Peyton Reed explains why Michael Peña wasn’t in Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania

Peyton Reed stated that Luis, Kurt, and Leo, did not return because they didn’t fit into the story of Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania.

The Ant-Man series has been a fan favorite since the first installment premiered in 2015, with major contributions from lead character Scott Lang and best friends – namely, Kurt, Leo, and Luis. Sadly, the latest installment, Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania, does not include these three friends. Now we know why.

Michael Peña starred in the previous Ant-Man films but didn't appear in Quantumania.

During a recent sit-down with The Hollywood Reporter, director Peyton Reed revealed why none of the friends, especially Luis who is portrayed by Michael Peña, featured in the huge showdown between Scott Lang and his family on one hand and Kang the Conqueror on the other.

Tip Harris and David Dastmalchian did not reprise their roles as Leo and Kurt respectively either, leaving the friend group AWOL entirely. That said, Dastmalchian features in the film as a new character: a freedom Fighter named Veb.

Reed stated that Luis didn’t return in the threequel because he didn’t fit into any of the stories the film had to tell. In his words, "There were no versions of this movie [with Luis]. There are a lot of characters in the movie. We obviously have our Lang, van Dyne and Pym family, but then we also introduced Kang, MODOK and all of our Freedom Fighter characters. So, we had to make decisions early on about what stories we could tell and what stories we couldn’t tell."

He expressed his love for the characters and applauded their impacts on the previous installments. Nevertheless, he reiterated that "it just didn’t make sense" to include them in a story that focuses on the Quantum Realm.

While many fans were surprised that Peña wasn’t in the film, the actor hinted at the possibility that he won’t reprise his role during an interview with ComingSoon in 2020. During the interview, the 47-year-old actor expressed his interest in reprising his role as Luis but acknowledged Marvel’s situation with cutting characters following the events of Avengers: Endgame.

Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania is currently enjoying a good run at the box office with over $200 million earned in its first weekend despite a rough critical reception.

Paul Rudd, Evangeline Lilly, Michelle Pfeiffer, Michael Douglas, and Corey Stoll reprise their roles as Lang/Ant-Man, van Dyne/Wasp, Janet van Dyne, and Darren Cross/M.O.D.O.K. respectively. Apart from these, the film also featured Kathryn Newton, Katy O’Brien, William Jackson Harper, Bill Murray, and Jonathan Majors as Cassie Lang, Jentorra, Quaz, Lord Krylar, and Kang respectively.

Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania is performing well at the box office despite an overwhelmingly negative critical reception that makes it the joint-worst-rated MCU film alongside Eternals. It also appears that Marvel never doubted the film’s box office draw as producer Stephen Broussard revealed prior to the film’s premiere that they were already discussing a fourth installment.

Quantumania serves up essential plot points for the new on-going saga.

Despite the disconnect between fans’ and critics’ reviews of the film, one thing both sides agree on is that its visual effects are less than optimal. According to three VFX technicians, this happened because Marvel pulled some people out of their rank to work on Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.

Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania is currently showing in theaters around the world.

Tobi Oguntola

Tobi is an avid reader with interest in everything entertainment. He also loves the big screen as it fuels his overactive imagination. When he is not reading a fantasy, sci-fi, or thriller novel, he is listening to music, watching TV, or surfing the internet. Tobi is on Steam as tobioguntola.
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