After about two weeks of a slow-motion train-wreck, it looks like Marvel has finally found a new director for Ant-Man. But you’re probably not going to be too thrilled with the choice.
Marvel has announced that Peyton Reed is stepping in to fill the vacancy left by Edgar Wright and Adam McKay and the countless others who almost had the job but didn’t for one reason or another.
Reed is best known for some pretty terrible comedies – The Break Up, Down With Love, Yes Man – but he also has an excellent record of TV work – Mr Show, Upright Citizens Brigade, The Weird Al Show. He’s never directed any kind of action before, but if he still has any of the weird fun and energy he used to exhibit when he was working in TV left, he might be able to do something interesting. I say “might,” but his film career speaks to something less than promising.
Anchorman writer Adam McKay, despite passing on directing the film, is going to stay on to take another crack at the script. The last draft is what sent Wright packing, as it was that last step too far from the version of the film he had signed on to make.
Ant-Man is still set for a July 2015 release and has to start filming this summer to make it. Does anyone at this point think there’s enough time to save this thing?
There’s an interesting coincidence in choosing Reed for the director’s chair. He was, at one point, set to direct the Fantastic Four movie before he (like Wright on Ant-Man) left over “creative differences.” His Fantastic Four would have shown the team as celebrity superheroes and taken cues from the Beatles film A Hard Day’s Night. You can still see very small glimmers of that in the film Tim Story made (mostly in Johnny).