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As speculation continues to swirl around the mystery of what Marvel movie will be released in May 2014 — here’s hoping that next month’s Comic-Con will provide some answers — Edgar Wright just quietly wrapped production on Ant-Man.
But before you start hitting the tweet button, know this: it’s not the long-awaited Ant-Man movie but rather an Ant-Man test reel.
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Ant-Man is based on Marvel hero Hank Pym, a scientist who discovered a way to alter his size. He used a helmet to control armies of ants and also was a founding member of the Avengers. (Two other characters took up the mantle after Pym moved on — one a thief named Scott Lang and the other a sketchy SHIELD agent.)
Ant-Man, with Wright involved, was on the initial Marvel Studios slate that the company announced in the mid-2000s as it put Iron Man and The Incredible Hulk into development. But Ant-Man was then sidelined as the focus turned to the heroes that eventually ended up this summer’s Avengers.
Wright has focused on other projects in the meantime, but he also has spent time nailing the Ant-Man script, which he co-wrote with Joe Cornish.
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Then, in mid-June, he spent just under a week shooting footage for a reel that will be used to test out the potential look and tone of his movie, as well as to decide how convincing Ant-man’s powers look onscreen.
But even if it all passes muster, Ant-Man won’t be Wright’s next movie. That honor goes to The World’s End, a comedy that reteams him with Simon Pegg and Nick Frost and is slated to shoot this fall.
Test reels are not uncommon for certain projects, especially those that fall into the stylized or risky categories. Zack Snyder made one for 300, Jonathan Liebesman made one for Battle: Los Angeles, and Guillermo del Toro made one for At the Mountains of Madness. They are not widely circulated but gems to those who have seen them.
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