Edgar Wright explains why 'Ant-Man' won't include Ultron
The "Age of Ultron" is coming in "The Avengers 2," not in "Ant-Man." Though in the Marvel Comics Ant-Man is the creator of Ultron, their storylines won't cross in the Marvel Cinematic Universe: Phase Two -- at least, that's what director Edgar Wright says.
In an interview with The Huffington Post to promote his new movie "The World's End," Wright opens up about why he decided not to put Ultron into his "Ant-Man" adaptation. According to him, it's because he wants to keep the focus on main character Hank Pym.
"[Ultron] was never in my script. Because even just to sort of set up what Ant-Man does is enough for one movie," Wright says. "It's why I think 'Iron Man' is extremely successful because it keeps it really simple. You have one sort of -- the villain comes from the hero's technology. It's simple. So I think why that film really works and why, sometimes, superhero films fail -- or they have mixed results -- because they have to set up a hero and a villain at the same time. And that's really tough. And sometimes it's unbalanced."
He continues, "You know, when I was younger I used to love Tim Burton's "Batman." I was like 15 and even then I was aware, 'This is really the Joker's film.' It's like, the Joker just takes over and Batman, you really don't learn too much about him. Comics have years to explain this stuff and in a movie you have to focus on one thing. So it's about kind of streamlining, I think. Some of the most successful origin films actually have a narrower focus. You cannot put 50 years of the Marvel universe into a movie. It's impossible."
That's part of the reason he's excited about tackling a lesser-known Marvel character like Ant-Man. Wright is not as concerned about people criticizing his portrayal of the character because there are so many people who don't know who Hank Pym is.
"I think there's something in that it's a lesser known character, there's hopefully more license. For the one percent of people who are like, 'Wait, Hank Pym would never do that!' there's 99 percent going, 'Who's Hank Pym?'" Wright says. "To me, the source material is great but it also frees you up to be like: I'm going to make a movie. The movie is not going to represent 50 years of Marvel comics because that's impossible. But I'm going to make a 100 minute movie -- or 110 minutes."
Joss Whedon echoed similar sentiments recently about why "The Avengers: Age of Ultron" doesn't need Hank Pym to make Ultron work. "We don't have to have him. It works very simply -- this is Marvel cinema, not Marvel comics," he told io9. "One thing [Marvel Studios head] Kevin Feige has a genius for is knowing what to hold onto and what to let go of. You can invoke the feeling you had and play with the characters you love and remain true to the needs of the film."
"Ant-Man" is due in theaters on Nov. 6, 2015. "The World's End" comes out on Aug. 23.