, Holloway and Cooper (although, like many others here, I’d prefer to see Cooper as the Flash) are pretty good choices as well.
    Just not Simon Pegg… please don’t let it be Pegg.

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