Rumored for the past two months, Paul Rudd is now officially the title character in Marvel’s ANT-MAN. Rudd was originally reported to be a finalist for the role along with Joseph Gordon-Levitt, but based on Gordon-Levitt’s immediate denial of the report and what Marvel is saying today, Rudd has been director Edgar Wright’s first choice all along. In the official announcement from Marvel, President of Production Kevin Feige shed some light on how Rudd became a part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe:
When Edgar Wright came to us with the idea of Paul Rudd, we felt a huge sense of relief because the first step in creating any Marvel Studios film is finding the right star. We knew early on that we had found the right person in Paul. When he not only agreed to do it but became as enthusiastic as any actor we’d ever met with about doing the work, we knew we’d found the right guy. We couldn’t be more excited for our audiences to see what he’s going to do to bring Ant-Man to life.
Paul Rudd’s comedic talent is certainly going to be a good fit for Edgar Wright. There is an inherent sense levity that comes with the concept of a hero whose signature ability is shrinking to the size of an ant. The trick will be to make sure any and all humor comes naturally from the characters and story rather than having Rudd be overly zany to the point where he’s shouting at the audience that he knows how ridiculous he is being. Wright and Rudd will most likely avoid that potential land mine.
It is worth nothing that Marvel Studios has yet to miss on casting the lead role in any of its films. Rudd is a fine actor with more range than he gets credit for having and the fact that both Marvel and Wright were able to agree on him as the ideal fit for their film so early on is a wonderful sign. Their faith in Rudd is sure to be validated when ANT-MAN hits theaters on July 31, 2015.