‘Ant-Man’ Mighty, ‘Trainwreck’ Doesn’t Live Up to Its Name on Thursday | News Entertainment

‘Ant-Man’ Mighty, ‘Trainwreck’ Doesn’t Live Up to Its Name on Thursday

17 Jul 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

‘Ant-Man’ Editor Talks About Working With Peyton Reed, Cut “Wish Fulfillment” Sequence.

For Disney and Marvel’s Ant-Man, which debuts this weekend, the studio brought in veteran Dan Lebental, who edited the studio’s Iron Man, Iron Man 2 and Thor: The Dark World. This weekend presents one of the more intriguing match-ups of the summer movie season. “Ant-Man,” the latest from Marvel Entertainment–the comic-book juggernaut that keeps pumping out theatrical hits–and “Trainwreck,” the Universal Pictures comedy featuring Comedy Central star Amy Schumer.The earnings are comparable to 2013’s “Thor: The Dark World,” which opened with $7.1 million in Thursday latenight screenings on its way to an $85.7 million opening weekend, and Universal-Illumnation Entertainment’s “Minions,” with $6.2 million in previews as part of a $115.8 million launch last weekend. “Ant-Man” is headed for a weekend in the $60 million to $65 million range from 3,856 locations, most of which are in 3D.

With Marvel’s latest superhero adventure now in theatres, we had a spoilerific chat with director Peyton Reed (Yes Man) about everything from the remarkable technology behind that opening scene to why certain heroes do (and don’t) make an appearance. And this time around, he co-edited the film with Colby Parker, Jr., a frequent collaborator with Peter Berg whose credits include Lone Survivor and Hancock. Schumer have potent Web video and social media networks to help draw people to theaters, both also have gone beyond the typical movie-marketing blowouts on TV and turned to YouTube influencers for help.

For example, Marvel tapped the popular guys-doing-funny-stunts channel, Dude Perfect, to create some branded video content for “Ant-Man” (see above). The process of making Douglas look 25 years younger for this prologue scene was handled by Lola VFX, the same company that turned Chris Evans into a short and scrawny Steve Rogers in 2011’s Captain America: The First Avenger. “This movie has over 1,500 visual effects shots, and I have to say that opening sequence was the one that made me the most nervous,” said Reed, who was tapped to direct Ant-Man after Edgar Wright (Shaun of the Dead) bowed out. “It’s the first scene of the movie, it had to work.” The 70-year-old Douglas’ face was digitally de-aged and composited onto the body of a younger actor, who based his mannerisms on Douglas’ performances in Fatal Attraction, Wall Street and other ’80s flicks. Dude Perfect, which was featured in YouTube’s recent marketing campaign, reaches an audience that is nearly 93% male, according to the Web video analytics firm OpenSlate. Until recently “Ant-Man” was going to be a self-referential spoof directed by Edgar Wright of “Shaun of the Dead” fame, and some of that DNA is still in there. Wright and “Attack the Block” director Joe Cornish are among the four credited writers, but at some point star Paul Rudd and “Anchorman” director Adam McKay got in on the action too.

Look how good I look!’ Then he inquired about buying the company.” When freshly minted mini-hero Scott Lang (Paul Rudd) is sent to steal an important piece of technology from a Stark Industries facility, he runs afoul of Sam Wilson, a.k.a. Schumer and her co-star–former “Saturday Night Live” cast member Bill Hader–appeared in a video produced by the mega popular YouTubers The Fine Bros., who boast of 12.7 million subscribers.

Rudd plays Scott Lang, the cheerful lowlife who is transformed into Ant-Man by the power of Michael Douglas’ shellacked hair and Clinton administration eyewear. Anyway, the movie was directed in the end by a person called Peyton Reed, one of those longtime Hollywood comedy people who isn’t good enough to be memorable or bad enough to be mockable. Universal and Schumer have been actively promoting “Trainwreck,” starting with a high-profile screening at March’s SXSW to generate buzz. “Trainwreck,” directed by R-rated comedy specialist Judd Apatow, cost a relatively modest $35 million to produce.

It largely resembles — no, largely is an elaborate CGI action cartoon with giant ants (mostly friendly) and a giant Thomas the Tank Engine (super scary!), bookended by a pleasant but inconsequential Paul Rudd indie comedy that cost $75 million or whatever it was. While the film retools Ant-Man’s origin story, Reed decided to have the Wasp show up in a flashback scene in which she sacrifices her life on a mission with Pym. “I loved them as a superhero team, and I loved the romantic aspect of it,” said Reed, a longtime comic book fan. “To be able to visualize that flashback for me was a thrill, because those characters really meant something to me as a kid.” Eagle-eyed moviegoers looking for Easter eggs in Ant-Man won’t be disappointed. Universal Pictures’ “Trainwreck” has been particularly active in partnering with YouTube talent, perhaps knowing its up against the gigantic power of the Marvel universe.

Reed advises fans to check the margin stories of any on-screen newspapers, pay attention to words on the page that Antony the carpenter ant is standing on, and to keep a very sharp eye out when Ant-Man enters the quantum realm. “I would say just watch out for something, maybe in the corner of the frame, something you might see also reflected in Ant-Man’s helmet,” said Reed. “By the time the DVD and Blu-ray come out and you can single-frame it, it’s there.” (Our unconfirmed guess: a hat-tip to the Micronauts, Marvel’s subatomic superheroes.) The Wasp flashback isn’t the only time the old-school superheroine makes an impact in Ant-Man. In the first of the movie’s two end-credits scenes, Hank Pym reveals the Wasp suit to his wide-eyed daughter Hope Van Dyne (Evangeline Lilly), suggesting that she might follow in her mother’s footsteps. “The movie is every bit Hope’s arc to becoming a hero as it is Scott’s,” said Reed.

If it wasn’t for Peyton Reed’s demeanor and extensive knowledge of Ant-Man and Marvel, I can’t imagine how we would have pulled it off as well as we did. The blitz of Web video influencers shows the lengths movie studios likely need to go to these days to reach younger audiences, when it’s not so easy to get people to got to actual movies. Partway through its “Honey, I Shrunk the Burglar” plotline, “Ant-Man” turns into yet another cinematic riff on the mind-altering, reality-shifting visual journey pioneered by Stanley Kubrick in “2001: A Space Odyssey.” No, see, you think I’m still being facetious but I’m totally not. According to Box Office Guru, “Ant-Man” is projected to pull in $57 million at the box office in the U.S. this weekend, more than double the $24 million expected for “Trainwreck.” Of course, while it’s difficult to compare the two, Marvel is starting from a massive social-media footprint. Reed attempts, after his own antlike fashion, to follow in the tripped-out footsteps of Christopher Nolan’s “Interstellar,” Gaspar Noé’s “Enter the Void” and Luc Besson’s “Lucy,” just to name a super-mixed bag of examples.

Fingers crossed.” For Ant-Man’s second end-credits scene, Reed said the original idea was to have some comedic banter between Scott and Luis (Michael Pena). The company’s YouTube channel averages over 23 million views a month, claims 2.2 million subscribers, and scores very high in terms of “influence” as tracked by OpenSlate, which crunches data on how frequently YouTube channels incite sharing, comments and other engagement measures. After he goes down a bathtub drain and gets sucked into a vacuum bag and surfs the grooves of an LP on a DJ’s turntable and evades the platform shoes of hot young disco dancers, Rudd’s micro-hero gets so tiny he enters the realm of quantum physics, where the laws of space and time no longer apply and your personal identity vanishes into kaleidoscopic triangles floating through a loaf of moldy bread.

Near the end of Ant-Man, a cute montage makes mention of a wall-crawling hero who’s been spotted around, marking the very first reference to Spider-Man in a Marvel cinematic universe movie. You took a powerful drug, or to put it another way you are a character in a discombobulated summer movie that’s kind of fun but doesn’t have nearly enough story to fill up two hours.

You want to give the audience just enough so [they understand how he can do they things he does] but if you give them too much, they’ll think ‘this is taking forever.’ Origin stories always take a little longer to get going, but to me they can be much more interesting. Then we get one post-credits stinger scene alluding to the endless future of yet more Marvel movies — and then we get another one (which I didn’t understand at all). If you wanted him to appear small, you had to have something in the frame that was of a comparative size, i.e. you put a nail in there and so you knew his size. Also when he was small you couldn’t shoot like you normally would shoot a ‘super hero angle,’ sort of low or mid-shots, because those would betray the scale.

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