It's been over a year since Marvel Studios announced their official Phase 3 lineup of films through 2019, which kicks off next year with Captain America: Civil War. As was announced at the time, Phase 3 will include standalone features for superheroes like Doctor Strange, Black Panther, and Captain Marvel as well as new installments in the Thor and Avengers series. Since then, Marvel Studios has reshuffled a couple times to include a standalone Spider-Man feature as well as a sequel to Ant-Man, titled Ant-Man and The Wasp.
Though it isn't slated for release until 2018, we're already hearing bits about Scott Lang (Paul Rudd) and Hope van Dyne's (Evangeline Lilly) "weirder" entry in Marvel's Cinematic Universe. Now, in a recent interview Ant-Man and Ant-Man and The Wasp director Peyton Reed teased the sequel's different genre influences and weighed in on whether or not screenwriter Adam McKay will return.
While speaking to CBR, Reed said the filmmakers have an "entirely different genre template" for Ant-Man and The Wasp. While Ant-Man was roughly based on a heist movie template and set in the MCU, we already knew the film's sequel would be "very different" while still following through on story beats set up in the first movie. However, Reed didn't reveal what genre exactly they would be drawing inspiration from for Ant-Man and The Wasp.
Read Reed's full quote:
"I think there's probably going to be some aspects that maybe call back to the tone of this movie, but for "Ant-Man and the Wasp," we have an entirely different template. We know what that template is, and we have an entirely different genre template for that movie. But it's going to remain a surprise. But yes, that's already been decided."
Additionally, Reed said that McKay's involvement with Ant-Man and The Wasp is dependent on the writer's schedule, but said in no uncertain terms, "We want him back." In November, McKay also said he would like to return but that he has quite a few projects in development. Plus as Reed mentioned, McKay will be promoting his newest film, The Big Short, "well into the Oscar season." For now, it seems both director and writer are unsure as of yet in what capacity McKay will return to work on Ant-Man and The Wasp.
Although Ant-Man may have been hit or miss for viewers compared to other entries in the MCU, it received a generally positive response and passed $500 million at the global box office in October, making it a success for the studio. Arguably, the film's cast, especially Rudd in the lead role as Scott Lang, and Reed's direction helped to make Ant-Man an entertaining heist/superhero movie. However, depending on which genre Reed will pull from for Ant-Man and The Wasp, it remains to be seen whether that will work as successfully in the world of Ant-Man.
That being said, Marvel has so far been successful in using different genre inspirations for their films, with Captain America: The Winter Soldier drawing from '70s political thrillers and Guardians of the Galaxy following a space opera template. We may not yet know which genre template Ant-Man and The Wasp will follow - but based on the studio's past success in using various genres to differentiate the films in their superhero franchise, it stands a good chance of offering the sequel a compelling tone while further exploring the superheroes of Ant-Man and The Wasp.
Captain America: Civil War will release on May 6, 2016, followed by Doctor Strange – November 4, 2016; Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 – May 5, 2017; Spider-Man – July 28, 2017; Thor: Ragnarok – November 3, 2017; Black Panther – February 16, 2018; The Avengers: Infinity War Part 1 – May 4, 2018; Ant-Man and the Wasp – July 6, 2018; Captain Marvel – March 8, 2019; The Avengers: Infinity War Part 2 – May 3, 2019; Inhumans – July 12, 2019; and as-yet untitled Marvel movies on May 1, July 10 and November 6, 2020.