Ant-Man and the Wasp hit theaters two weekends ago, during which time it made almost $300 million at the box office. It might not be as big a hit as Black Panther or Avengers: Infinity War, but the Ant-Man sequel does deliver a missing piece of the bigger puzzle: What was Ant-Man doing while everyone else was fighting Thanos?
As we already told you, the Ant-Man and the Wasp credits scenes explain all that. And they tease that the fallen superheroes will rise again in Avengers 4 next year. What we didn’t know at the time was that the scene that ties the film to Infinity War was mandatory. Beware, some spoilers follow below.
Ant-Man 2 ends on a whimsical note. Everybody is fine after the events of the film. But that all changes in the first credits scene, where we have two generations of Ant-Men and Wasps together for a greater good.
Hank Pym and Janet Van Dyne are working alongside their daughter Hope Van Dyne in a parking lot, where a van was converted into a portable quantum realm gate. Scott Lang, meanwhile, is tasked with going to the quantum realm to pick up some mysterious magical energy that can heal former villain Ghost.
That’s when the snap from Infinity War happens. Ant-Man is, all of a sudden, stranded in the quantum realm again, as Hank, Janet, and Hope are all turned to ashes by the snap.
According to Ant-Man and the Wasp director Peyton Reed, this scene was mandatory.
“We talked a lot about how many tags we would have and sort of what it was going to be,” Reed told io9. “And even when we hit on this idea, there was a lot of discussion about who and how.”
“The decision really came about with us all talking dramatically about the characters in our movie,” Reed continued. ”We liked the idea of what we did with Scott but then it became a thing of ‘Who else is going to be in that scene?’ And not just ‘Who’s going to meet a certain fate?’ but ‘Who is going to be in the scene?’ Obviously, there’s Hank, Hope, and Janet in the scene but we were like ‘Is Bill Foster there? Is Ava Starr there? Is Luis there? How many people are going to be there?’”
Reed and Co. had to include the snap in their movie, as a way to tie Ant-Man to the events in Infinity War.
“The only thing that was dictated outside of our needs was the thing set up in Infinity War, this sort of 50 percent thing,” Reed said. “So you couldn’t get away with having too many people there, and where we landed just kind of felt right.”
Reed explains that the first credits scene is supposed to shock the viewer, after that happy end.
“Our movie ends and everybody’s stories are resolved in, really, too neat of a bow,” Reed said. “Scott’s out of house arrest and he’s reunited with Cassie. X-Con is not going to go under, they got the big client. Hank has found Janet and they’re off on the beach, tying it all up in this very neat bow. Then [cut to the] end credits where we punch the audience in the gut. It felt like our movie’s very specific way of dealing with that.”
The second scene, which takes place after the snap, teases the events after the snap. But it’s also supposed to reassure fans that Ant-Man and the Wasp will return. In fact, it’s thanks to the second scene that I believe the Wasp isn’t dead, and she will return, alongside everyone else who died in Infinity War.
“That came about as we landed on that second tag which is obviously the more comedic of the two tags, but still has a darkness to it,” Reed said. “The first time we just sort of mocked [the question mark] up in the Avid, it made us all laugh and it works as like ‘Will they [return]?’ But mostly it made us laugh in a fun way. So it was fairly late in the game we came up with that but, tonally, it just struck us as ‘This is our movie.’”
On a similar note, we already know that Spider-Man: Far From Home starts minutes after Avengers 4 concludes, which means Spider-Man is very much alive after that. And it would appear that so is Nick Fury.