Today Marvel Studios released their first official images from [Ant-Man](movie:9048)! We now have an our first look at Paul Rudd as Scott Lang, a petty thief who turns from crime to justice after stealing the Ant-Man suit from Henry Pym. Pym, who will be played by Michael Douglas, becomes Lang's mentor as he learns to master using the Ant-Man suit. Take a look at the shot below!
The still doesn't give us too much information and quite frankly...it's a little lackluster. This shot of Rudd looking rugged and tired definitely looks of the pre-Pym era. Maybe he just finished a heist, or maybe he's about to go steal the super-suit! First looks are supposed to be exciting...but this one leaves me wanting more, especially considering the uncertainty floating around regarding Rudd as our leading (ant)man.
A lot of people were surprised when he was announced to play the superhero. I've got to admit, it is kind of weird seeing him look so serious in this still. While a great actor, he is generally know him for his comedic roles. Will he really be able to pull off playing a superhero?
But then it hit me! I have felt this level of doubt before and been forced to eat my words like a petulant child. Whenever an iconic comic book role is cast, it is easy to feel like the studios are trying to change everything we know and love about the characters. Hey, sometimes we're right. But when we have been wrong, we've been really wrong. Here are 5 castings that were surprising at first, but turned out great!
Heath Ledger - The Joker The Dark Knight
When the late, great Heath Ledger was first cast as The Joker in The Dark Knight, the amount of public outcry was crazy. Fans were confused and irate. He was known mostly for his roles in Brokeback Mountain and teen-romances like 10 Things I Hate About You. People were really unsure of Ledger's ability to play one of the greatest villains in comic book history.
Boy, did he prove us wrong! Ledger's take on The Joker was equal parts terrifying and captivating. His Oscar-winning performance will loom over anyone who hopes to play The Joker in the future.
Andrew Garfield - Peter Parker The Amazing Spider-Man
When the young, Brit Andrew Garfield was cast for [The Amazing Spider-Man](movie:45497) in 2012, there was a lot of criticism that the studios was going to simply replace Toby Maguire with a Robert Pattinson type Spider-Man, despite his roles in other great films such as The Social Network and The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus.
Garfield was more than capable and proved doubters wrong by playing an amazing Spidey. He will continue to play the role in [The Amazing Spider-Man 3](movie:671279) in 2016 and [The Amazing Spider-Man 4](movie:1004341) in 2018.
Robert Downey Jr. - Tony Stark Iron Man
Back when Robert Downey Jr. was cast, all the way back in 2007, he was not exactly a hot commodity for major studios. People were concerned that he would not be able to get his act together long enough to play the incredible Tony Stark.
Now here we are in 2014, with a few more Iron Man films completed and some still underway and all of [The Avengers](movie:9040) movies, and in a world where someone other than RDJ playing Iron Man can't even be imagined.
MMMark Ruffalo - Bruce Banner The Avengers
Mark Ruffalo has always been a great actor, but since Edward Norton's take on the role in The Incredible Hulk had only come out four years earlier, fans were surprised to hear that he would not reprise his role as Bruce Banner.
Louis Leterrier, the director of The Incredible Hulk, later stated that he had wanted to cast Ruffalo originally, but the studio went with Norton instead. Luckily, Joss Whedon picked up Ruffalo for [The Avengers](movie:9040) and [The Avengers: Age Of Ultron](movie:293035) so now we have a Hulk that's easy to lo!
Michael Clarke Duncan - Wilson Fisk Daredevil
No one was concerned with a lack of talent or ability when it came to the amazing Michael Clarke Duncan. He had already had an Oscar nomination under his belt for his role in The Green Mile.
This was a bold casting move because never before had an iconic comic book character been played by someone of a different race. A shining beacon in an otherwise bad superhero film, Duncan gave a brilliant performance as the nefarious crime boss Kingpin.
There you have it! While Paul Rudd's casting may seem somewhat off-kilter as far as appearance and genre go, we have little reason to doubt his skill as an actor. If anything, we're in need of more comedic superheroes! I mean, look at [Guardians of the Galaxy](movie:424073). And, you guys, this is a superhero who can shrink himself down to the size of an ant, after all. Rudd might be able to add just the right amount of humor to Ant-Man!
[Ant-Man](movie:9048) is set to hit theaters on July 17, 2015.