If you’re still smarting from writer/director Edgar Wright’s sudden departure from Marvel Studios’ Ant-Man after he spent years developing the project for them, this is not going to sooth the hurt.
Joss Whedon, who as director of 2012’s The Avengers and next month’s sequel The Avengers: Age Of Ultron has basically had a hand in all of the films that Marvel had been developing between the two, has praised the screenplay that Wright had written with co-writer Joe Cornish, saying that it was the best screenplay that the studio ever had in its hands.
The admission came as part of his answer in an interview with BuzzFeed as to what lead to Wright’s departure from the film.
I don’t get it. I thought the script was not only the best script that Marvel had ever had, but the most Marvel script I’d read. I had no interest in Ant-Man. [Then] I read the script, and was like, Of course! This is so good! It reminded me of the books when I read them. Irreverent and funny and could make what was small large, and vice versa. I don’t know where things went wrong. But I was very sad. Because I thought, This is a no-brainer. This is Marvel getting it exactly right. Whatever dissonance that came, whatever it was, I don’t understand why it was bigger than a marriage that seemed so right. But I’m not going to say it was definitely all Marvel, or Edgar’s gone mad! I felt like they would complement each other by the ways that they were different. And, uh, somethin’ happened.
That’s some effusive praise from Whedon and you can hear the regret that Wright’s version didn’t get made from his own fanboy heart. And I can’t say that I blame him. As a fan of Wright’s work, one who loves both the visual energy he brings to his films as well as his smart and layered approach to his storytelling, I can only imagine what his script read like. I suppose that is until it invariable gets leaked out.
Wright’s departure from Ant-Man came as a surprise in March 2014, as the director had been working on the project for Marvel since 2006. Working with writer Joe Cornish, Wright had turned in several drafts of the screenplay and shot some test footage showcasing the heroe’s shrinking powers before the studio gave the greenlight to the project.