‘Anchorman’ Director Adam McKay Squashes ‘Ant-Man’ Rumors
If you snagged even the briefest of peeks at Twitter this weekend, you probably saw one, or two, or 200 tweets about Ant-Man, the Marvel movie that is very quickly devolving into a melodramatic pre-production nightmare. Visionary director Edgar Wright left the film last week after seven years of writing, cogitating, and planning — the film, in all likelihood, wouldn’t exist without Wright’s persistence, and the idea of any other filmmaker behind the helm of a Paul Rudd-starring superhero vehicle seems preposterous. Now, after a few tense-dense blogosphere think pieces, bromance pioneer Adam McKay (Anchorman, Step Brothers) has stepped away from the project. He announced this via Twitter, of course:
And yes, met w/Marvel. Kirby & Lee r my Lennon Mccartney so it was awesome. But have other projects I’m committed to. Not sure it can work.
— Adam McKay (@GhostPanther) May 31, 2014
McKay is best known for engendering the proliferation of bro comedies –in which schlubby, sweaty men who are far from conventionally sexy do silly and irreverent things together while forming deep friendships — in the mid-aughts. Will Ferrell and John C. Reilly found great success with McKay, even though both had prosperous careers before McKay catapulted them into stardom. (Ferrell was integral to Saturday Night Live’s resurgence, and Reilly was actually a very reliable dramatic character actor, adding average Joe flair to Paul Thomas Anderson’s Hard Eight and Magnolia.)
Edgar Wright, whose Three Flavours Cornetto Trilogy is a masterclass in acerbic, intelligent comedy for adults, reportedly clashed with Marvel studio heads over creative direction of Ant-Man. Wright is known for hyper-active, precise, extremely keen humor with fast, rhythmic dialog between characters and abrupt quick-cuts.
Ant-Man, a superhero who can get really tiny and control ants, would have been a perfect match for Edgar Wright, who very likely wouldn’t make a straightforward superhero movie. His brilliant Hot Fuzz managed to mix adrenaline-pumping action with hysterics and comedy in a way that most films can’t. McKay is not known for action, and it’s hard to picture what his version of Ant-Man might look like. Or what, exactly, Ant-Man would do with his power.