Update Monday AM: And another one bites the dust. While Adam McKay's talks with Marvel Studios were at an advanced - and offered - status, now the comedy director has also backed out of the director spot for Ant-Man.
THR reported the move Saturday afternoon, and McKay confirmed himself on twitter that he had decided against the project "due to other commitments."
So now the question remains - who will direct Ant-Man for Marvel Studios? With McKay getting a very public offer - and rejecting it, will the other two "finalists" Thurber and Fleischer get offers, and knowing they were down the line, will either take the project? And of course there's that other question - why is it so hard to find a director to sign onto a Marvel Studios project starring the bankable Paul Rudd and Michael Douglas?
Update Saturday AM: Just hours after the field was narrowed down to three, Ain't it Cool News reports and Variety confirms that Adam McKay, the director of Anchorman 1 & 2 will get behind the camera for Paul Rudd once more in Ant-Man with Marvel Studios. The former Saturday Night Live writer and director also has comedies Taladega Nights, Step-Brothers, and The Other Guys under his belt.
Marvel Studios reportedly wanted to stick with a director with a comedic background after Edgar Wright, whose "Three Flavours Cornetto Trilogy" merged comedy and action to wide critical acclaim, left the project due to creative differences. With principal photography planned for this summer (possibly as early as June) and a release date of July 17, 2015, the movie will still be using a version of Wright's script co-written by Joe Cornish, though Marvel Studios has reportedly made alterations to make it better fit with the rest of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
There has been no direct confirmation from McKay or Marvel/Disney yet on the hire.
Original Story: While Edgar Wright is out of Ant-Man’s helm , Marvel Studios still has every intention of launching the film on July 17, 2015, which likely means keeping its principal photography timing of this summer. As such, THR has some fresh reports on Wright’s possible replacement, and they all have somewhat similar sensibilities.
Rawson Thurber, director of We’re the Millers and Dodgeball, Adam McKay, director of the Anchorman duo, and Ruben Fleischer of Zombieland fame are all reportedly in the mix, meaning that while Marvel is moving away from the singular vision of Wright’s, they aren’t moving too far away from a comedic bent.
THR is quick to note that McKay and Thurber do have other active projects, and that there may be other directors still in the mix. Regardless, it’s clear that Ant-Man is still gearing towards being the funniest movie in the Marvel Studios lineup, despite some humor being injected into each prior offering.