‘Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania’: Trailer, Plot, Cast, First Reactions, Release Date

Marvel’s smallest hero will return to the big screen next weekend. Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania is the next film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and it lands in theaters Friday, Feb. 17.

Quantumania is the third solo outing for Paul Rudd’s size-changing hero Scott Lang, following 2015’s Ant-Man and 2018’s Ant-Man and the Wasp. It’s the 31st MCU film overall, but more importantly, it’s the first installment in the MCU’s Phase 5, which means this new flick paves the way for some huge changes in the Marvel movie series.

The latest trailer reveals a high-stakes battle between Scott and the MCU’s new major antagonist Kang, played by Jonathan Majors. Here’s everything you need to know about Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania, including release date, cast, plot and trailers.

When will Ant-Man be released?

Ant-Man 3 comes to theaters Friday, Feb. 17.

Quantumania will be the first major blockbuster to hit theaters in 2023. And it’ll be the biggest blockbuster to tackle the smash hit success of Avatar: The Way of Water, which premiered in December and was only just dethroned by Knock at the Cabin

First reactions

Full reviews are coming next week, but critics have already praised the film’s weirdness and the magnetic performance from Majors.

Several critics agreed the film was a bit messy, including CNET’s own Sean Keane who took a more measured view of the film.

Who’s in the Ant-Man 3 cast?

Returning director Peyton Reed once again recruits Paul Rudd as Scott Lang and Evangeline Lilly as Hope van Dyne, whose parents are played by Michelle Pfeiffer and Michael Douglas.

David Dastmalchian also returns, although he may be playing a different character than he did in the first two Ant-films. Lang’s daughter Cassie is played by Kathryn Newton, star of Big Little Lies, Freaky, Pokémon Detective Pikachu and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.

Scott, Cassie and Hope stand on a bridge and stare at something in Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania

Scott, Cassie and Hope face a quantum realm threat in Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania.

Marvel Studios

Jonathan Majors follows his appearance in the final episode of Disney Plus Marvel series Loki, playing the villainous Kang.

Also starring are William Jackson Harper, Katy O’Brian and Bill Murray. Yes, that Bill Murray.

What’s the plot?

Having rescued Janet van Dyne from the quantum realm in the previous Ant-Man and the Wasp film, the Ant-gang ventures back into the itty-bitty teeny-tiny universe. This time Cassie is along for the ride, as Scott tries to regain the time he lost with his troubled teenage daughter. According to the trailer, he makes a deal with the evil Kang — which goes horribly wrong, of course. 

Who’s the bad guy?

Jonathan Majors may already have appeared as Kang, but this is a different version of the character. The Kang we met in Loki was a being called He-Who-Remains, who kept the universe from splitting into infinite parallel timelines, aka the Multiverse. Loki’s interference saw the return of these parallel universes, and we saw the consequences in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. 

The new film also features a first MCU appearance for MODOK, a comic character who goes by the name Mental Organism Designed Only for Killing. A sort of cyborg brain, he’s previously appeared in the Hulu comedy animated series, voiced by Patton Oswalt, and in the 2020 Avengers game. In Quantumania, MODOK is played by Corey Stoll, who previously played the bad guy Yellowjacket in the first Ant-Man film.

It isn’t clear how MODOK or Kang wound up in the quantum realm, but it looks like this is just the start for the MCU’s new big bad. The character who would become Kang was first seen in the Marvel comic Fantastic Four #19 in 1963, created by writer Stan Lee and artist Jack Kirby. Initially a criminal from the far future who traveled back in time and conquered ancient Egypt, he was later seen in further comics in which he was named Kang the Conqueror. His unchecked time traveling created many different versions of the character, and in the post-Multiverse Phase 5 MCU movies we’re also definitely going to see more of him.

What’s the book?

The film sees Scott Lang write a memoir of how he went from petty thief to world-famous superhero — and the book is real! Titled Look Out for the Little Guy, it’s available to preorder now (but doesn’t come out until September, by which point the joke probably won’t be funny anymore).

Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania trailer

Here’s the first trailer, released in October, which opens with a more familiar Ant-Man comedic tone.

The second trailer, released in January, was a darker affair that emphasized the drama and adventure.

When will it be on Disney Plus?

Way too early to say. Quantumania will stream on Disney Plus eventually, although the home release date for Black Panther: Wakanda Forever (on Blu-ray, DVD and streaming Feb. 1) suggests Disney is making us wait longer to see new Marvel movies at home compared to earlier in the pandemic era.

What’s next for the MCU?

We know Kang will be a major antagonist — like Thanos before him — because Phase 5 is building to a movie called Avengers: The Kang Dynasty in 2025.

Here’s the full list of the rest of Phase 5, from Quantumania to the next few years of theatrical movies and streaming series.

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