Michael Douglas: film legend, Oscar winner, superhero? According to Variety, the actor has officially signed on to play scientist Hank Pym in Ant-Man, an upcoming movie based on the Marvel comic franchise.
In the comics, Pym became the original Ant-Man after creating the story's shape-shifting chemical, which allowed him to shrink down to the size of an ant. He then passed the torch to Scott Lang (Paul Rudd) after retiring. It's unclear exactly how Douglas and Rudd will share the Ant-Man handle in the film.
Douglas may seem like an unconventional choice for a superhero, but Ant-Man is not headed in a typical action-film direction, clearly. The movie will be directed by comedy veteran Edgar Wright (Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz, The World's End) and already made a surprise first casting decision in Rudd (Anchorman 2, This Is 40). Rudd has been involved with the project since December, though he was originally attached to Douglas' character, Pym.
"With Hank Pym's rich history in the Marvel Universe, we knew we needed an actor capable of bringing the weight and stature to the role that the character deserves," Marvel president Kevin Feige said in a statement. "We felt incredibly relieved when Michael Douglas agreed to step into the part with the charm and fortitude he brings to every character he inhabits, and couldn't be more excited to see what he will do to bring Hank Pym to life."
The new year has been kind to Douglas thus far. At last night's Golden Globes ceremony, he took home Best Actor in a Mini-Series or TV Movie for his acclaimed performance as Liberace in Behind the Candelabra.