Although it’s a long way off, a little bit of information has begun to circulate about Marvel’s Ant-Man and the Wasp.
We have a poster, a cast list, and a plot summary that basically gives the whole thing away:
Ant-Man joins forces with the Wasp on an urgent new mission to uncover secrets from the past.
Might as well not see it, now. 😉
So how much can you really learn about the film from these tiny scraps of information? Quite a bit, actually.
The Wasp Is in It. No, Not Her — The Other One.
Marvel fans have been looking forward to seeing Evangeline Lilly’s Hope Van Dyne suit up as the Wasp ever since they saw that suit in the post-credits scene. (And we’re looking forward to it even more now that Lilly bought us tickets to the gun show.) And we’re getting Evangeline Lilly. … plus one more.
The cast list has been posted to IMDB, and fans quickly spotted another character name in the credits: Janet Van Dyne — the wife of Hank Pym and the original Wasp. In the comics Janet was every bit the hero that Hank was and a founding Avenger.
Newcomer Hayley Lovitt briefly played a fully-helmeted Janet Van Dyne during a flashback in 2105’s Ant-Man , where it was revealed that she had vanished into the mysterious “Quantum Realm” while helping to disable a Soviet nuke decades earlier. Michael Douglas’s Pym was still searching for her.
Evidently, in this movie, he finds her. Michelle Pfeiffer has been cast as Janet. The fact that she’s age-appropriate for Douglas means it is not a flashback.
Big Things Are Coming
Moving down the cast list we see Laurence Fishburne has been cast as Dr. Bill Foster / Goliath. In the comics, Foster started as a research assistant for Hank Pym, before branching out and becoming a brilliant scientist in his own right.
He managed to memorize the complex “Pym Particle” formula and duplicated it, occasionally using it to become the superhero Black Goliath. (Later, just plain “Goliath.”). Goliath played a small but pivotal role in the comic book version of Civil War.
The fact that the character is listed in the credits as “Goliath” means we’re going to get not one, but two “Giant Men” in this movie.The list of Pym-powered heroes keeps growing.
Shades of Villains Past
Although Hank Pym regained control of his company from the evil Yellowjacket a.k.a. Darren Cross at the end of the first Ant-Man, we may not be done with Cross Industries just yet. Veteran character actor Walton Goggins has been cast as Sonny Burch.
In the comics, Burch was the chairman of Cross Industries. He stole other people’s technology (often Tony Stark’s) in an attempt to replace Stark as the government’s primary weapons supplier. Unlike Cross, Burch does not have suit that grants him special abilities, so that means he’ll need someone else to do the dirty work. Someone like…
Ghost in the Machine
Hannah John-Kamen (Ready Player One, Tomb Raider) is playing a character only known as “Ghost.” In the comics, Ghost is a longtime Iron Man villain who has a hi-tech suit which can make him intangible or invisible — but not both at the same time.
He works as an industrial spy and thief and has attempted to steal Iron Man technology and prototypes multiple times — often succeeding.
We are guessing that this new female Ghost will fill that same role for Pym Technologies — attempting to steal the secrets of the Pym Particles that make Ant-Man, Giant Man, Goliath and the Wasp all possible.
So while the last movie saw Ant-Man breaking into Pym Technologies to steal the Yellowjacket suit, this time “Team Ant-Man and Wasp” might be playing defense, trying to stop a thief from stealing industrial secrets.
It Resurrects an Awesome-But-Obscure Asian Character
Randall Park is listed in the cast as Jimmy Woo, a character that predates the Marvel Universe. Woo was created by Atlas Comics (which would later become Marvel) as an FBI agent who was fighting the evil, communist, walking-offensive-racial-stereotype “Yellow Claw” in the 1956 series of the same name.
Woo was one of the first Chinese comic heroes, and unlike “Yellow Claw,” he was refreshingly not founded on a grab-bag of Asian stereotypes like Fu Manchu, martial arts or Chinese mysticism. He was just an uber-competent special agent.
Woo disappeared for more than a decade, but he was resurrected an agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. for Marvel in 1968 and has made sporadic appearances in Marvel Comics ever since, culminating in the critically acclaimed series Agents of Atlas, which saw him lead a team of other forgotten Atlas Comics heroes in the early 2000s.
Randall Park (Fresh Off the Boat, The Interview) is playing Woo in the movie. We’re betting that it will be a small part, but if he ended up becoming the new “Coulson” for the MCU, that would make us very happy indeed.
We are reasonably sure that most of this is accurate, and almost positive that at least some of it will turn out to be way off-base — but it’s a fun mental exercise and a way to start getting the hype engine going for what we hope will be a fantastic movie.
Ant-Man and the Wasp hits theaters on July 6, 2018.