Paul Rudd was excited when Edgar Wright cast him to play the titular character in the upcoming Ant-Man film. Wright, famous for British comedies (generally starring Simin Pegg) such as Sean of the Dead and The World’s End had championed the project and crafted a script with collaborator Joe Cornish. Then it all went a haywire.
Before Rudd got to the wrap of , he’d see Wright bolt, his friend and Anchorman helmer, Adam Wright flirt and pass, only to wind up with Peyton Reed; the director of Bring It On!
The loss of Wright came as a particular blow to Rudd. The Wet Hot American Summer actor is a longtime friend of Wright, and it was the British director who had cast him in the role of Scott Lang, an ex-con who becomes the film’s titular, shrinking, ant-controlling superhero.
“It all happened pretty quickly,” says Rudd. “Edgar called me, and then it was just out in all the trades. It was a bit of a whirlwind, to say the least.” Was the actor tempted to follow his friend out the door? “Well, I mean, there are lots of things that go through your mind,” he says. “There are certain things I can and can’t do, and then there also certain things I will and won’t say. But I was devastated, you know.”
But Rudd rolled with the punches, provided continuity to the project, and (based on the trailer) has made a compelling film.
All hail, Kevin Fiege!