TIME Television

Marvel Will Release a New Netflix Show Every 6 Months

Barry Wetcher— Netflix, Inc. Charlie Cox as Matt Murdock in the Netflix Original Series “Marvel’s Daredevil”

Jessica Jones will premiere before the end of 2015

Though the next Marvel film, Captain America: Civil War, won’t premiere until May, more Marvel heroes are coming to your streaming queue—and soon. Netflix announced at the Television Critics Association summer meeting on Tuesday that it will be rolling out a new Marvel superhero series every six months.

Marvel and Netflix teamed up to bring five separate shows to the streaming service, focusing on a group of comic book heroes called The Defenders, a street-level Avengers team. The first in the series, Daredevil, premiered in April. Jessica Jones will be the next superhero to get a Netflix treatment before the end of 2015, followed by Iron Fist and Luke Cage, according to the Associated Press. After each has starred in their own series, all four will join forces for a Defenders show.

The announcement comes as anticipation for Jessica Jones, the first female superhero to headline her own Marvel project, grows. “I’ve been coming to Comic-Con for 12 years, and I think a lot of fans here have been eager to see more women onscreen for a long time,” Dawn Keiser, a 30-year-old Californian told TIME at San Diego Comic-Con in early July. “I was really happy to see the characters Karen and Claire become these heroes on Daredevil, but I really can’t wait for Jessica Jones to be the hero of her own show.”

Krysten Ritter, star of Don’t Trust the B in Apartment 23, will portray the first major female character with superpowers in a Marvel Studios project. Though Captain America character Peggy Carter stars in a 1940s-set Agent Carter on ABC, she has no powers—nor does Black Widow, the only female Avenger in the films. The first Marvel female superhero movie, Captain Marvel, won’t hit screens until 2018.

If the tone of Daredevil is any indication, Jessica Jones and the other Marvel Netflix shows will be much darker and bloodier than the one audiences know from films like Iron Man and The Avengers.


TIME movies

Ant-Man Wins Weekend Box Office With $58 Million

Beats out 'Minions' and 'Trainwreck' for the top spot

Looks like Ant-Man isn’t so little after all.

Marvel’s latest superhero film debuted to an estimated $58 million this weekend, falling just short of initial estimates but still outstripping Minions to snag first place. On one hand, Ant-Man failed to meet expectations of $60 to $65 million, and it earned the weakest debut ever for a Marvel Cinematic Universe movie (unless you count The Incredible Hulk, which opened to $55.4 million in 2008). But Paul Rudd’s superhero debut still earned first place, which means that the MCU is now 12 for 12 for #1 openings (and that’s including The Incredible Hulk). Ant-Man was never expected to reach Avengers-level numbers at the box office, and although it didn’t manage to crack $60 million, it wasn’t too far off from other MCU debuts like Captain America: The First Avenger ($65.1 million) and Thor ($65.7 million).

But even though Ant-Man came in first place, the biggest winner of the weekend might actually be Trainwreck. Even though it placed third with an estimated $30.2 million, that’s well above early predictions, which had Amy Schumer’s debut landing somewhere in the mid to high teens. Even though Schumer has basically ruled TV these past few months (and she’s proved that she’s hot enough to be on television), this was the first real test of whether she could carry a feature film. Based on these box office numbers (and generally solid reviews), we should expect to see more from Schumer on the big screen soon.

Meanwhile, Minions took a pretty steep hit of 57 percent in its second weekend, falling to an estimated $50.2 million. The Despicable Me spinoff topped the charts last weekend, earning the second biggest animated debut ever, and this weekend brought its domestic total to a whopping $216.7 million after only 10 days. At the same time, Inside Out regained its lead over Jurassic World, snagging fourth place by only about $300,000. But Jurassic World did get some good news this weekend: Its domestic total is now $611.1 million, making it only the fourth film in history to cross $600 million at the domestic box office.

Here are this weekend’s top five at the box office:

1. Ant-Man — $58 million
2. Minions — $50.2 million
3. Trainwreck — $30.2 million
4. Inside Out — $11.7 million
5. Jurassic World — $11.4 million

This article originally appeared on EW.com

TIME movies

Ant-Man Director on Paul Rudd’s Sweet Spot and Women in Comic Book Movies

The director explains how he overcame his dislike of 3D to make one of the year's best 3D films

When Ant-Man opens in theaters on July 17, viewers are in for a different kind of action movie. The protagonist’s powers of shrinking and controlling ants aren’t the sexiest in the Marvel canon, and the film’s star, Paul Rudd, is goofier than the average superhero. But with director Peyton Reed at the helm, the result is two hours of delirious fun.

TIME caught up with Reed before the movie’s release to talk about Rudd’s charm, shooting in 3D, playing with genre and female characters in comic book movies.

TIME: What was your relationship with comic books as a kid?

Reed: I had a very intimate relationship with comic books as a kid. I read comics at a very young age, starting in elementary school. I was almost exclusively a Marvel Comics reader—I read a few DC titles but I just gravitated toward Marvel because I loved the stories, I loved the characters, I loved that they were all flawed characters and that there was a sense of humor in the writing and in the editorial style. I was pretty obsessive; I knew comics came out on Tuesdays and Fridays. I would have my dad drive me to the newsstand.

I read that you especially liked Ant-Man. What was the appeal?

As a kid, I loved the powers. Shrinking taps into a childlike thing. I suppose there’s a correlation with how kids play: you’re always down on the floor, on the carpet, playing with whatever toys you’re playing with, imagining those really tiny things are much larger worlds. I loved shrinking, and I also loved how weird the idea of controlling ants was—which, by the way, was one of the biggest challenges of the movie. Is any sane audience member is gonna say, “How is that gonna come in handy?” We really show the audience in a big way what you could do. I just loved in the comics when he would go in ant tunnels; it was such a science fiction concept. I also loved that in the comics he was a founding member of the Avengers, and there was this inadequacy that he felt, because he’s fighting alongside Thor and the Hulk and Iron Man, and these are gigantic powerful heroes, and here he is, this tiny guy. They really leaned into that in the writing, which was great, but then they also turned around and he was maybe the only, not the only but maybe the predominant hero in the Avengers that had a girlfriend, the Wasp. That whole Janet van Dyne/Hank Pym relationship in the comics—it was great to see them fighting as a superhero team, but also the romantic component of that was always great.

What do you think will appeal to people about Ant-Man in 2015?

He’s a really relatable guy. Obviously at the beginning of the movie we see him come out of prison. But his main goal in the movie is to be a better father to his daughter, to earn his way into her life. And that immediately felt like a different dynamic for a Marvel movie. Structurally, you’re just with this guy at the beginning of the movie. Obviously it’s not as easy as he thought in the real world, temptation calls and he succumbs to that temptation—he does this heist and finds himself in possession of this suit. I loved the idea that he was a pretty normal guy who gets sucked into this Marvel world. Also, these movies have gotten bigger and bigger and louder and louder, and this movie was a chance to do the inverse—we went smaller. The great joys of the third-act battle in this movie between Yellowjacket and Ant-Man taking place in a little girl’s bedroom—that, to me, was fun.

How did you approach striking that balance between comedy and high-stakes action in those fight scenes?

It was something that was inherent in the movie from the beginning. There’s an absurdity to Ant-Man’s powers. He shrinks and controls ants, and you have to acknowledge that, but you also have to invest in it. I think that’s where Paul Rudd shines, because you absolutely buy Paul as a hero in the movie but he responds to these absurdities in the same way that you or I would. Paul Rudd is gonna hold your hand through this very strange adventure. I don’t think anyone’s gonna go see Ant-Man thinking that there’s gonna be anything emotional about it, but we really wanted there to be emotional stuff. But also we had a phrase, “treacle cutters.” If there was a very emotional part of the movie, we wanted to puncture it with a joke, and find that balance throughout.

What influences did you have in mind as you started work on the movie?

There’s 50 years of Ant-Man comics, so I would go through and look at different imagery from those comics, and there were elements, visually, that I wanted to bring to the movie. And then it has the structure of a heist movie, so there were rhythms that I wanted the movie to have. I wanted it to start with a little bit of a slow burn, and then once it catches fire, to just take off and move as a heist movie should. And then we added all these elements with Michael Peña and these tips that he provides to Scott Lang—that was something that we added when we were shooting the movie because Peña is just so amazingly funny and I wanted to bolster the visual language of the heist movie even more.

How did you approach shooting in 3D differently? How does it affect the sequences of action, and also dialogue-heavy scenes?

I’m a very compositional director. How things are blocked, how things move and the frames are always important to me. I’ve done predominantly comedies, but I never wanted to be a comedy director that just set the camera there and recorded someone being funny. I want the camera to be very much a part of the action and the comedy of a movie. So it was no different on this movie—it was just finding really striking compositions. I’ve traditionally not been a huge 3D fan. I’ve seen all the 3D movies, but this movie really felt like it organically lent itself to 3D, just because we’re dealing with issues of scale and perspective, and shallow depth of field—things like that. I love the movie in 3D. Honestly, I wasn’t sure I was gonna say that. I really wanted it to be a strong 3D movie, but I was really pleased to see the final results.

What were you trying to accomplish with the character of Hope?

Hope was always in the early drafts of the movie, but Evangeline [Lilly] and I had a lot of conversations early on about her arc in the movie—strengthening and deepening that arc, creating a character who had real issues at the beginning of the movie, particularly with her father, and kind of exploring the origin of those issues. As I said, in the comics, the relationship between Janet van Dyne and Hank Pym was so crucial, and Janet really was not in those early drafts, and I really wanted her somehow to be a presence in the movie. I like how we solved it because it’s really organic to the story between Hank and Hope. Ant-Man is as much Hope’s story as it is Scott’s. I like the idea that Hank Pym has this problem: he needs to get his technology back and destroy that other suit, and he recruits Scott Lang, when in fact the solution to his problem has been under his nose the whole time. Hope is clearly the more qualified person to deal with this issue, but Hank can’t see it. And part of his journey in the movie is becoming enlightened enough to know that he thinks he’s been protecting his daughter, but what he’s really been doing is holding her back and not acknowledging what she can bring to bear on the situation. So in the end when we see her get that suit, it’s been a very satisfying thing for audiences. I, for one, hope that we get the opportunity to really see what that character can do.

What are your thoughts on the current state of women in comic book movies?

It’s always been important to me in my movies—Bring It On, particularly, Down With Love and even The Breakup—to create really real female characters. It just seems like something that used to be a fundamental part of movies in the ‘30s and ‘40s, and then just sort of disappeared. Particularly in this genre of movie, the so-called blockbuster, these visual effects spectacles, there’s weirdly still a reluctance to have a female character at the center of these movies. James Cameron has done this for years: Sigourney Weaver in Aliens, if you look at Terminator, Linda Hamilton’s at the center of those movies, and Titanic and Avatar—every one of his movies, which are the biggest movies in the history of movies, and the lesson still hasn’t been learned.

What were the challenges of making the movie the way you wanted while still fitting into the Marvel universe?

I actually didn’t find it that challenging. When I first came in, one of the things I said is, “Ant-Man has to stand alone as its own movie.” It’s an origin movie, and it has to work as a beginning, middle and end if you’ve never seen another Marvel movie. If you have seen another Marvel movie, there’s absolutely stuff in the movie that enhances the experience. More than anything else, the one thing I kept getting from Marvel was, “Make it different, man.” Bring some imagery and ideas and things to the movie and make it as idiosyncratic as you can. Which, to me, was really liberating, because this is their twelfth movie. And I think Marvel’s biggest fear is to repeat themselves. I think it’s smart how they’ve taken different genres: Guardians [of the Galaxy] is a space opera; Winter Soldier is a ‘70s political thriller; our movie is essentially a heist movie. They really do, not only allow for, but encourage each movie to have its own eccentric tone.

What’s next for you and Ant-Man?

What is next for me is a little bit of a vacation with my wife and my seven-week-old child. After that remains to be seen. There’s definitely a lot more story to tell with these characters, and I’m hoping that we get to do that, because if we do, I would absolutely be on board for that.

TIME movies

There is Some Real Science Behind the New Ant-Man Film

Paul Rudd's character in the new Marvel film has a suit that shrinks him in size

There is some science behind shrinking a man to the size of an ant, according to quantum physicist, Dr Spiros Michalakis, who was the scientific advisor to the latest Marvel superhero film, Ant-Man.

Michalakis, who works at the California Institute of Technology, says the idea comes from the field of quantum physics where there is the potential to create smaller atoms.

“Even though the original writing by Stan Lee and his co-author meant to take this … less scientifically seriously. The true science does involve some quantum physics,” Michalakis told the BBC on Thursday.

Michalakis explained why, unlike human beings, ants are able to carry things 50 times their own body weight. He attributed it to Galileo’s square-cube law, which states that if you decrease the size of an object, the volume decreases but the objects density or strength would decrease a lot less. “So relative to your new size you would be much more powerful,” said the scientist.

But unlike what the film portrays, a shrunken human would not have superhuman strength.

“We would be as strong as we are now but the size of an ant,” says Michalakis, “which would be really, really strong but not much stronger than … normal sized human beings.”

The film opens in theatres July 17.


These Are the 5 Richest Superheroes

The wealthiest superhero is worth over $90 trillion.

It’s pretty good to be a superhero. As if it weren’t enough to have the awesome fighting powers themselves, the men and women who grace our comic book covers and headline blockbuster action movies also get spiffy outfits, cool names, dashing good looks, and, in many cases, a huge fortune to help fund their crime-fighting adventures. As Comic-Con kicks off in San Diego, we at Money decided to research how much the wealthiest caped crusaders are worth and see which champion is the most (economically) powerful.

Read next: The 10 Richest People of All Time

  • 5. Emma Frost

    Emma Frost
    20th Century Fox—courtesy Everett Collection Emma Frost

    Net Worth: $1-3 billion

    Frost, a reformed villain, now helps lead the X-Men with her psychic powers—and her enormous fortune. As chair of the board and CEO of Frost International, a multi-billion dollar electronics conglomerate, the telepath has considerable financial resources. And while there’s no specific figure placed on her wealth, her liquidated holdings were apparently sufficient to fund the X-Men’s island base for “the foreseeable future.” So that’s probably a lot.

  • 4. Professor Charles Xavier

    Professor X
    20th Century Fox—courtesy Everett Collection Professor X

    Net Worth: $3.5 billion

    Running a mutant superhero team isn’t cheap, so it shouldn’t be much of a surprise that two X-Men leaders make the list. Professor Charles Xavier, the founder of the X-Men and Xavier’s School for Gifted Youngsters, is worth $3.5 billion; at least according to Fantomex, who tried to extort Xavier (New X-Men #129). You’d think the same person who can read everyone’s mind might have a little bit more money on hand (he’d only be #497 in the Forbes 500), but Xavier seems to have bigger priorities than acquiring cash.

  • 3. Bruce Wayne

    Bruce Wayne
    Warner Bros—courtesy Everett Collection Bruce Wayne

    Net Worth: $9.2 billion

    Considering Bruce Wayne’s superpower is essentially “being rich enough to afford gadgets and karate training,” it makes sense that the Batman would be pretty loaded. Forbes estimates Wayne’s worth at $9.2 billion, and lists his company, Wayne Enterprises, as having an annual revenue of $31.3 billion.

  • 2. Tony Stark

    Iron Man
    Paramount—courtesy Everett Collection Iron Man

    Net Worth: $12.4 billion

    Tony Stark, otherwise known as Iron Man, narrowly edges out Wayne in the battle of billionaire playboys. Interestingly, while Forbes ranks Stark’s wealth ahead of Batman, the publication lists Stark Industries’ revenue ($20.3 billion) as less than that of Wayne Enterprises. Chalk it up to Wayne’s legendary philanthropy.

  • 1. T’Challa

    Marvel Black Panther

    Net Worth: $90.7 trillion

    T’Challa, the Black Panther, isn’t just the richest superhero. He’s almost undoubtedly the wealthiest fictional character of all time.

    How is it even possible for one person to have this much wealth? T’Challa is the king of Wakanda, a fictional African country with nearly all of the world’s reserves of Vibranium. And Vibranium, being a super-strong metal (Captain America’s shield is made out of Vibranium), doesn’t come cheap.

    According to the comics, the material costs $10,000 per gram, and Wakanda’s Vibranium vaults have 10,000 tons of the stuff (Doomwar #1). A little math and that amount of Vibranium would cost more than the GDP of the entire world.

    Unfortunately for T’Challa, a plot by Doctor Doom to steal Wakanda’s Vibranium forced the king to release a fail safe rending the stockpile inert, and potentially worthless. But on the upside, Black Panther is getting a movie in 2018. So you win some, you lose some.

TIME movies

Paul Rudd ‘Never Imagined’ Starring in a Marvel Film

Dream come true for the next Ant-Man

A version of this story first appeared in the July 3 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine.

Marvel is used to thinking in the biggest of terms. Its most recent movie, Avengers: Age of Ultron– produced at a whopping $250 million and pitting an ever-sprawling cast of superheroes (Iron Man, Captain America, Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch) against yet another apocalyptic threat – became the second-biggest movie of 2015 to date (behind only Furious 7), grossing nearly $1.4 billion globally. So Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige, 42, isn’t about to begin scaling back his ambitions: In October, he revealed what he calls Phase Three, a four-year plan of nine interconnected movies that the Disney-owned Marvel intends to roll out between 2016 and 2019 as it grows its Marvel Cinematic Universe (which, since 2008’s Iron Man, has grossed $8.5 billion from 11 movies).

A key piece of that plan was unveiled June 23 when Marvel and Sony Pictures jointly announced that after an extensive talent hunt, involving high-stakes screen tests in which the young contenders were filmed opposite established Marvel players like Robert Downey Jr. and Chris Evans, they’d picked 19-year-old British actor Tom Holland (The Impossible) to play Peter Parker and his superhero alter ego, Spider-Man. They also announced they’re entrusting the next Spider-Man movie, which is aiming for a July 28, 2017, opening, to a virtually unknown new director, whom Feige had championed: Jon Watts, whose sophomore indie feature, the thriller Cop Car, debuted at this year’s Sundance Film Festival. Holland will report immediately to the set of the currently shooting Captain America: Civil War, which Marvel has scheduled for a May 6, 2016, release and in which the newest Spider-Man will make his first onscreen appearance.

But, first, for its next act, Ant-Man, the final installment in Phase Two, Marvel deliberately is thinking smaller. Paul Rudd, 46, best known for playing likable guys in such off-kilter rom-coms as This Is 40 and I Love You, Man, is stepping into the Ant-Man suit to shrink down to the size of a picnic-pooper. And this time, instead of a cataclysmic battle to save the world, the climactic showdown takes place among a little girl’s play set. After the superheroics of Ultron, Ant-Man director Peyton Reed likens the new movie, which hits theaters July 17, to “a palate cleanser.”

But though Ant-Man, which cost $130 million, may be a more modest bet for Marvel, it’s no less of a risk, already having survived lots of behind-the-scenes drama. In May 2014, Marvel and British director Edgar Wright – who’d been attached to the project since 2006, co-writing a screenplay with Joe Cornish – hit an impasse. Fanboys, who loved the quirky sensibility Wright had brought to movies like Shaun of the Dead, were outraged to learn he was off the movie. Admits Feige, “There were all these stories, the evil studio is crushing dreams and creative visions.” Adding to the pressure as Marvel moved quickly to try to keep Ant-Man on track was the fact that other studios, most notably Warner Bros., were taking a cue from Marvel’s playbook and attempting to build their own competing universes of interrelated movies. But after Rudd and his Anchorman director Adam McKay volunteered to rewrite the screenplay, Reed (Bring It On), who nearly had been tapped to direct last summer’s Guardians of the Galaxy, quickly was drafted to take over the reins. Just a little more than a year later, as the Ant-Man release (and Comic-Con, which Marvel Studios is bypassing for the first time since 2011) approaches, Rudd and Feige sat down together with THR at Marvel’s offices on the Disney lot to look back at the experience as well as look ahead to where Marvel goes next, including its deal with Sony to share Spider-Man in upcoming movies. “Ant-Man is the movie that closes out Phase Two,” says Feige. “But the truth is, there’s so much in Ant-Man that all plays into Phase Three.”

Why isn’t Marvel going to Comic-Con this year?

KEVIN FEIGE It was just timing. We had done that [media] event in October, when we announced so much. Everyone knows what we’re doing over the next few years. I really have a belief: If you can’t go to Comic-Con and overdeliver, then don’t go.

Back in 2006, you announced Iron Man, Hulk and Ant-Man as your initial trio of movies. But then you moved on to Thor, Captain America and Avengers. Why did Ant-Man get sidelined?

FEIGE That Comic-Con 2006 was less than 10 frickin’ years ago, but it feels like 50 years ago. That was the first time we had ever gone as our own studio. That Comic-Con was really about us trying to show people we were serious. But it’s not quite accurate to say that Ant-Man has been actively in development for all that time. Edgar [Wright] had done a draft, and then nothing happened for two or three or four years. Then he’d do another draft, and another two to three years would go by. It wasn’t until two years ago, we said, “Hey, let’s make this movie.”

So why do Ant-Man now as opposed to one of the other characters?

FEIGE If the stars had aligned, we would have made it earlier. Ant-Man will be our 12th Marvel Cinematic Universe film. Even when we had done only five or six, it was very clear that Ant-Man was going to be slightly different. It was an opportunity to tell a more intimate story. We’ve never had a hero whose origin involved him having a daughter as a motivating factor for his redemption. And when you’ve had aliens pouring into Manhattan, artificial intelligence robots lifting cities out of the ground to annihilate mankind, supersoldiers, Norse gods and dark elves, there’s a lot of action going on. So the notion of shrinking down, to have an arena that is not another city or an entire planet or a fictional place like Asgard but is a bathtub, or is a rug, or is a little girl’s play set – that felt like a great opportunity to deliver Marvel’s thrills and action in a totally different way.

Paul, while this was being developed, you were busy doing a lot of comedies. Had you asked your reps to get you a Marvel movie?

PAUL RUDD No, but I rarely have those kind of discussions with my representatives about anything. I don’t have an agenda where I do a comedy and say, “I have to do a drama next,” or “I am looking for an action movie now.” The Marvel world wasn’t anything I thought about seriously because I guess I never imagined I’d get hired.

FEIGE We honed in on Paul relatively early. A very high bar has been set with Robert Downey in Iron Man. That idea was, find the best actor for the part, regardless of whether they’ve been in a movie like this before. Great actors, charismatic actors, who can connect to the audience on a deeply emotional and on an entertaining, charismatic level and also be able to pull off the action and look cool in a suit – the inherent likability you can’t train for, and Paul has that.

Paul, is a Marvel movie different from signing on to do some other movie since you know the character will appear in other films?

RUDD What’s different about it is that it’s a character who’s joining a universe that exists throughout several movies, and that’s like nothing I’ve ever done.

So how many movies is Paul signed for?

FEIGE It was multiple, like every movie nowadays. Three is the minimum. But I think it’s three-plus-plus to appear in other things.

Let’s talk about what happened last spring. Kevin, you decided the script wasn’t right. But other studios have been in the same situation and decided to move forward anyway.

FEIGE Well, we’ve done that before, and sometimes that can work, and sometimes it’s more difficult. But with Edgar, it was mutual. People said, “You guys have been working together for 10 years; why did you only figure it out a couple of months before you started filming?” But that’s really not true. We’d been working on it for about nine months, maybe a year at most. And it became apparent to him and to us that the best thing to do was to move on. But because Edgar has a fan base and Marvel has a fan base, there’s good and bad that comes with that high profile. And one of the bads is that internal decisions and shuffles get headlines.

Paul, did you think the movie was falling apart?

RUDD Kevin assured me that it wasn’t. And within days, I was here sitting in offices right down the hall, kind of formulating the next steps, meeting new directors.

Why did you and Adam McKay then decide to rewrite the screenplay yourselves?

RUDD When we were talking about other directors, Adam came in. He’s a friend of mine. We talked about some things in that meeting, and then walked outside, and Adam and I spent 20 minutes or so in the parking lot talking about possibilities. It felt like we were building room additions on a house that Edgar and Joe had done.

The movie’s really about fathers and daughters. Was that something that was always there?

FEIGE That was there. I think they enhanced it in many ways. But that goes back to the comics — the relationship between Scott Lang and his daughter, Cassie, is key to his origin in the late ’70s in the comics. And the addition of Hope Van Dyne as Hank Pym’s daughter is something that was in those early drafts from Edgar and Joe in the beginning.

RUDD These two guys are birds of a feather in many regards. If Scott is experiencing some of these things with his daughter, Hank can be maybe a few steps ahead of the game, but have the same kind of dynamic. It just seemed like interesting parallel stories to focus on, this idea of struggles that parents and kids have.

Maybe because of those family themes, it feels like a Disney movie as much as a Marvel movie.

FEIGE Probably, but there certainly wasn’t any intention of making this any more or less Disney than any of our other movies. The relationship with Disney has been unbelievable, going back toIron Man 2 and then to Avengers, which is the first one they marketed and distributed.

When you’re working on a movie like Ant-Man, when does Disney know exactly what you’re up to?

FEIGE They know from the very beginning. [Walt Disney Studios chairman] Alan Horn and [Disney chairman and CEO] Bob Iger know from the start, and read drafts and certainly know all the moves that we’re making and watch early cuts.

How often do you talk to both of them?

FEIGE It varies. I talk to Alan more than Bob. But it varies – a few times a week.

And how do you strike a balance between Ant-Man being a stand-alone movie and also having connections to the other movies?

FEIGE Ant-Man is one of the best examples of how a movie can do both. It’s absolutely a stand-alone film about Hank Pym and Scott Lang, but it is within this universe.

RUDD Essentially, this is a heist film, and if you look at the structure of heist films, there is always a test run and the test run fails. In talking about what could be a good test run, we were just playing around with conversations and thought, “Oh my God, what if he actually fought an Avenger?” We started getting really giddy about this idea. It seemed like that would be a fun way to incorporate the universe into this film.

Is there some secret room here where there’s a big map of how all these movies inter-relate?

FEIGE There’s various rooms. Occasionally, we’ll bring out boards. But it’s become second nature. So it’s sort of spread out amongst the rooms of the brain trust here.

Do you keep a bible of how all the movies are connected?

FEIGE People think we have a whole big story, but really what we are doing right now is producing 10 individual stand-alone movies that have to work and play on their own. Our sandbox is full of Marvel characters, so it makes sense to pull from that. So that often happens. We need a character to get from A to B. Should he encounter a policeman? Should he encounter a banker? Should he encounter another superhero? It just opens up our creative avenues to explore and to tie them together.

Peyton Reed hasn’t directed anything like this before. Why did you turn to him?

FEIGE When I was a lowly man on the Marvel totem pole many years ago, he was attached to direct a version of Fantastic Four at 20th Century Fox. That version of the movie didn’t end up going forward. Peyton came very, very close to doing Guardians of the Galaxy for us. So when this came together, he ended up coming in and was 50 percent very enthusiastic to do a movie with us and 50 percent skeptical, but he read all the drafts and heard some of the new ideas we were already talking about with Paul and with Adam. Thankfully, he signed up.

Warner Bros.’ Greg Silverman told THR that the difference between the DC/Warners movies and Marvel movies is that Warners allows directors to fulfill their visions. How do you respond?

FEIGE My response is: Look at the movies. Iron Man and Iron Man 2 are as Jon Favreau films as you can see. Kenneth Branagh has his stamp all over Thor. Captain America: First Avenger is very much a Joe Johnston film. The greatest example of that, look at Guardians of the Galaxy with James Gunn. And the one I always point out is Avengers. We knew the general structure when we sat down with Joss [Whedon]. But I don’t want you to think we gave him a story. We gave him a “Here’s where we think the movie should start, here’s where we think this character should come into it; it would be fun if something like this happened in the middle and in the end a hole opens up and aliens pour out into Manhattan.” So arguably, there were many pieces in place, and yet now that everyone has seen the movie, it’s completely a Joss Whedon film. He was able to take all the elements that were handed to him – that were studio-imposed, if you want to look at it that way – and make it his own. We wouldn’t have hired any of the filmmakers we’ve hired if we just wanted somebody who would do what we say.

Paul, did you have to train for Ant-Man? In This Is 40, you had more of what’s now being called a “dad bod.”

RUDD [Judd] Apatow made me gain weight for that. He was sending me food. So, yeah, I went the opposite way for this. Besides just working out with a trainer and weights, I also worked with a gymnast. I knew I was going to have to do rolls and flips and things like that. I just wanted to be as convincing as possible.

Did you get any type of CG assist? Because you’re looking pretty cut in the movie.

FEIGE You mean when Paul has his shirt off? No, it’s all him.

RUDD (Laughing.) That’s right.

How does Ant-Man fit into what you call the Phase Three cycle of Marvel movies?

FEIGE It really is the movie that closes out Phase Two. Phase One ended with Avengers. So some people thought that Phase Two would end with an Avengers film. But the truth is, there is so much in Ant-Man: introducing a new hero, introducing a very important part of technology in the Marvel universe, the Pym particles. Ant-Man getting on the Avengers’ radar in this film and even – this is the weirdest part, you shouldn’t really talk about it because it won’t be apparent for years – but the whole notion of the quantum realm and the whole notion of going to places that are so out there, they are almost mind-bendingly hard to fathom. It all plays into Phase Three. It became very clear that Ant-Man is the pinnacle and finale of Phase Two and Captain America: Civil War [May 6] is the start of Phase Three.

You laid out the framework for Phase Three in October – how much room do you give yourself to move it around?

FEIGE Well, we already shifted once. Spider-Man wasn’t part of that announcement when we made it in October. So there’s always room to shift. But since we shifted the release dates a couple of months ago when the Sony agreement was announced, that’s the plan we’re very much headed toward, with Civil War being the first part of that. We go into production on Doctor Strangein November. The next Guardians of the Galaxy starts shooting around February of next year. The Spider-Man film soon after that. The third Thor film right about the same time. And we’re already beginning to prep: We’ve announced the writers and directors [Anthony and Joe Russo] for Avengers: Infinity War 1 and 2.

Other studios now are copying the Marvel game plan, trying to create their own universes. Is it getting too crowded?

FEIGE For the most part, that’s been the case since 2003. There was Iron Man, there was Hulk, Punisher – maybe that was 2003 – Daredevil, Fantastic Four, Iron Man 2, Spider-Man 3. There really has been three or four a year almost every year that I’ve been working here. And I feel the same way I did then. We’re just going to continue doing what we’re doing. We can’t control what other people do. We can get excited about it when [other studios’ films are] good and root for them. Because the more of these films that are successful, the more audiences are going to be excited for the next one, especially if they are not delineating between the universes. And as long as ours are distinct – not from everything else because I don’t know what everybody else is doing – but from each other, I think our plan that we outlined last October represents a very clear and exciting four-year plan.

After Civil War, how much will Marvel be involved in Sony’s Spider-Man movie?

FEIGE Well, we’re producing it for Sony. It’s exciting, and we’re treating it like we treat all of our films. To try to make the best version now of Spider-Man and a version of Spider-Man that inhabits this universe that we’ve created. We’re in lockstep with [Sony Motion Picture Group chairman] Tom Rothman and [producer] Amy Pascal at every turn.

So some of your Marvel characters will show up in the Sony Spider-Man movies?

FEIGE Specifics of the story aside, the agreement that has been made between Sony and Marvel is that we could do that.

Do you risk giving up any of your autonomy by working with Sony?

FEIGE Without getting into the contracts, it’s definitely a Sony picture, produced by Marvel Studios. We’ve been working with each other for a number of months now. It’s been just as healthy as any of our internal discussions. We just look at it as having additional team members. We wouldn’t want to do it if we couldn’t do it in the way we’ve done all the other movies, and I think that’s what Sony wants from us.

How far away are you from picking directors for Black Panther and Captain Marvel?

FEIGE I think by the end of the summer, we’ll have most of those things. Black Panther especially.

Do you feel pressure to find a black director for Black Panther or a woman for the female superhero movie Captain Marvel?

FEIGE It’s an issue across the industry, for sure. And the issue is, we need to find the best director for any given movie. And that’s really where we always start. If diversity is part of that, it’s great. It’s important. You will start to see things across the industry as a whole change as more filmmakers come up through the ranks and become part of making movies like this.

Would you have liked to have had a woman director on one of these movies by now?

FEIGE I think it will happen sooner rather than later, without giving too much away. But you look back sometimes, and it’s just the nature of this industry, or the nature of the culture. But there’s a big shift happening. What’s exciting about Marvel, go back and look at the source material: It’s been diverse in a cutting-edge way going back to the ’60s, and I think we’ve represented that effortlessly and accurately in the movies we’ve made up to this point, but certainly with Black Panther and Captain Marvel doing it in a much more overt and purposeful way.

Ava DuVernay has been mentioned as a director for Black Panther. Is she under consideration?

FEIGE We’ve met with her for sure. We’ve met with a number of people for a number of movies. She has been one of them.

Looking to the future: Robert Downey Jr. has hinted his days as Iron Man might be numbered. If for some reason one of your actors doesn’t continue in the movies, do you recast or simply retire the character now that you’re developing new members of the Avengers?

FEIGE Thankfully, I’m not going to be faced with that decision for many, many years because we have everybody locked up and planned out for as far as any studio has movies planned. But one day, it will be a combination. It will be a combination of choosing which characters to continue on with and explore and which to bring in, as we’re doing with Captain Marvel and Black Panther. And certainly to recast in some way or another – as we’ve already done in certain cases. Certainly many other franchises have reached that milestone before we have and done that with great success.

During the Ultron rollout, you had a couple of cases where the actors went off script, like Jeremy Renner and Chris Evans calling Black Widow a slut. How much anxiety did that create for you?

FEIGE Well, it’s never fun when stuff spins out — particularly today, anything goes, starts trending and becomes the biggest deal in the world. All of those actors are the sweetest, kindest people in the world. Everyone gets loopy on a junket. You’re around the world, you land at two in the morning, you don’t know what day it is. So now those things get picked up and serviced and sent around the world. At least, in the instances that occurred on Avengers, it was just people being loopy and not thinking.

So, Paul, have you also started shooting your scenes in Captain America: Civil War?

RUDD I did a couple of weeks ago.

And are you team Iron Man or team Captain America?

RUDD Those are government secrets. I was telling Kevin, it was the first time I really felt like I was in it. I started working on Ant-Man a couple of years ago, and I’ve been so immersed in it. But we’ve been shooting it in a bubble. When I went to the set of Civil War, I was 10 years old. There’s Captain America, there’s Iron Man. And not only that, but I’m doing scenes with them, calling them by their names. That feeling of excitement, the surreal nature of it is the best, it was great. I really felt for the first time part of the Marvel Universe.

This article originally appeared on The Hollywood Reporter

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Nineteen-year-old British actor Tom Holland will become the next Spider-Man, and he can do whatever a spider can. Before Marvel and Sony made the casting announcement official on Tuesday, Holland posted a series of Instagram videos two days ago showing off his stunt work.

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A video posted by ✌️ (@tomholland2013) on


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Holland will most likely appear first as Spider-Man in Captain America: Civil War in 2016 before getting his own film in 2017.

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Steve Granitz — WireImage Tom Holland arrives at the 24th Annual Palm Springs International Film Festival at Palm Springs Convention Center on January 5, 2013 in Palm Springs, California.

Marvel and Sony have chosen their new web-slinger

British actor Tom Holland (The Impossible) will play Peter Parker in the next Spider-Man franchise, Marvel Studios and Sony announced Tuesday, defying some fans’ calls for a non-white Spidey.

This will be the second reboot of the Spider-Man series since Tobey Maguire played the character in the early 2000s. Andrew Garfield put on the iconic blue and red outfit for the 2012 rethink and now Sony, which has long held the movie right to Spider-Man, will team up with Marvel Studios to incorporate Spidey into the successful Avengers films.

Holland, 19, will likely make his first appearance in Captain America: Civil War in 2016 with a standalone film premiering the following year, to be directed by Jon Watts (Cop Car).

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The casting decision comes just a day after Marvel Comics announced that Miles Morales, not Peter Parker, would be the one and only Spider-Man in the all-new Marvel Universe this fall. Morales, unlike Parker, is black and Hispanic.

Some fans of the comic books lobbied online for Marvel Studios to make a similar pivot and diversify its mainly-white Avengers cast when it rebooted the Spider-Man movies, with a long-running campaign to draft Donald Glover, the Community actor who voices the hero in the animated series The Amazing Spider-Man, for the role.

The actor told Yahoo Movies he’d be willing to take the role and a #donald4spiderman hashtag trended both before Garfield won the role and again before Holland was named the latest iteration.

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