In 2015, the Marvel Cinematic Universe introduced audiences to Scott Lang (Paul Rudd), in Ant-Man. Directed by Peyton Reed, the movie went on to make over $500 million worldwide.
In the sequel Ant-Man and The Wasp, which opens on July 6th 2018, Scott is grappling with the consequences of his choices as both a Super Hero and father. He is confronted by Hope van Dyne, AKA the Wasp (Evangeline Lilly) and Dr Hank Pym (Michael Douglas) to once again don the Ant-Man suit to find and save Pym’s lost wife, Janet, portrayed by Michelle Pfeiffer.
Paul Rudd, Evangeline Lilly and Michael Douglas came to the Langham Hotel in Pasadena to meet with journalists and talk about the movie.
Ant Man and the Wasp – Cassie Lang (Abby Ryder Fortson) and Ant-Man/Scott Lang (Paul Rudd) ©2018 Marvel Studios, photo by Ben Rothstein

What did you look forward to doing the sequel?

Paul Rudd: One of the things that I really like about playing this character is that Scott is thrown into these extraordinary circumstances of shrinking and flying around on ants and dealing with life threatening situation. I’ve always tried to sustain his way of dealing with everything with a sense of humor and a carefree attitude. It think it gives audience a fun ride to see somebody like Scott Lang take in all of this craziness. So, for me, that’s fun to play.

Evangeline Lilly: I was excited to play Hope again for so many reason. In Ant-Man she went through this enormous emotional arc. So, it was exciting to have the change to go back to this character and play her in a new space. A space where she is more at ease in her own skin and more at ease in her relationship with her father.

Michael Douglas: The best part about returning for a sequel is the opportunity to again work with Peyton, Paul and Evangeline. There’s that feeling of familiarity that informs the filmmaking process. You also get to define your character more. Hank Pym is the straight man who keeps the story grounded.

Ant Man and the Wasp – The Wasp/Hope van Dyne (Evangeline Lilly) and Hank Pym (Michael Douglas) ©2018 Marvel Studios, photo by Ben Rothstein

You get to kick ass in this movie. What do you love about Hope and Wasp in this film?

Evangeline: I loved getting to be a Bladerunner. That was pretty cool. I love the kind of element of having somebody who’s completely in jeopardy, but also completely in control.

It was fun to finally get to see her take on the mantle. Because this is something that she’s been ready and willing to do, basically her whole life. Her parents are both superheroes and she was rearing to get in that suit for an entire film. And we never got there, and so to actually see her fighting in that moment was wonderful.

Can you talk about the decision not to make this Ant-Man 2? To make it Ant-Man and The Wasp?

Ant Man and the Wasp – Behind the scenes: The Wasp/Hope van Dyne (Evangeline Lilly) and Ant-Man/Scott Lang (Paul Rudd) on set. ©2018 Marvel Studios, photo by Ben Rothstein

Evangeline: Originally, Wasp was going to be introduced in Captain America: Civil War. Secretly I was like, ‘She’s not going to get an Origins film?’ Oh, well, it’s okay; I’m just stoked to be here, dude. I’m just happy that I get to put on a suit.

Then I got a call saying we’ve decided not to put you in Civil War. They said what I thought they were going to say, which is (they wanted) to dedicate a film to introducing this female superhero and (didn’t) want her just to be a side note in this larger story.

That was so exciting for me.

Ant Man and the Wasp – Behind the scenes: Michael Douglas (aka Hank Pym) on set ©2018 Marvel Studios, photo by Ben Rothstein

Michael, what was it like to see yourself digitally younger in this movie?

Michael: I looked pretty good, didn’t I? That was one of the nice parts. First of all, when we started this I discovered that Michelle Pfeiffer was going to be my wife. (I’ve been) such a tremendous fan of hers, never have had any chance to work with her. I was totally ecstatic. And then in reading the script to find out that Michelle Pfeiffer and I were going to be 30 years younger even made it all that much better.

Evangeline: And kissing.

Michael: It was a treat, and it remains to be seen where all of this can go.

Michael Douglas, Hannah John-Kamen and Paul Rudd speak onstage at Marvel Studios’ “Ant-Man And The Wasp” Global Junket Press Conference on June 24th, 2018 in Los Angeles, United States. ©2018 Marvel Studios, photo by Alberto E Rodriguez/Getty Images for Disney

Well, on that, Paul, you get to channel Michelle Pfeiffer in the movie – what was that like?

Paul: I feel like I’ve been doing that for years. Every time we would refer to that, we kept calling it the All Of Me sequence. It was surreal, to say the least. There are those moments as an actor, you have to buy into this scenario and you’re playing the truth of the moment.

But, at the same time, as me being me and Michael being Michael, when I had my hand tenderly to his cheek and I’m staring in (his) eyes, we giggled a couple of times.

Was Miss Pfeiffer on set that day, when you were doing that?

Paul: Oh, I would never have been able to do that with her there, absolutely not.

Michael Douglas, Hannah John-Kamen, Paul Rudd, Evangeline Lilly, Laurence Fishburne, Peyton Reed, Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige and Kara Warner speak onstage at Marvel Studios’ “Ant-Man And The Wasp” Global Junket Press Conference on June 24th, 2018 in Los Angeles, United States. ©2018 Marvel Studios, photo by Alberto E Rodriguez/Getty Images for Disney

Since Mr Rudd helped to write the first movie and now this movie… Do you all feel that he gave you guys as many good lines as he gave himself?

Michael:  No, he gave himself more funny lines. Let’s be honest.

Evangeline: His best lines in the movie are not in the script. (they laugh)

Paul: I try and think of the film as a whole. I think of every character. This has been a collaborative effort, more than anything I’ve ever worked on. To think that I actually wrote it would be, I think, a gross overstatement. The truth of the matter is, Peyton was in the room (and he) has been working on this for a long time.

Will there ever be a Wasp movie?

Evangeline: Gosh, I was asked this question prior to this movie. I used to say it would be fun to see the Wasp with the Hulk because she’d be so teeny and he’d be so giant, but then we did Giant Man, so that’s out.

I am personally going to continue to keep the rumor and gossip about an all-female Avengers film going until it happens.

Ant Man and the Wasp – Behind the scenes: Hank Pym (Michael Douglas) and Ant-Man/Scott Lang (Paul Rudd) on set. ©2018 Marvel Studios, photo by Ben Rothstein

Ant-Man and The Wasp Soundbyte

Director Peyton Reed and Paul Rudd talked about the movie being a sequel to both Ant-Man and Captain America: Civil War – click here to listen to their explanation.

Ant-Man and The Wasp Videobyte

And Evangeline Lilly explained quantum physics to us!

Judy Sloane

Judy is Film Review Online's regular Los Angeles based reporter. More by Judy Sloane