Beware, as the title states, there be spoilers for the Ant-Man movie here!
Fans who saw a special Avengers double-header at their local AMC theater got a special treat in the form of a charming and funny interview with the stars of the upcoming Ant-Man movie, Paul Rudd and Michael Douglas. As you probably know, Michael Douglas plays Hank Pym - in Marvel comics lore this character is the original Ant-Man and one of the founding members of The Avengers. In the Marvel Cinematic Universe, we'll be seeing some changes to Hank Pym - but one thing is certain to stay the same, he's still the first Ant-Man.
In the interview, at around the 3:45 mark, Michael Douglas answers the question of where the Ant-Man movie finds the character of Hank Pym. From the trailers and interviews prior to this one, we know that the movie's antagonist is Darren Cross, the man who took Pym Industries away from Hank and starting working on more sinister plans for developing the Ant-Man technology for the purposes of the military and other nefarious ends. In the course of this, Cross develops the Yellowjacket suit and Hank Pym enlists Scott Lang, an ex-con with a certain set of skills (the thieving kind) to break into Cross' lab, the former Pym lab, and steal back the technology.
The Dangers of the Ant-Man Suit
What Michael Douglas reveals in this interview is something that sheds some more light on why the Ant-Man suit needs to be passed down - aside from the obvious issue of a 70 year old Douglas being a little long in the tooth to be jumping down drain pipes. He shares a little detail about the effects the Ant-Man suit can have on a body over time. Douglas hints that Hank Pym has been "getting small" (a sly reference here to Steve Martin's classic bit about how he likes to "get small") for too long and the effects of the suit became too dangerous after a certain amount of time.
This is an interesting reveal and I'm guessing that it is something that may continue to come up in the movie - most likely regarding Darren Cross who has been playing with this technology for a while now and in making it more lethal, could also be making it more dangerous for the person wearing his Yellowjacket suit.
Ant-Man & The Pym Particle
The "Pym Particle" has been at the center of the Ant-Man technology in the comic books. Hank Pym's experiments with unstable particles has lead him to be able to both shrink and grow to Giant-Man size. In the pages of the Marvel comic books repeated exposure has both good and bad side-effects: Eventually the person wearing the suit will find that his or her body will naturally produce these particles, allowing them to shrink or grow at will; but Hank Pym has also seen his fair share of physical and mental breakdowns due to the toll that this transformation and exposure to the Pym Particles takes on the body and mind.
Hank Pym's unstable mental condition over the years has largely been attributed to his exposure to the Pym Particle but a couple years ago Marvel actually gave Hank Pym a diagnosis of Bipolar Disorder. It will be interesting to see how this is treated in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It would seem that the Ant-Man movie will definitely tread on the physical toll that the technology will take on the person wearing the suit but the comedic tone that the movie has means it probably won't get into the darker side of the mental toll. Maybe Marvel is saving all that for the sequels...
What do you think? How far should Marvel's Ant-Man movie get into the unstable nature of the Pym Particle and the effects it has on the person using the technology? How are you feeling about the MCU version of Hank Pym? Take to the comments section and keep the conversation going!