Annlyel explores why Ant-Man and the Wasp are set to be sidelined in Marvel’s Phase 4
With Avengers: Endgame bringing about the end of an era it almost seemed like, “What’s Marvel going to do now?” Then they assured us that there would be much more to enjoy in the coming years with a brand new sleight of heroes announced for Phase 4; The Eternals, Shang-Chi, Hawkeye, Ms. Marvel, She-Hulk, Moon Knight, Blade, the Fantastic Four, and the X-Men. It’s mind-boggling to think about and it’s very easy to get caught up in the Marvel Studios fireworks display of awesomeness but then, once our excitement begins to simmer, we begin to remember the characters that have already been established in the MCU that isn’t getting as much love for the future. Two such heroes are Ant-Man and the Wasp.
When Ant-Man arrived in 2015 it was met with mediocre praise. While some enjoyed it for its lighter tones and its introduction to the tiny but mighty hero, Ant-Man and the lovable Paul Rudd who portrayed him, others found the film to be one of the MCU’s weakest entries. On top of that, it only made $519 million at the global box-office. That’s quite a step down from Avengers: Age of Ultron ($1.43 billion), Guardians of the Galaxy ($773 million), Captain America: The Winter Soldier ($714 million), and even the dismal Thor: The Dark World ($644 million.)
Ant-Man is a fun character but he doesn’t drive people to the movie theaters. Three years later, we get Ant-Man and the Wasp, the first Marvel film to feature a female hero in the title, and yet even that couldn’t drive people to the movie theaters. It’s IMDb score is 7.1 out of 10 stars, which is 0.2 stars less than Ant-Man on IMDb and while it made more money than its predecessor with $622 million it was still a great chunk less than Avengers: Infinity War‘s $2.048 billion! or Black Panther‘s $1.347 billion. And when it comes to Disney and their decision-making for the future, they look at dollar bills before all else and the world has spoken; we like Ant-Man and his female co-Avenger, Wasp, but we don’t rush to the movie theaters to see them.
Because of this, the third Ant-Man has been put on pause indefinitely and it’s very possible that we may not get a third Ant-Man movie after all. Now, don’t let this bring your day down because Disney has perfectly set up a template for smaller heroes to get their due in big ways. Meaning, it’s very likely that we’ll see Ant-Man and the Wasp starring in a big-time movie-style event on Disney+. And honestly, that might be better for the two heroes. A six-episode story featuring the heroic duo could give greater depth to their personal stories and could establish a darker villain that’ll finally add some seriousness to the Ant-Man franchise.
All in all, don’t expect to hear anything about Ant-Man and the Wasp’s future in the MCU anytime soon.
The Future of the Force. The future of pop culture writing.
Annlyel James is a prolific Staff Writer for Future of the Force. She is passionate about Star Wars and Marvel but loves a wide variety of movie genres. Follow her on Twitter @annlyeljames where she channels the Force frequently!