After being notably absent from Avengers: Infinity War, Scott Lang’s Ant-Man went on to be one of the key drivers of the plot of Endgame. Large parts of the film were told from his perspective, he provided many of the funniest moments and it was his return that gave the surviving heroes an idea of how to reverse Thanos’ snap. Despite that, don’t expect to see Paul Rudd and Evangeline Lilly’s Ant-Man and the Wasp back on screens anytime soon.
The news comes courtesy of TheMarvelScoopMaster on Reddit, who recently posted a convincing looking breakdown of Marvel Studios’ slate for the next few years. Their information, which has been verified by the mods, fits with everything we’ve seen and heard about the studio’s future direction, so right now, I don’t see any reason to doubt them.
When one fan pointed out that our pint-sized heroes were noticeably absent from the list, TheMarvelScoopMaster’s response was that in the wake of Endgame, acquiring the Fox characters and their desire to launch new IP like The Eternals and Shang-Chi, Marvel Studios were inevitably going to have to ‘shelve’ some characters, and Ant-Man and the Wasp (and presumably their supporting cast) are on the chopping block. One commenter wondered whether this meant that they’d still appear in other MCU movies, and while a few cameos do seem possible, TheMarvelScoopMaster says we should only expect to see them “in a diminished capacity” for the next little while.
Though unfortunate, this news doesn’t come as a huge surprise. After all, both Ant-Man and Ant-Man and the Wasp are relatively low-grossing films by the standards of the MCU, and neither of them are particularly memorable (though they’re far from bad movies).
Still, as Endgame proved, Paul Rudd is excellent both at dramatic and comedic moments, so while I’m sure the Marvel Cinematic Universe will survive without him, it’s definitely a notable loss. Plus, this probably means no more amazing Michael Pena-narrated flashbacks, and that’s perhaps the greatest shame of all.