Back when Ant-Man first debuted in 2015, many probably would never have guessed that he'd go on to be an instrumental part in one of the biggest movies of all time, Avengers: Endgame, and basically the key reason everyone was saved from The Blip. His upward swing in popularity is only going to continue, seeing as his next outing in Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania will put him up against the big bad of the Multiverse Saga: Kang the Conqueror.
The movie recently showed off footage at San Diego Comic-Con 2022, and it certainly left a lasting impression on audience members in attendance. Attendees got to see Cassie Lang in action for the first time, Jonathan Majors' Kang teased his previous Avenger kills, and MODOK himself was even revealed.
Sadly, the teaser won't be seeing the light of day anytime soon. But while fans wait for that moment to come, director Peyton Reed potentially revealed one small tidbit of information regarding the upcoming project: they've already cut its first cameo.
Ant-Man Director Cuts a Cameo... or Does He?
Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania director Peyton Reed appeared on THE BEST SHOW with Tom Scharpling, where the director came to break the news to his friend, and host of the show, that his cameo in the upcoming Marvel Studios had been cut.
The director mentioned how he "was not expecting to do this in real-time" but that Scharpling's cameo "had to [be] cut:"
“Now you and I, Tom, we had a conversation about… there’s a pickup shoot coming… September 17th, which you, I think, when we spoke last week said you might be able to do... The reason I came by tonight… I was not expecting to do this in real time, but– and this is serious. I’m not… this is not a gag. This is actually serious right now. So the scene we were planning to shoot, which was going to be, this is not a spoiler, but it was going to be in San Francisco. We have had to cut.”
When asked if he was serious, Reed pressed on, noting that thanks to "editorial" and "some budgetary issues with that particular thing," it truly had to be cut:
“This is serious, but we were supposed to shoot it. And again, through editorial and there’s some budgetary issues with that particular thing. It was a very quick scene, but as you and I discussed, it was a very clear, ‘Okay, this is the one… We’re gonna get you,’ and now, um…”
The director tried to assure Scharpling that "there's still a [chance]" and how "there are some opportunities still after that thing:"
“But, I’m holding… but there’s still a chan–… I probably should not have done this on the air. I’m looking at your face right now. I probably–... It’s not over yet. I’m looking at you… I should not have done this live. I’m sorry, man… But hold on, there’s a couple of things I’ll talk to you about. There are some opportunities still after that thing… I feel like you’re actually in shock right now... there’s there’s some opportunities coming up that I think we can figure out but I can’t talk to you about it on-air.”
So why have any doubt when it comes to Tom Scharpling's cameo being cut?
Well, this conversation could all be in jest, despite Peyton Reed claiming otherwise. Reed has been known to do comedic bits about his films with the likes of Scharpling and other comedians, like Tim Heidecker and Gregg Turkington for On Cinema at the Cinema. So, the two could just be joking, either about cutting the scene or even filming the cameo entirely.
If Reed isn't lying, this wouldn't be the first time that Scharpling has potentially been cut from one of Reed's projects. He was in a deleted scene in the first Ant-Man film where Paul Rudd's titular hero buys a lottery ticket.
Then there was his brief time on Ant-Man and the Wasp, in a bit that Reed at one point declared to be "uncuttable."
Who Will Make the Final Cut in Ant-Man 3?
Hopefully, for Scharpling's sake, Reed's comments were all a fakeout, because being cut from three movies in a row is a rough time. There is still the possibility that Reed isn't lying about Scharpling's scene being cut, and that the two are simply playing up the dramatics for the sake of the bit.
If the conversation above is really completely honest, and Reed was truly breaking the news to his friend, Scharpling's probably a little bummed out. But hey, there are always reshoots. Maybe Reed can squeeze him in.
What might the comedian have been? Well, seeing as he was a store clerk in the first movie and what seems to be a goon in the second, there's almost no way of giving an informed guess as to what this third movie would have offered him. Though one would think it would have something to do with the Quantum realm; could he have been a denizen of Bill Murray's character?
As great as Scharpling is, fans will likely agree that his cameo is not the one most are hoping to see. One of the biggest desires is to finally have the Young Avengers properly teased—maybe with an appearance by Hailee Steinfeld's Kate Bishop or Xochitl Gomez's America Chavez.
With the project landing on February 23, 2023, audiences only have to wait half a year for the next Ant-Man project.