We are mere hours into the full-blown hype train following the release of the first Avengers: Infinity War trailer. While a lot of digital ink has been spent speculating about the cosmic clash itself, just as much has been used discussing what happens after and what the ramifications are for the Marvel Cinematic Universe as it moves into Phase 4 and beyond. Where the story goes will depend a lot on the limits of the sandbox Marvel decides to play in. The first film out of the gate following Avengers: Infinity War is Ant-Man and the Wasp, and that film will continue the upheaval of the MCU as we know it. Evangeline Lilly, who plays The Wasp, is no stranger to high concept science fiction and she spoke about how Ant-Man and the Wasp presages the shape of things to come:
We are hitting that [Lost] Season 4 space where everything's about to shift, and you're about to lose the solid ground underneath you. And [Ant-Man and the Wasp], of course, will play a part in that. Those characters are experts in the Quantum Realm. In Ant-Man and the Wasp, they are trying everything in their power to safely enter the Quantum Realm and return back from it because they have evidence from the first film that Scott Lang was able to do that. If he can do it, why can't we? If we do succeed in Ant-Man and the Wasp, then that does open a whole entire new multi-verse to enter into and play around in. I'm not the story creator, so I can't tell you what they're going to do with that. But I definitely see the potential there.
It is suspected that Ant-Man and the Wasp will involve the search and rescue of Janet van Dyne from the Quantum Realm. Although it was believed that the Quantum Realm was a dimension from whose bourn no traveler returns, Scott Lang proved that wrong in Ant-Man. Once you know how to get in and out, this certainly changes the rules of what is and isn't possible going forward. Guardian's of the Galaxy opened up the cosmos, Doctor Strange introduced magic and the Astral Plane and Ant-Man and the Wasp will really delve into the Quantum Realm and alternate dimensions. Expanding the universe into the multiverse is a huge step that would be well-earned, thanks to the carefully planned out groundwork they have laid, since 2008.
As Evangeline Lilly states in the Vanity Fair article, this is very similar to how Lost changed the rules and expanded it's narrative when the flash-forwards were introduced and when time travel became part of the world. Losing a sense of stability and familiarity in the Marvel Universe as everything shifts will make for some really interesting storytelling opportunities that keep things fresh and exciting for all of the films and phases to come. We'll let you know how the new movie plays out when Ant-Man and the Wasp finally comes out.
Ant-Man and the Wasp arrives in theaters on July, 6 2018. Check out our 2018 release schedule for all the biggest movies coming out next year.