Heads up: if you haven’t seen Ant-Man and consider stuff that happens in the first scene spoilers, now would be a great time to click the back button on your browser. For those of you who have seen Ant-Man, you may have found the opening scene a bit dry, so it’s interesting to learn that the film was originally planned to kick off in a much different way.
As it stands, Ant-Man opens with Hank Pym’s (Michael Douglas) feisty resignation from S.H.I.E.L.D., and while there are more punches thrown than your standard corporate departure, the scene originally would have been an action-packed standalone sequence in the vein of the James Bond films. Director Peyton Reed described the original sequence while speaking with Cinemablend.
It was basically a standalone sequence where you really did not see it was Hank Pym. He was retrieving some microfilm from this, originally Cuban general and then it because a Panamanian general… It really was designed in those early drafts to be almost like a Bond movie standalone scene in the beginning. It was going to show the powers. You never saw Ant-Man, it almost felt like an Invisible Man sequence, and it’s really, really cool.
Eventually the scene was scrapped because it felt “tonally disconnected” from the film and didn’t connect with the larger story. However, they did shoot the scene, and it sounds like it would be a perfect return to form for the Marvel One-Shots, which MCU mastermind Kevin Feige recently told Steve he’d love to see make a comeback.
We actually ended up shooting that sequence and cut it together and it’s fantastic, but the more we got into editing, it just felt too disconnected to the rest of the movie. It felt like vestige of those earlier drafts, which as a standalone thing was really cool. We actually talked at one point about releasing like a standalone, Hank Pym as Ant-Man. Who knows if that will still happen.
While I’m quite fond of Ant-Man, the opening is a bit stilted so I would have loved to see the film kick off with a more instantly engaging action-heavy beat. And Scott Lang may be the hero, but in truth, Hank Pym owns Ant-Man so it would have been cool to see a little more of him in action. However, I’ve watched enough “extended cuts” to believe a filmmaker when they say something didn’t work in the editing room. Fortunately, the scene is in the can, so hopefully it will surface on the Blu-ray, or at least on the recently announced Phase Two Blu-ray Collection.
What say you? Would you have preferred that Reed keep the originally scripted opening scene? Or do you like what we ended up with? Sound off in the comments.