After the disappointing news that Edgar Wright (“Shaun of the Dead”) is no longer directing “Ant-Man” for Marvel Studios, everyone’s been curious about who’s going to take over as director. I advocated in my editorial that Phil Lord and Chris Miller (“The Lego Movie”) would be the best choices to direct. Well, it’s looking like that’s out of the question as reports are coming in that three other directors are being looked at for the directors chair.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, “Sources say Rawson Thurber, Adam McKay and Ruben Fleischer are among a group of directors that are meeting with the studio to replace Edgar Wright, who abruptly exited the long-gestating project last week over creative differences.”
So it’s clear that Kevin Feige over at Marvel is looking for a director who’s well-versed in comedy with these three choices. However, I’m not sure that any of these directors are good fits for the job. All have done solid films in the past, McKay and Fleischer in particular, but I don’t think they can tackle a major multi-million dollar project like this, especially after such an inspired choice like Edgar Wright.
Thurber is coming hot off the success of last year’s surprise hit, “We’re the Millers.” Even with the mixed reactions it received from critics, I thought it was a funny and entertaining comedy. I was also a fan of “Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story.” The problem is that with both of those films, they began to lose steam whenever action scenes were being thrown in. They felt out of place and inconsistent with the tone of the rest of the film. With a property like “Ant-Man,” the director needs to be able to have a consistent tone between the action and comedy.
Fleischer broke into Hollywood’s radar with 2009’s “Zombieland,” which was beloved by critics and audiences alike, myself included. That film showed his capabilities as both a comedic and action director. It was exciting, hilarious, and full of creativity. All qualities that would work for an “Ant-Man” film. So why is he not a good choice? Well . . . he hasn’t done a good movie since. “30 Minutes or Less” was a really disappointing comedy void of laughs or entertainment and last year’s “Gangster Squad” was just a bland, lifeless mobster movie. Sure, his style of direction has stayed consistently inventive, but I’m not sure if I can be on board with him as director considering he might have just been a one hit wonder.
McKay is probably the best name out of the three. He’s had great experience doing comedies like the “Anchorman” films and “Step Brothers” and has a pretty good eye for action with films like “The Other Guys.” I’m just not sure if his tone would fit in with the one already established in past Marvel films. The comedic style McKay brought to “Step Brothers” is very different to the style of comedy seen in “The Avengers” or “Iron Man.”
What do you guys think of these choices? Do you agree with me that none of them really fit or do you think any of them are capable of tackling this project? Comment below or vote in the poll below on which director you’d prefer to take on “Ant-Man” (I added Phil Lord and Chris Miller to the poll).
“Ant-Man” is scheduled for release on July 17, 2015.
Thank you guys so much for reading and, as always, “Follow the Screen, Scene X Scene!”