The Real Reason Edgar Wright Left Ant-Man, According To Edgar Wright

Ant-Man jumping

In 2006, two years before Iron Man launched the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Marvel hired Shaun of the Dead's Edgar Wright to direct and co-write an Ant-Man movie. Wright was attached to the tiny crimefighter's movie for eight years, but three months before Ant-Man was scheduled to begin shooting, Wright departed over creative differences. There have been various reports since then about what specifically led Wright to leave Ant-Man, and in a new interview, he set the record straight by explaining that his exit was primarily motivated by the lack of control he ultimately had with the blockbuster. According to Wright:

The most diplomatic answer is I wanted to make a Marvel movie but I don't think they really wanted to make an Edgar Wright movie. It was a really heartbreaking decision to have to walk away after having worked on it for so long, because me and Joe Cornish in some form---it's funny some people say, 'Oh they've been working on it for eight years,' and that was somewhat true, but in that time I had made three movies. So it wasn't like I was working on it full time. But after The World's End, I did work on it for like a year, I was gonna make the movie. I was the writer-director on it, and then they wanted to do a draft without me, and having written all my other movies, that's a tough thing to move forward...Suddenly becoming a director for hire on it, you're sort of less emotionally invested and you start to wonder why you're there, really.

While plugging his latest movie, Baby Driver, on the Variety Playback Podcast, the conversation turned to Edgar Wright's time on Ant-Man, and he stated that although he was eager to make a Marvel movie, it was more important that he be part of the writing process every step of the way. So when the studio wanted to bring someone else in to write a draft, that's when Wright realized that this wasn't the best working environment for him, even after pouring so much time into bringing Marvel's shrinking superhero to life on the big screen.

By late May 2014, Marvel announced that Edgar Wright had stepped away from Ant-Man, and a few weeks later, Bring It On's Peyton Reed was announced as his replacement. Adam McKay was also brought in to re-write the script with lead actor Paul Rudd. Fast-forward to Ant-Man's release in August 2015, the movie was met with many positive reviews, and went on to make over $519 million worldwide. Wright was also given a 'Story By' credit with his co-writer at the time, Joe Cornish. Still, given how much control these studios like to exert to make sure their cinematic universes flow smoothly, it's hard to imagine Wright getting involved with another blockbuster of this scale, no matter how many people might like him to direct a DC movie.

Moviegoers can reunite with Scott Lang, Hope van Dyne, Hank Pym and the gang when Ant-Man and the Wasp hits theaters on July 6, 2018, while Edgar Wright's Baby Driver comes out next Friday, June 30.

Adam Holmes
Senior Content Producer

Connoisseur of Marvel, DC, Star Wars, John Wick, MonsterVerse and Doctor Who lore. He's aware he looks like Harry Potter and Clark Kent.