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In 2006, the folks at the newly formed Marvel Studios began mapping out a plan of attack for a movie franchise. This endeavor included discussions about films for Iron Man, Hulk, Thor, Captain America, and Ant-Man. The last name on that list didn't get his own solo adventure until four years after the last of the others, but it was such a big hit that Ant-Man is now getting his own sequel in the form of Ant-Man And The Wasp.
The new film is set to be the first Marvel Studios feature with two titular heroes, but that's the least exciting thing about it in comparison to everything else it has going on. As we regularly do for upcoming major blockbusters, we've constructed this What We Know So Far guide to keep track of everything going on with Ant-Man And The Wasp, so read on, learn, and keep checking back for future updates!
What Is Ant-Man And The Wasp's Release Date?
Marvel Studios began a tradition of releasing three movies a year starting in 2017, and that tradition will continue in 2018. The year kicks off with Ryan Coogler's Black Panther in February, and it will be followed by Joe and Anthony Russo's The Avengers: Infinity War in May. Ant-Man and The Wasp will be title number three for Marvel, and is set to come out on July 6, 2018.
Of course, this release date puts the film in a fascinating position. The Avengers: Infinity War is expected to be a two-parter that concludes its story with the untitled Avengers 4, but it's unclear exactly how the movies released in-between will be impacted (especially Ant-Man And The Wasp, given that we expect to see all of the principal stars of Ant-Man in Infinity War). Captain Marvel, directed by Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck, is the only other title set to be released in this specific timeframe, and it will be curious to see if they will take the same or different approaches. We probably won't really know what to expect until the third Avengers movie is out in theaters.
What Is Ant-Man And The Wasp's Rating?
The MPAA doesn't get its hands on any movie until shortly before its release -- mostly because the version of the film they are viewing is the one that is likely going to be hitting theaters. Because of this, we can't say with absolute certainty what the rating of Ant-Man And The Wasp will be, but you can feel free to bet every cent you have on it ultimately being labeled with a PG-13 score.
Why? For starters, it wouldn't make a ton of sense for Ant-Man And The Wasp to be R-rated simply because it's not a rating that really fits the character (even if Paul Rudd can be really funny when allowed to curse as much as he wants). More importantly, however, it's been firmly stated by higher-ups at Disney that despite the success seen by titles like Deadpool and Logan, there are no plans to make an 18+ movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. For something closer to that, fans are much better off checking out the Marvel Netflix shows like Daredevil, Jessica Jones, or Luke Cage.
In case you don't remember, there was a bit of a kerfuffle regarding the director job on the first Ant-Man. Writer/director Edgar Wright had been attached to the project for years and years, co-writing the script with partner Joe Cornish, but just a few months before the start of production the filmmaker and Marvel Studios parted ways over creative differences. Director Peyton Reed, who was once almost brought on to make Guardians of the Galaxy, was hired as Wright's replacement -- and the studio was so happy with his work that they brought him back for the sequel.
Pulling in $519 million globally, Ant-Man made a strong showing when it was in theaters back in the summer of 2015, and Peyton Reed was able to ride that success to a gig directing Ant-Man And The Wasp. Of course, an important difference in the making of the sequel is that Reed has had much more than a few weeks for pre-production, and instead has had a much greater amount of time to construct the comic book adventure film he really wants to make.
What Is The Story Of Ant-Man And The Wasp?
To date, no official plot synopsis has been released for Ant-Man And The Wasp, but there are a few avenues that we certainly expect the 2018 blockbuster to explore. The most obvious is present right in the title, as we have not yet gotten to see Evangeline Lily's Hope Van Dyne suit up in her specially-designed flying/shrinking suit. That being said, if the film is actually set in the year 2018, that means we may be reintroduced to her with three full years of experience under her belt.
The other plot thread we expect the sequel to explore is the mystery behind the original Wasp, a.k.a. Janet Van Dyne. As we learned in Ant-Man, she and Hank Pym (Michael Douglas) used to operate as a spy duo for S.H.I.E.L.D. -- but she disappeared forever when she exceeded safeguards and overrides her suit's regulator, disappearing into the Quantum Realm (a.k.a. the Microverse). When Scott Lang (Paul Rudd) is in the alternate dimension, the shadow of Janet Van Dyne can be seen, and it's been heavily suggested that Ant-Man And The Wasp will follow the endeavor to try and rescue her.
Another plot thread the sequel will have the opportunity to follow concerns the fate of Martin Donovan's Mitchell Carson. He got away with a vial full of Pym Particles at the end of Ant-Man, and while there was a deleted scene that featured him being captured by Scott Lang, that's not officially canon. As a result, we may learn what happened to Carson and his sample of shrinking molecules in Ant-Man And The Wasp.
Thanks in large part to the never-ending charm of Paul Rudd, Scott Lang has quickly emerged as a fan-favorite character in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and the simple promise of seeing him back on the big screen again is exciting. We not only got to see his origin story play out in the original Ant-Man -- which chronicled his path from thief ex-con to shrinking superhero -- but in 2016 fans also got to see him fight as part of Team Cap in Captain America: Civil War (where he made his debut as Giant Man). Of course, that film had some pretty serious consequences for the character, and we'll have to see how Ant-Man And The Wasp deals with them.
Last we heard from Scott Lang, he was being kept as a prisoner on the underwater prison known as The Raft -- but his incarceration didn't last very long. Along with Hawkeye (Clint Barton), Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen) and Falcon (Anthony Mackie), Scott is released by Captain America -- though we don't know where he went from there. This answer very well may come in The Avengers: Infinity War, but there may wind up being so many questions that some of them need to be answered in Ant-Man And The Wasp. For example, what has been up with his ex-wife (Judy Greer) and daughter, Cassie (Abby Ryder Fortson)?
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