Ant-Man Director Explains Why He Wanted Quantumania To Be So Much Bigger Than The Previous Two Movies

Ant-Man and The Wasp together in the Quantumania trailer
(Image credit: Marvel Studios)

The Marvel Cinematic Universe is a behemoth place, with various franchises filling out their own corners of the property. The next highly anticipated upcoming Marvel movie hitting theaters will be Peyton Reed’s Ant-Man and The Wasp: Quantumania, which looks like a blockbuster with a truly epic scale. And the director recently explained why he wanted the threequel to be so much bigger than the previous two movies. Good thing Scott has Giant Man abilities.

All three of the Ant-Man movies were helmed by Peyton Reed, so he definitely knows the Paul Rudd-led franchise well. But the footage of Quantumania looks way crazier than the first two movies, while also introducing the MCU’s next big bad in the form of Jonathan Majors’ Kang the Conqueror. Reed recently spoke to EW about the upcoming blockbuster, where he explained why he wanted to raise the stakes of his third Marvel installment. In his words,

People felt like, Oh, these are fun little palate cleansers after a gigantic Avengers movie. For this third one, I said, 'I don't want to be the palate cleanser anymore. I want to be the big Avengers movie.'

Touche. The first two Ant-Man movies were definitely lighter fare, but that doesn’t appear to be the case with Quantumania. And that’s by design by the franchise’s director, who was ready to step out of the sidelines with his acclaimed property. We’ll just have to wait and see what twists he’s got up his sleeve when the movie arrives in February.

Peyton Reed’s comments will no doubt ring true for hardcore Marvel fans who see every new movie in theaters. The first Ant-Man movie was the final installment of Phase Two, following the explosive events of Avengers: Age of Ultron. Meanwhile, the sequel Ant-Man and The Wasp was the first movie to follow Avengers: Infinity War, and Thanos’ snap. Now it looks like Reed is ready to direct the next big movie, rather than simply follow it.

Later in that same interview, Peyton Reed further explained how he leaned into the concept of the Quantum Realm in Ant-Man 3. That setting is still such a mysterious place, and one that we’ll finally dive deep into for the aptly named sequel Ant-Man and The Wasp: Quantumania. He shared why this was an exciting change, saying:

In the first one, we introduced the idea of the Quantum Realm, we kind of dipped our toe into it, and then even more so in the second one. But we obviously left a lot of unanswered questions. We wanted to go in a different direction, and create an epic movie where the bulk of it takes place in the Quantum Realm. For me, it was really exciting, because the other two films take place in San Francisco, and this one, we were creating this incredibly complex subatomic world, and all the environments and ecosystems and creatures and beings that inhabit that world.

Sign me up. It looks like the Marvel fandom’s various questions about the Quantum Realm might just be answered in Ant-Man 3. This includes learning more about what happened when Michelle Pfeiffer’s Janet Van Dyne spent years in the subatomic setting. As a reminder, you can check out the trailer for the movie below: 

The stakes certainly feel high, especially because Ant-Man doesn’t seem nearly powerful enough to take on a foe like Kang the Conqueror (unless he goes with that viral butt strategy). This limited footage shows him looking pretty beat up, although he’s got support in the form of The Wasp as well as his daughter Cassie. Let’s just hope the full cast survives this upcoming adventure.

Ant-Man and The Wasp: Quantumania will arrive in theaters on February 17th. In the meantime, check out the 2023 movie release dates to plan your trips to the theater in the New Year. And it sounds like the upcoming movie will have a major effect on the shared universe as a whole. 

Corey Chichizola
Movies Editor

Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Graduated with degrees theater and literature from Ramapo College of New Jersey. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBlend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his favorite actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid. He's particularly proud of covering horror franchises like Scream and Halloween, as well as movie musicals like West Side Story. Favorite interviews include Steven Spielberg, Spike Lee, Jamie Lee Curtis, and more.