One of the more outlandish subplots in Iron Man 3 saw President Matthew Ellis kidnapped by the Mandarin (who not to mention also obliterated Air Force One). Ellis was played by William Sadler, and though he briefly reprised the role in Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., to date, Iron Man 3 his only movie appearance in the MCU.
However, that single performance came close to becoming two. Sadler has disclosed that he almost made a surprising cameo as President Ellis in Ant-Man, but the scene didn’t make the final cut. This is what he told David Thompson and Thomas Carter on the Lights, Thunder, Action! podcast, saying:
“I actually shot a thing for Ant-Man. I shot a bit of President Matthew Ellis for Ant-Man but they decided to use a different President, I don’t know. It was pretty silly.”
Sadler mentions that he was replaced by a different actor for the “President” scene. Curiously however, no President, nor any other political character made an appearance in Ant-Man. To give him the benefit of the doubt, it’s possible Marvel did intend to bring in someone else for the scene, but ultimately decided to do away with it altogether. Or perhaps they did go as far as filming it with someone else.
Whatever went on behind the scenes, it’s elementary as far as the result is concerned. The Ant-Man presidential scene never made it to our screens. Looks like President Ellis will go down as a footnote in Marvel history – a rare time the franchise strayed anywhere near politics. Not that it actually had anything to say about politics. Rather, President Ellis’ kidnapping was window-dressing for a high-stakes plot.
Got any thoughts on this Ant-Man cameo/Easter egg that never was? Drop a comment below. After all, there might be fans (somewhere) who wished Marvel had taken the franchise in a more political direction.