Nearly 13 months after it was first revealed that Paul Rudd would suit up in Ant-Man, a two-minute teaser trailer is offering the first real look at Marvel’s microscopic superhero. Presented as a heist film packaged within a superhero saga, the Ant-Man clip also showcases some of the humor you’d expect from a movie starring Rudd.
In the film, Rudd portrays Scott Lang, a small-time thief who’s recruited by Michael Douglas’ Dr. Henry Pym to “become the hero” and “be the Ant-Man;” Pym himself creates the technology but is too old to wear the suit. The teaser also provides quick looks at Evangeline Lilly’s Hope Van Dyne, Pym’s daughter, as well as Corey Stoll’s Darren Cross, the film’s antagonist who will use Pym’s technology to create the Yellowjacket suit.
Fans of the comic book were concerned about Ant-Man given that Scott Pilgrim Vs. the World director Edgar Wright, who was on board to helm Ant-Man and co-wrote the story with Attack the Block‘s Joe Cornish, parted ways with the action film just weeks before it went into production. That left Marvel scrambling to quickly find a new director as well as a screenwriter who could better tie Ant-Man into the overarching Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Peyton Reed eventually was hired to direct the film with the screenplay getting a touch-up from Anchorman director and onetime Saturday Night Live head writer Adam McKay. While Reed doesn’t tout the cool factor that Wright, Avengers director Joss Whedon or Guardians of the Galaxy director James Gunn bring to a project, the teaser suggests Reed has done a more than capable job keeping Ant-Man in line with Marvel’s vision.
Given the subject matter, it’s impossible for the film to avoid Honey, I Shrunk the Kids comparisons, especially when the Ant-Man takes a flying insect for a ride. However, the teaser proves that Rudd’s involvement was one of Marvel’s boldest casting moves yet, and why Ant-Man remains one of Rolling Stone‘s 68 reasons why 2015 will rule. The movie will hit theaters on July 17th.
Although Wright exited Ant-Man right before it went into production, the teaser trailer still spotlights some of the self-awareness that’s a trademark of the Shaun of the Dead director’s work. In a Marvel Universe with cool-sounding superheroers like Spider-Man, the Incredible Hulk, and Captain America, Rudd’s Lang asks Douglas’ Pym of the Ant-Man moniker, “One question: Is it too late to change the name?”