As announced Friday, the screenplay for “Ant-Man 3,” the latest sequel in the Marvel Cinematic Universe franchise, will be written by “Rick and Morty” writer Jeff Loveness. Peyton Reed, as previously announced, is returning to direct. Deadline reported that the duo had signed onto the project, which will also see Paul Rudd and Evangeline Lilly reprise their roles as Scott Lang/Ant-Man and Hope van Dyne/The Wasp from the first two “Ant-Man” films.
Loveness’ attachment to the project is the latest news to come out of “Ant-Man 3” working title since the film was confirmed to be in the works by Deadline in October 2019. There's no word yet on when the film will enter production, nor is there any information about its release date.
Regardless, diehard Marvel Cinematic Universe fans pining for the next “Ant-Man” installment will likely have to be patient. Marvel has already announced its now-shifted Phase Four slate, which will kick off with “Black Widow” on November 6, followed by “The Eternals” on February 12, 2021. “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Seven Rings” will debut on May 7, 2021, while “Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness” will release on November 5, 2021. “Thor: Love and Thunder” will hit theaters on February 18, 2022. All of the aforementioned films' release dates were updated earlier today as part of Disney's response to the current global heh crisis.
Loveness, who confirmed the news on Twitter, is no stranger to Marvel: He's worked on a variety of comics for the company, including several that are focused on Spider-Man and boundlessly heroic space tree Groot. He has also worked on “Jimmy Kimmel Live!” and TBS' “Miracle Workers.”
Reed directed the first “Ant-Man” film, released in 2015, and its sequel, 2018's “Ant-Man and the Wasp.”
While the Marvel Cinematic Universe franchise began embracing the more surreal, galaxy-trekking elements of Marvel comics lore in recent films, the “Ant-Man” films have centered on the titular protagonist's comparably small-scale and relatable misadventures. Ant-Man played a key role in last year's “Avengers: Endgame,” where the superhero revealed a sci-fi MacGuffin that allowed the Avengers to travel back in time and undo the work of the genocidal Thanos.
IndieWire has reached out to Marvel Studios for comment.
Marvel Studios has tapped Rick and Morty writer Jeff Loveness to pen the Ant-Man 3 script. Peyton Reed is returning to direct the sequel after helming the first two installments. Paul Rudd is expected to return as Scott Lang, along with Evangeline Lilly and Michael Pena. Marvel Studios has yet to officially announce the project and it was not included in the latest MCU release dates that were revealed earlier today. With that being said, Ant-Man 3 more than likely will not hit theaters until sometime in 2023.
Jeff Loveness is arguably best-known as a writer/co-producer on Cartoon Network's Rick and Morty. He has a comic book background having written for Spider-Man, Groot, Nova, and other Marvel characters. Loveness got his start writing on Jimmy Kimmel Live! and has also worked on the Academy Awards, the Emmys and the White House Correspondents' Dinner. Additionally, he contributed to TBS' Miracle Workers, which Daniel Radcliffe stars in. It is believed that the deal between Loveness and Marvel Studios was inked before the entertainment business shut down.
While a 2023 release date seems plausible for Ant-Man 3, there are a few open slots in the Marvel Cinematic Universe release calendar. October 7th, 2022 is the next available date and if all goes well, the movie could make it in time. It seems doubtful that Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 will be ready by that time. Marvel Studios and Sony currently do not have a release date for Spider-Man 3, so that could very well fit into that slot too, though that is pure speculation at this point in time.
Scott Lang sat out of Infinity War, along with Clint Barton. However, both characters came back in a major way for Avengers: Endgame. Lang, specifically, was the one responsible for bringing Pym Particles into the picture to get the time heist off the ground. If it weren't for Lang, there would not have been a movie. Paul Rudd's portrayal of Lang also provided some comic relief during the heavy movie, which was much-needed. With that being said, it's unclear where Ant-Man 3 will go in terms of storyline.
There have been plenty of rumors suggesting that Scott Lang's daughter Cassie, could have a bigger role in Ant-Man 3. Cassie is known in the comic books as Stinger. She's a member of the Young Avengers and The Initiative, and also has the same powers as her father. Cassie manifested her powers much later than her first exposure to Pym Particles, unlike her father. 18-year old actress Emma Fuhrmann played the character in Avengers: Endgame and it's believed she will be a part of the sequel, though it's unknown if she will be introduced as Stinger on the big screen. The Hollywood Reporter was the first to announce that Jeff Loveness will be writing Ant-Man 3.