Paul Rudd says ‘Quantumania’ was influenced by one of the MCU’s most beloved sequels

Scott, Cassie, and Hope Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania
Image via Marvel Studios

We’re just weeks away from the Marvel Cinematic Universe‘s explosive start to Phase Five with Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania, which could kick off one of the best eras of the MCU yet; after Marvel Studios took a good, hard look at how Phase Four turned out (divisive would be the best word, perhaps), it’s ready to put everyone’s nose to the grindstone as they prepare for a “quality-over-quantity” approach that the likes of 2021 and 2022 arguably could have used more of.

That’s not the only departure that Quantumania is prophesizing. Where the first two Ant-Man films were some of the MCU’s lighter entries overall, Quantumania looks to be a fair bit heavier in terms of tone, bolstered in no small part by the menacing teases we’ve gotten of Jonathan Majors’ Kang the Conqueror. And with everyone all but preparing themselves for Scott Lang’s demise, this is one Ant-Man film we’ll have to keep our guard up for.

So it’s all the more surprising that such a dark Ant-Man film took inspiration from what was perhaps the most laugh-out-loud film that the entire MCU has to offer. Speaking to The Direct, Quantumania star Paul Rudd cited Taika Waititi’s Thor: Ragnarok as a key influence for Quantumania, noting how Ragnarok‘s lighter contrast with the previous two Thor films created a certain distinction that was begging to be subverted.

I really didn’t have time to do it, but we kept talking during the process. I kept thinking about ‘Thor: Ragnarok,’ where it was like, ‘Whoa, we can’t believe this is the third one, it seems so different.’ There was something appealing about doing something unexpected.

Indeed, we didn’t quite expect a Thor film to take on the form of Ragnarok back then, and Quantumania is certainly out of left field considering Ant-Man’s previous solo outings.

Whatever ingredients went into bringing this film to life, we have no doubt that it’s all going to pay off when Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania releases to theaters on Feb. 17.