All 35 DreamWorks Animation Movies Ranked From Worst to Best (Photos)

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DreamWorks Animation has gone through its share of upheaval, with a few big successes (Shrek, Madagascar) and some notable failures. Since its first animation releases in 1998, it has changed, diversified, merged and been acquired by major studios (fir…

Will There Be an ‘Avengers: Endgame’ Trailer During the Super Bowl?

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It’s a cliche by now that a lot of folks watch the Super Bowl primarily for the commercials, and for movie studios the Big Game tends to be a pretty big marketing day. So you tune in for the football and the funny ads, and you’re treated to new trailers for some of the biggest movies of the year.

And there’s little doubt, at this point, what will be the biggest movie of 2019. After “Avengers: Infinity War” grossed more than $2 billion worldwide and ended on probably the most insane cliffhanger in the history of the cinema blockbuster, everyone is expecting “Avengers: Endgame” to make a similarly gargantuan splash.

This is an unusual year for the Super Bowl in that we aren’t expecting a whole lot of movie trailers during the game this year. For whatever reason, studios seem to be shying away from the spectacle this time. But will Disney be among those skipping the Super Bowl this year?

Also Read: Check Out This New Clip of Captain Marvel Fighting a Dude on Top of a Train (Video)

Officially, there’s no word on whether “Avengers: Endgame” will make an appearance during the Super Bowl, but we are expecting a new trailer Sunday evening.

The marketing cycle for the film started fairly late for one of these things, with the first trailer dropping in early December. For a mega-blockbuster like “Endgame,” we expect three trailers before it lands in theaters on April 26. Around the release of “Captain Marvel” in March is a natural place to put one, and so the Super Bowl likewise would make perfect sense as far as timing.

But that’s just our guess — we don’t actually have any official word about an “Avengers: Endgame” trailer for the Super Bowl. But we would be surprised if the game comes and goes without one.

Also Read: How Will ‘Captain Marvel’ Play Into that ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ Ending and ‘Endgame’?

On the other hand, given how cryptic and relatively low key we expect the marketing for this movie to be — Marvel doesn’t want to give away anything — they could very well just skip past the Big Game confident that they don’t have to make a huge push to get folks out to see how this whole thing ends. Anything is possible.

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Peyton Reed Trolls Fans Looking for ‘Avengers 4’ Info on ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’ Director’s Commentary

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(Spoilers ahead for the ending of both “Ant-Man and the Wasp” and “Avengers: Infinity War”)

“Ant-Man and the Wasp” got its digital home video release on Tuesday night, and if you’re like me the first thing you did was watch the movie’s audio commentary with director Peyton Reed in hopes that he might give some insight into how its ending, which intersects directly with that of “Avengers: Infinity War,” would lead into “Avengers 4” next year.

And while Reed’s commentary was certainly full of fascinating and interesting nuggets about the characters and behind-the-scenes goings-on on “Ant-Man and the Wasp,” it did seem to be missing any chatter about the future of the Marvel Cinematic Universe in general and Ant-Man specifically.

That is, until the very end of the film, when Ant-Man (Paul Rudd) is marooned in marooned inside the Quantum Realm because Hank Pym (Michael Douglas), Janet Van Dyne (Michelle Pfeiffer) and Hope Van Dyne (Evangeline Lilly) all fell victim to Thanos’ finger snap.

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Finally, Reed starts to look forward a bit, but it’s all in service of lightly trolling the audience because of course he isn’t actually allowed to say anything about “Avengers 4.” So, yes, it was disappointing that we don’t get any substantial tease for what’s next from this commentary, but also this was pretty. Read Reed’s full comments below.

“What this means, in the larger sense — of course I’m not at liberty to say. You know that! Even if you’re sitting here listening to this, and you’ve been listening to me ramble on for two hours. And you’re hanging on the hope — oh man, is he gonna reveal something about ‘Avengers 4’ that I don’t know? Well guess what, you’re in luck. I have here the screenplay [shuffles papers] for ‘Avengers 4,’ which I am going to read to you right now.

“But before I actually get through the entire script I’m just going to read some of the salient plot points. Now, these are not only spoilers, I would say these are extreme spoilers. So I’m gonna go through them very, very carefully. So the first question is: is everyone dead, or who’s coming back?

Also Read: ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’ May Have Just Set Up These ‘Avengers 4’ Time Travel Plots

“Well, here’s what I’ll say about — I can only speak about our characters in ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp.’ So Scott Lang is in the Quantum Realm, and he is seemingly trapped, and we don’t quite know how he’s gonna get out. We know in the first movie he had some grow discs with him that he used to get out. Dramatically, we can’t go to that well again. That would just be lazy. As filmmakers, we can’t do that again. So we made sure that he does not have any grow discs with him in the new suit. And, remember, it appears that it’s the malfunctioning suit. So how’s he gonna get out of that? Well, here’s how [crackling noise that he makes with his mouth, then silence for several seconds] …and he manages to do what I just said. So, umm, you guys got that, right? Cool.

“So, now let’s talk about our favorite Avengers. Let’s talk about Spider-Man. Let’s talk about Iron Man, Captain America, Black Panther, Hulk. What happens to these characters in ‘Avengers 4’? Well — hang on, someone’s coming. Yeah. You know what, I’m being told that I cannot actually tell you any of this stuff. I thought the street date of this disc would allow me to reveal some of the secrets, but I’m not gonna be able to reveal any of that. I apologize for that. Sorry to get your hopes up about that.

“I can talk to you about the next ‘Ant-Man’ movie. [pause] Actually, I’m not allowed to talk about that either. There’s really been no determination as to whether there is even going to be a next ‘Ant-Man’ movie, or ‘Wasp’ movie, or anything. We don’t know anything. And I’m not allowed to talk about that. So, umm, let’s talk about, umm, let’s talk about ‘Planet of the Apes.’ You guys like the ‘Apes’ movies?”

Also Read: 13 Major Lingering Questions We Have After Seeing ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’

From there, Reed does proceed to talk about his love of the “Planet of the Apes” franchise, then “Star Wars,” then Altoids — he jokes that because of the prominent appearance of an Altoids tin in “Ant-Man and the Wasp” he now gets a lifetime supply of the mints.

Anyway, all that certainly wasn’t what we were looking for when we turned on the commentary, but it was pretty funny. In any case, only five more months or so until “Captain Marvel” comes out, and (sheesh) seven until “Avengers 4” gives us a resolution to all this. “Only” seven months.

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So here we are, stuck in the painfully long space of time between this summer’s “Avengers: Infinity War” and “Ant-Man and the Wasp” and next year’s “Captain Marvel” and the as-yet-untitled “Avengers 4.” There’s a whole eight months between now and “Captain Marvel” in March. That’s a lot of time to make wild guesses about what’s to come in the final two chapters of this stage of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

I’ve spent a lot of time going down comic book rabbit holes the last couple months to try to get a handle on all this, and I’ve got one of those wild guesses for you right here. This one involves what part Carol Danvers, aka Captain Marvel (Brie Larson), will have to play in all this madness. And how “Ant-Man and the Wasp” may have given us a pretty big hint about that by having Scott Lang, the Ant-Man (Paul Rudd), get stuck in the Quantum Realm when Thanos snapped his fingers.

I think the clue comes courtesy of an obscure hero from the ’80s named Quasar.

Ever heard of Quasar? No? Don’t worry, that’s not all that unusual. For a cosmically powerful hero from Earth, Quasar (real name Wendell Vaughn) is pretty obscure, and as I’ve polled various comic book nerds about him, only once have I gotten a stronger response than “Oh, yeah, that guy.”

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His lone solo run lasted from 1989 to 1994 — 60 issues, and only nine of them are available in the Marvel Unlimited app. Nine! It’s not unusual for old runs to be missing issues on Marvel Unlimited, but that’s a pretty unusual and dramatic ratio. While, sure, he did pop up every once in a while for crossovers and guest appearances after his solo run, and Marvel recently handed off the Quasar mantle to a new character, nobody cares.

But while I categorically don’t think we’re gonna be seeing him in a movie any time soon — or ever — there are interesting Quasar-related things that I think have a pretty good chance of being very relevant to the Marvel Cinematic Universe after “Ant-Man and the Wasp” and ahead of next year’s “Captain Marvel.”

But before I get to those things, we should step back for a second and talk about the Quantum Realm. The Quantum Realm has been one of the MCU’s most interesting enigmas — specifically because of the name — since it was introduced back in the first “Ant-Man” movie. The comic book equivalent of the Quantum Realm concept is the Microverse, though it does not resemble the Microverse all that much from what we’ve seen of it so far in “Ant-Man” and “Ant-Man and the Wasp.”

Also Read: The Complete Timeline of Marvel Cinematic Universe Movies, From ‘Iron Man’ to ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’

The real mystery of the Quantum Realm’s name is not just about why they went with a name that has no comic book parallel, but why they went with that name specifically. And I think I’ve come up with a possible answer.

So in Marvel comic books there’s a concept of a sort of side dimension that characters use to travel around the universe quickly. Basically every sci-fi universe has some version of this — hyperspace in “Star Wars,” for example — but Marvel has been pretty haphazard about it over the decades they’ve been using this conceit, which a bunch of different names being thrown around to describe this side dimension.

But the basic concept has been relatively consistent over the years. Characters will use some kind of dimensional portal or wormhole to travel to this other dimension, and from there they can jump back out to wherever they want to go. The first time Marvel used this idea was back in “Fantastic Four #37” in 1965, when Reed Richards and pals use an experimental rocket drive to fly through what Reed calls “subspace” to get to the Kree Empire in a different galaxy.

“Subspace,” “hyperspace” and “warp space” are the three main terms that are thrown out there to describe this method of travel, though those are not the only ones, and most of the time they kinda just gloss over what’s actually going on when folks skip around the universe. Like it’s just your run-of-the-mill sci-fi faster-than-light travel, don’t worry about the specifics.

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And that’s more or less how the MCU has treated interstellar travel thus far. They just go fast, don’t worry about it. And so we don’t know or care about how that works.

Okay, so there are two reason I’m talking about this right now. First, here’s how Jack Kirby drew this “sub-space” for the first time back in “Fantastic Four #37”:

So, that is vaguely reminiscent of the some parts of the Quantum Realm that we see in “Ant-Man and the Wasp.” See for yourself:

Now, let’s go to my second reason for bringing all this up: Quasar! Finally, let’s talk about Quasar.

So the really interesting thing about Quasar is that he is, essentially, a quantum superhero. His power comes from the Quantum Bands which can do, well, whatever the author of the comic in question wants them to. That’s the fun of “quantum” things.

But there is one specific thing that Quasar can do with the Quantum Bands that is relevant to all this — he can use them to do that sub-space travel thing without a ship. Except he doesn’t call that side dimension sub-space or any of the other terms that are used in Marvel lore. He calls it the Quantum Zone.

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You could try to argue that Quasar’s Quantum Zone is not the same as sub-space — but it functions the same way. And when he makes what he calls a Quantum Jump in “Quasar #32,” some people watching even guess that he’d entered warp space.

So we’re going to assume they’re the same thing.

Now, even more interesting is that Quasar’s Quantum Bands draw their power from the Quantum Zone, much like how Doctor Strange draws his power from other dimensions. And even more more interesting is that Quasar was given the Quantum Bands, and thus his power, by the cosmic entity Eon — who named him the new Protector of the Universe.

The previous Protector? Mar-Vell, who we’re going to see in “Captain Marvel” next year, as played by Jude Law.

Again, I don’t think there’s even a small chance that Quasar himself is going to show up in the MCU, but I would guess there’s a distinct possibility that Carol Danvers, Captain Marvel herself, will be given some of Quasar’s quantum abilities.

Also Read: ‘Avengers: Infinity War’: Here’s Why Thanos Waited to Go After the Infinity Stones Himself

It would fit irritatingly well based on how the MCU likes to sort of remix comic book lore, and based on certain assumptions we have about what will happen in “Captain Marvel” and “Avengers 4.” Let’s run through those real quick:

1. Scott Lang, aka Ant-Man, is now stuck in the Quantum Realm after “Ant-Man and the Wasp,” and he probably won’t get out the way he came in. We’re assuming a “time vortex,” which Janet van Dyne (Michelle Pfeiffer) mentioned just before he went down there, will be involved. We don’t know what a time vortex is, but we’re guessing it’s a wormhole back to the normal world — which also probably sends whoever goes through one to a different time than the one they came from.

2. Mar-Vell, the original Captain Marvel and the Protector of the Universe, will die in the 1990s-set “Captain Marvel,” setting in motion the events that will lead to “Avengers: Infinity War.” This is especially important given Mar-Vell’s relationship to Thanos in the comics — Mar-Vell was made a Protector of the Universe specifically because he and Thanos were arch-enemies. Read more about that here.

3. Carol Danvers will obviously take up the mantle of Captain Marvel and somehow be key to defeating Thanos in “Avengers 4.”

4. Time travel will be involved in defeating Thanos and undoing the damage caused by the Infinity Gauntlet in “Infinity War.”

Also Read: ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ Does Have One Big Gamora-Related Plot Hole

So if time travel is important, it stands to reason that our heroes will have to figure out a way to travel to whatever times they actually want to visit on purpose. And that timely mention of time vortexes in “Ant-Man and the Wasp” would also indicate that that the Quantum Realm will be involved in facilitating said time travel — otherwise they’d need to steal the Time Stone off Thanos’ burnt out Gauntlet, which doesn’t seem like a logical way for the “Avengers 4” story to kick off.

So if the Quantum Realm of the movies is the equivalent of the Quantum Zone from the “Quasar” comics, and if Captain Marvel in the MCU, possibly as Mar-Vell’s successor as Protector of the Universe, has some sort of Quantum Band-type tool that can harness the power of the Quantum Realm, then she may well be able to use it to send the Avengers off on a rollicking time adventure.

Based on the pieces we have to work with at the moment, this feels like as good a guess as any. The MCU has often mixed and matched pieces from the comics in new places and characters, and often just goes in completely new directions with stuff, like Janet van Dyne’s as-yet-undefined quantum abilities which have no apparent precedent in the comics.

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Now, if we’re right about any of this then it’s likely we’ll only be half-right. Like maybe there is a character who can use the Quantum Realm to jump through time in a controlled manner, but it’s not Carol Danvers. We theorized elsewhere that Ant-Man could meet a past version of Janet down there — maybe the reason she knows what a time vortex even is is because she has used one before, or watched Scott go through one. Or maybe Ant-Man himself will figure it out after being stuck down there a while.

Or maybe we’re completely wrong. But based on what we know about the situation in the MCU at present — which admittedly is not really all that much — and based on what we know of how the creative overseers of the MCU operate, what I’m suggesting here certainly feels like the sort of thing they would do.

But whatever the answer is, we’ve got a long wait until we find out one way or another. “Captain Marvel” is a mere eight months away.

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(Note: This post contains massive spoilers for both “Avengers: Infinity War” and “Ant-Man and the Wasp,” so read on at your own risk!)

The Marvel Cinematic Universe was gutted by the events of “Avengers: Infinity War” and the arrival of Thanos, a villain so strong even the combined might of nearly every MCU superhero couldn’t stop him.

You know what happened by now: Despite a valiant effort to stop Thanos (Josh Brolin), the Avengers and their allies failed. The Mad Titan collected all six Infinity Stones on his Infinity Gauntlet, and with a snap his fingers used their united power to erase half of all life in the universe. All because Thanos believes mass murder on a cosmic scale will rid the universe of its problems and free the survivors to create sustainable utopias.

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That’s not how the heroes (or audiences) saw it though. Cue Peter Parker’s “Mr. Stark, I don’t feel so good,” and fans worldwide agreeing wholeheartedly as a huge number of their favorite heroes dissolved into ash.

How huge? As if millions-of-sequels-suddenly-cried-out-in-terror-and-were-suddenly-silenced huge.

Here’s everyone lost to Thanos’ finger snap, from “Infinity War” through “Ant-Man and the Wasp.”

Bucky Barnes, the Winter Soldier (Sebastian Stan)

Captain America’s best friend Bucky was among the first to disappear in Wakanda, which is especially a bummer given how hard he fought to reclaim his life and identity after being brainwashed by HYDRA to become the Winter Soldier.

T’Challa, the Black Panther (Chadwick Boseman)

Wakanda’s king vanished as he helped Okoye up, apparently leaving the nation without a king, again.

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Wanda Maximoff, Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen)

Adding insult to injury, seconds after losing Vision when Thanos pulled the Mind Stone from his head, killing him, Wanda fades to dust mid-mourning.

Sam Wilson, Falcon (Anthony Mackie)

Captain America’s buddy Sam has been coming into his own as an Avenger across the last few movies he’s appeared in, but despite being a major force in the Battle of Wakanda, in the end, the coin-flip of Thanos’ snap got him.

Groot (Vin Diesel)

Groot’s end is the second-most heartbreaking in “Infinity War,” thanks to his hugely emotional moment as he vanished in front of Rocket Raccoon, but we didn’t know the full extent of the gut-punch until “Guardians of the Galaxy” director James Gunn shared what the final “I am Groot” meant on Twitter.

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Peter Quill, Star-Lord (Chris Pratt)

His anger at what Thanos did to Gamora wasn’t enough to keep Star-Lord from fading away after the battle on Titan — but if there’s a Soul Realm hidden inside the Soul Stone, Peter and Gamora might be reunited.

Drax (Dave Bautista)

Most of the Guardians of the Galaxy vanished after the finger snap, including Drax, whose death is even more tragic because Thanos killed Drax’s family years before, and his Infinity Gauntlet finished the job.

Mantis (Pom Klementieff)

Right alongside Drax, Mantis faded away as well, after spending most of her life as a slave to Ego (Kurt Russell) as seen in “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2”.

Peter Parker, Spider-Man (Tom Holland)

The most heart-wrenching moment in “Infinity War” finds Peter succumbing to disintegration as he begs his mentor, Tony Stark, to help him. Mr. Stark, we don’t feel so good either.

Also Read: ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ — That Crazy Ending Was Part of Doctor Strange’s Plan

Doctor Stephen Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch)

Of all the people to disappear, Doctor Strange was seemingly the most calm and at peace. He spent part of “Infinity War” viewing potential futures with the Time Stone, and so it’s safe to say that losing to Thanos, and then apparently dying, were actually part of his long-view plan to win the day. We just have no idea how.

Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson)

Nick Fury’s disappearance happened in the “Infinity War” post-credits scene. He had just long enough as he vanished to realize what was happening and to summon help from a source we haven’t seen before: Captain Marvel (Brie Larson).

Maria Hill (Cobie Smulders)

Former SHIELD agent and Fury’s long-time bodyguard and right-hand woman, Maria and Fury’s disappearance likely severs the Avengers from any lingering SHIELD infrastructure that might have helped them in “Avengers 4.”

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Hank Pym (Michael Douglas)

“Ant-Man and the Wasp” didn’t catch up to the events of “Infinity War” until its post-credits scene, after Hank and his daughter Hope were finally reunited with his wife, Janet, the original Wasp. Unfortunately, they didn’t have long together.

Hope van Dyne (Evangeline Lilly)

Hope went right along with her father, and seemingly no one in the Ant-Man crew had any idea that the events of “Infinity War” were taking place in Wakanda during the end of “Ant-Man and the Wasp.”

Janet van Dyne (Michelle Pfeiffer)

After 30 years stuck in the Quantum Realm, Janet was rescued with just a few days before Thanos’ attack zapped her out of existence. That’s a pretty big bummer.

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Characters who are definitely still kicking

While Thanos managed to kill a whole bunch of people, he didn’t kill everyone — just half of everyone. That means quite a few heroes are still alive. We don’t know about the fates of a lot of folks — like Pepper Potts (Gwyneth Paltrow) or Peter Parker’s pal Ned (Jacob Batalon). Here’s the list of people we know for sure didn’t disintegrate.

Steve Rogers, Captain America (Chris Evans)

The First Avenger lost his best friend to Thanos, but more than that, he failed in a way Cap has never suffered before. His final line of the movie — a simple, “Oh god” — was just as horrifying as watching so many heroes fade away.

Tony Stark, Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.)

Tony has been traumatized by his fear of something like Thanos’ invasion, and Tony’s inability to stop it, since “The Avengers” and the alien attack Loki (Tom Hiddleston) led on New York. That attack was backed by Thanos, and it seems with the Mad Titan’s arrival, Tony’s worst fears have been realized.

Also Read: ‘Avengers: Infinity War’: Here’s What the Comics Might Tell Us About Tony Stark’s Kid

Thor (Chris Hemsworth)

Thor’s track through “Infinity War” is incredibly tragic, and it’s clear in a few scenes that he’s just barely holding himself together after the losses of Loki and Heimdall (Idris Elba). After finally becoming the leader his people needed, Thor was unable to save them, and he seems to feel responsible for letting his barely contained pain control him such that he struck Thanos with Stormbreaker in the chest, so he would suffer, rather than the head to kill him instantly.

Natasha Romanoff, Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson)

Natasha has been making major strides to become a better person in the post-SHIELD era, but it was clear that losing to Thanos hit her very hard.

Bruce Banner, the Incredible Hulk (Mark Ruffalo)

His constant struggles with the Hulk side of his personality left Banner struggling in “Infinity War” between not wanting to be the Hulk, and needing the Hulk. Losing to Thanos is definitely going to exacerbate their internal conflict.

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James Rhodes, War Machine (Don Cheadle)

Rhody fought alongside Cap and crew in Wakanda, and became closer friends with Sam Wilson during the battle. Losing Sam hit Rhody hard, as did the fact that Thanos was able to do something so devastating, and the Avengers weren’t able to stop him.

General Okoye (Danai Gurira)

Okoye’s loyalty to T’Challa, and more importantly, the throne of Wakanda, is a defining part of her identity — so when her king vanished before her eyes, she was obviously and incredibly crushed.

Also Read: ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ – James Gunn Reveals What Groot Told Rocket at the End (Spoiler!)

M’Baku (Winston Duke)

M’Baku also stands as a fierce leader and protector of his people, and while we didn’t spend much time with him in “Infinity War,” it was clear losing so many with no way of stopping it was a huge blow.

Rocket Raccoon (Bradley Cooper)

Rocket lost just about everyone to Thanos, though at the end of “Infinity War” he doesn’t even know the extent of it, since he was on Earth with Thor. It’s losing Groot, his best friend and, in a real sense, his son, that ravages Rocket — and one wonders how he’ll be able to recover.

Nebula (Karen Gillan)

No stranger to pain and loss, Nebula was the most stoic of the heroes. After arriving on Titan to try to kill Thanos, she watched the disintegration knowing full well what had happened. Nebula seems likely to be the one character whose life isn’t upended by the snap. She has one goal: kill Thanos. Nothing has changed that.

Also Read: Nebula of ‘Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2’ Should Get Her Own Movie (Commentary)

Scott Lang, Ant-Man (Paul Rudd)

While Scott wasn’t present for “Infinity War,” like everyone in the universe, he was affected by it. Unfortunately, Thanos snapped his fingers exactly when Scott was briefly diving into the Quantum Realm during the post-credits scene of “Ant-Man and the Wasp.” Since Hank, Hope and Janet disappeared back at normal size, there seems to be no one to pull Scott out of the Quantum Realm, apparently marooning him there. Or is there….

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(Note: This post contains spoilers for the end of “Ant-Man and the Wasp” and “Avengers: Infinity War,” so proceed with caution!)

The world of the Marvel Cinematic Universe was massively altered by “Avengers: Infinity War,” but how the situation with Thanos will be resolved in “Avengers 4” still isn’t clear. With “Ant-Man and the Wasp,” we might have a few more clues of what to expect in the next “Avengers,” though.

In “Infinity War,” Thanos (Josh Brolin) manages to gather all six super-powerful Infinity Stones and use them to enact his ultimate plan: Eliminate half the life in the universe. That caused a huge number of people to turn to dust — including heroes like Spider-Man, Black Panther, Doctor Strange and most of the Guardians of the Galaxy.

“Ant-Man and the Wasp” doesn’t catch up to the events of the movie until its mid-credits scene. In it, we see Ant-Man, Scott Lang (Paul Rudd), head back into the Quantum Realm to gather “healing particles” to help Ghost (Hannah John-Kamen). While he’s down there, everyone back in the real world and who’s there to help him — Hope van Dyne (Evangeline Lilly), Janet van Dyne (Michelle Pfeiffer) and Hank Pym (Michael Douglas) are turned to dust by Thanos’ finger snap. Scott is seemingly trapped in the Quantum Realm with no way to get back.

Also Read: 13 Major Lingering Questions We Have After Seeing ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’

That setup seems like it’ll lead Ant-Man directly into “Avengers 4,” with a few clues as to how he could potentially be a huge part of that movie and the ultimate solution to the Thanos problem. The Quantum Realm could hold several possibilities, including a connection with the Soul Stone, and even time travel. And these are our guesses about what the future will hold based on that “Ant-Man and the Wasp” cliffhanger.

A Soul Stone connection

We don’t know all the ins and outs of the Soul Stone yet, but we can make a few guesses based on the stone’s properties in the Marvel comics universe. In the “Infinity Gauntlet” comics on which “Infinity War” is based, the Soul Stone actually absorbs and houses the souls of the people “killed” by it — so everyone dusted by Thanos is presumably actually still alive in the Soul Realm inside the stone. Basically, the stone makes up its own separate universe or alternate small dimension.

We see some evidence of this in “Infinity War,” when, after the big snap, Thanos briefly finds himself in the orange-tinted Soul Realm, where he speaks with a younger version of Gamora (Zoe Saldana). If the movies are like the comics, then that really is Gamora’s soul, trapped in the Soul Stone thanks to Thanos’ actions.

Also Read: All 52 Marvel Movies Ranked, Including ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’

The Quantum Realm also seems to represent a universe or dimension unto itself, with its own set of rules — as opposed to simply being just a really tiny aspect of our universe. It seems very possible that the Quantum Realm may contain a link to the Soul Realm, a path through which Ant-Man can re-establish contact with the heroes who’ve disappeared from the rest of the universe. In the comics, characters in the Soul Realm are part of the fight against Thanos, so having a way to contact and interact with them could be the turning point in the story of “Avengers 4.”

Going back in time

Right before Scott goes into the tunnel to the Quantum Realm, Janet warns him about stuff he should avoid within it. One of the things she pointedly mentions: time vortexes.

We don’t know much about whatever Janet is referring to by “time vortex,” but that sure sounds like an anomaly that could affect not only Scott’s perception of time, but where he ends up in the timeline should he be sucked into one. We’ve been told before that “time and space” work differently in the Quantum Realm. And quantum physics have their own implications in real-life discussions of potential time travel. In general, the Quantum Realm carries a lot of possibilities as far as the potential for Scott, and maybe other characters, to go back in time to warn the Avengers about Thanos.

Also Read: ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’ Mid-Credits Scene Explained: What Is a Time Vortex?

The “time vortex” line is a particularly big potential clue. It could just be a throwaway line on Janet’s part to tell us, the audience, that there’s a lot of weird stuff down there in the Quantum Realm. But it also could be Marvel suggesting that Janet has experienced the effects of a time vortex, and that’s how she knows about them. Really, one has to wonder how Janet would even know what weird thing in the Quantum Realm is a time vortex unless she’d seen one in action or fallen into one herself, since so much of the Quantum Realm just looks like trippy weirdness.

If Janet did fall into a time vortex, it might explain how she managed to spend 30 years down in the Quantum Realm and survive (because seriously, what did she eat down there). We also know that Janet is in “Avengers 4,” so the possibility that, beyond just the expectation that she and everyone else turned to dust will return, she traveled through time and interacted with the past is definitely out there.

Ant-Man and the Captain (Marvel)

Ant-Man experiencing some time travel would fit nicely with what we know about the next two Marvel Cinematic Universe movies: “Avengers 4,” and, before that, “Captain Marvel.” IMDb listings — which, we should note, are not always reliable — for “Avengers 4” list characters like “1970s Scientist,” which have given fans the theory that it might have some time travel involved, and paparazzi photos from the set seemed to show characters like the Winter Soldier (Sebastian Stan) popping up during the Battle of New York from “The Avengers.”

Also Read: ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’ May Have Just Set Up These ‘Avengers 4’ Time Travel Plots

“Captain Marvel” also has a tie to the past: it takes place in the 1990s, years before the Avengers appeared on the scene. From what we know about the movie, it seems like the titular Captain (Brie Larson) has a very big link to Thanos thanks to Mar-Vell (Jude Law), an alien superhero who winds up on Earth during the movie. Mar-Vell is an old enemy of Thanos, so he could not only give Larson’s character, Carol Danvers, her powers, but also impart on her some knowledge about how to deal with Thanos.

Ant-Man zapping through time thanks to the Quantum Realm could be the big connection between “Captain Marvel” and “Avengers 4.” We know Captain Marvel will factor into the final battle with Thanos thanks to the post-credits scene in “Infinity War,” in which the final act of Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) is to contact Danvers with a modified pager before he disappears from existence. Time travel could easily be a part of all these stories, and what’s more, the reason that “Ant-Man and the Wasp” had to be released after “Infinity War” but before “Avengers 4.”

“Avengers: Infinity War” changed everything for the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and we have some ideas about how “Ant-Man and the Wasp” could be setting up “Avengers 4.” Click here for an explanation of that mid-credits scene and what a “time vortex” might be all about. Read this for some ways Ant-Man’s potential time travel adventures could impact both of next year’s big MCU films. Check out our speculation on how Ant-Man could pop up in “Captain Marvel.” And click here for a chat with director Peyton Reed into the role the Quantum Realm might continue to play in the greater MCU. There are also quite a few lingering questions from “Ant-Man and the Wasp,” which we explore here.

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(Note: This post contains spoilers for the end of “Ant-Man and the Wasp” and “Avengers: Infinity War.” Just FYI.)

We expected, after seeing “Avengers: Infinity War” back in April, that both “Ant-Man and the Wasp” and “Captain Marvel” would play into the story being told across “Infinity War” and next year’s “Avengers 4.” That seemed self-evident — Marvel surely would not put those two movies in between those “Avengers” films if they weren’t important.

But what we did not expect is that “Ant-Man and the Wasp” and “Captain Marvel” might interact directly with each other.

Also Read: 13 Major Lingering Questions We Have After Seeing ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’

This is just guesswork right now, but a very conspicuous line from the mid-credits scene in “Ant-Man and the Wasp” definitely sets up the possibility that Ant-Man himself will manage to show up in “Captain Marvel” even though that film is set decades before Scott Lang (Paul Rudd) ever donned the Ant-Man suit.

That line comes courtesy of Janet van Dyne (Michelle Pfeiffer), who casually drops a warning for Scott just before he returns to the Quantum Realm: “Don’t get sucked into a time vortex.”

That’s an absolutely crazy concept to bring up for the first time in that moment — it’s just seconds before Janet, Hope (Evangeline Lilly) and Hank Pym (Michael Douglas) fall victim to the finger snap Thanos (Josh Brolin) used to eliminate half the life in the universe in “Infinity War,” which maroons Scott in the Quantum Realm. How will Scott get back to the normal world? Well, maybe by getting sucked into a time vortex.

Also Read: ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’ May Have Just Set Up These ‘Avengers 4’ Time Travel Plots

Of course, we have no idea how a time vortex would even work or what it entails. But if we want to go with the idea that getting sucked into one might dump him out in the normal world at both an unknown time and place, the time when and a place where the events of “Captain Marvel” happen is as natural a landing spot as any.

We should qualify this by pointing that it’s unlikely that Ant-Man will have a major part to play in “Captain Marvel” because we would probably know if Paul Rudd had been spending a lot of time on that film’s set. Marvel has been really good about keeping things under wraps on “Avengers 4,” but even before we saw “Ant-Man and the Wasp,” we were thinking about MCU time travel because leaked “Avengers 4” set photos seemed to show our heroes revisiting past MCU battles — with characters who weren’t present the first time around. So if Rudd — or, say, a stuntman wearing the Ant-Man suit — had spent a month on the “Captain Marvel” set, it probably would have leaked.

So, if Scott Lang does pop up, it would more likely be as a cameo, maybe as part of a mid-credits stinger leading into “Avengers 4.” Marvel is certainly adept at keeping that kind of thing a secret — we had no clue, for example, that Red Skull was going to appear in “Infinity War.”

Also Read: ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’ Mid-Credits Scene Explained: What Is a Time Vortex?

Regardless, the clue makes some story sense as the threads of “Ant-Man and the Wasp” converge with “Infinity War.” Given that “Infinity War” and “Avengers 4” are a culmination of everything that’s happened in the MCU up to this point, Ant-Man’s absence from the proceedings so far has been conspicuous. Releasing “Ant-Man and the Wasp” between the two “Avengers” films suggests that Ant-Man’s part to play will be important to the conclusion of the Thanos story, and that almost definitely means it’ll be part of reversing the effects of Thanos’ finger snap.

Leaving Scott in the Quantum Realm on a cliffhanger is like a big neon sign to audiences that Scott’s predicament will be essential to “Avengers 4.” And the post-credits scene of “Infinity War” in which Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) contacted Carol Danvers (Brie Larson) similarly shows the extreme importance of the events of that movie.

The question is, what will Ant-Man’s role be in “Captain Marvel?” Scott was lost in the Quantum Realm when Hank, Hope and Janet disappeared thanks to Thanos’ actions, but Scott never actually saw that happen — so as far as we know, he doesn’t actually know about it. That means, at least right now, that Scott can’t tip off Carol about Thanos in the future, which seems like it would be a logical role for a time-traveling hero to fill. Still, Ant-Man’s appearance in the 1990s could provide him a way to get rescued from the Quantum Realm back in 2018.

Then again, maybe it’s Captain Marvel who could provide key information to Ant-Man to take back to the future with him. Carol got her powers from an alien named Mar-Vell, played in “Captain Marvel” by Jude Law, and in the comics, Mar-Vell has been standing in Thanos’ way for a while. It could be that Carol will send Ant-Man back to the future with an inside scoop that could help deal with the Thanos situation while the heroes wait for her to arrive on the scene.

Also Read: How Will ‘Captain Marvel’ Play Into That Wild ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ Ending?

Or maybe this is a completely wrong guess and the time travel shenanigans we’re assuming Ant-Man is about to go on will skip over “Captain Marvel” entirely. At the very least, we’ll find out in March 2019.

“Avengers: Infinity War” changed everything for the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and we have some ideas about how “Ant-Man and the Wasp” could be setting up “Avengers 4.” Click here for an explanation of that mid-credits scene and what a “time vortex” might be all about. Read this for some ways Ant-Man’s potential time travel adventures could impact both of next year’s big MCU films. There are also quite a few lingering questions from “Ant-Man and the Wasp,” which we explore here.

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(Note: Major spoilers for the end of “Ant-Man and the Wasp” found herein, as well as spoilers for the end of “Avengers: Infinity War.” You’ve been warned!)

Marvel has been pretty good about keeping “Avengers 4” details under wraps for the most part, but they haven’t been airtight. Some set photos have leaked that indicate strongly that time travel will be involved (we’ll spare you the details in case you don’t want to know anything concrete), and “Ant-Man and the Wasp” certainly provides the means for getting some kind of time travel party started.

The Quantum Realm is the key to this line of thinking — folks in both “Ant-Man” movies make offhand comments about time being weird there, but the most pointed line comes right at the end of “Ant-Man and the Wasp” during the mid-credits scene when Janet (Michelle Pfeiffer) gives Scott (Paul Rudd) a strange warning right as he’s about to travel through the quantum tunnel: “Don’t get sucked into a time vortex.”

Also Read: 13 Major Lingering Questions We Have After Seeing ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’

Now, that is an extremely interesting concept for Janet to bring up right before she, Hope (Evangeline Lilly) and Hank (Michael Douglas) are turned to dust by the finger snap Thanos (Josh Brolin) used to eliminate half the life in the universe in “Avengers: Infinity War,” marooning Scott in the Quantum Realm. And we can’t help but assume that reference means that Scott will definitely get sucked into a time vortex, and it’ll likely play into MCU events from here forward.

There are any number of ways that Quantum Realm time travel could matter hugely in the resolution to the war with Thanos, and we’ve come up with a few possibilities for how this will play out. Now, we’re not going to guess here about how “Avengers 4” will end — that level of speculation is way beyond this nugget we were given in “Ant-Man and the Wasp.”

But, for now, we’re going to assume that Scott being stuck in the Quantum Realm is the incident that sets the events of “Avengers 4” in motion, and so here we’re going to think about the ways Scott’s second visit to the Quantum Realm will play out. We’re not saying any of them will definitely happen — but from our view, with so little info about where all this is going, these feel like the most likely possibilities, either individually or in tandem with each other. So let’s dig in.

Also Read: ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’ Mid-Credits Scene Explained: What Is a Time Vortex?

1. Scott will encounter a past version of Janet in the Quantum Realm

All that talk about how time works differently in the Quantum Realm has thus far just been talk — we haven’t actually seen any evidence of time weirdness down there yet. Janet apparently even aged normally in the Quantum Realm, which seems a bit odd, and she discusses the length of time she spent in the Quantum Realm in the same terms as Hope and Hank do, which suggests she experienced it the same way they did.

But there’s one very important quantum concept that would give us some wacky Quantum Realm time stuff and also provide the impetus for Scott to go on his time journey: the idea that time is not linear in the Quantum Realm.

The concept here, which relies on actual quantum physics, is that in the Quantum Realm, all times are happening simultaneously, and that physical locations within the Quantum Realm also correspond with different times — like, for example, your bedroom in your home being 2018 but your bathroom being in 1918. Basically, the Quantum Realm’s weirdness creates an intersection of all those times and locations, which Scott could travel between freely if he knew how. Which would mean, then, that Janet is and will always be down there in certain locations because they’re different points in time, even though she returned to the normal world. Thus, Scott could meet her in one of those locations that also includes a different bit of time.

Also Read: The Complete Timeline of Marvel Cinematic Universe Movies, From ‘Iron Man’ to ‘Infinity War’

That could potentially give Scott access to a person with intimate knowledge of the Quantum Realm, as well as Quantum Realm powers, to bring to bear in the conflict with Thanos in 2018.

2. Wherever Scott time travels to, Janet goes with him

Given the way Hank and Janet have described the Quantum Realm, it seems a little bit odd that Janet aged normally in the three decades she was down there. But what if she wasn’t actually in the Quantum Realm for that long? What if, instead, past Janet met present Scott and went on a time travel adventure with him back to the normal world and that’s why she aged (and also, maybe, how she managed to survive in a place where food and water could seemingly not exist)?

The logic for this involves a time loop, because there has to be a reason why Janet returned to the Quantum Realm, where Hank and Hope would eventually rescue her, instead of just finding Hank and Hope in the real world after escaping the Quantum Realm. One easy answer: Wherever Scott and Janet pop out of the Quantum Realm is a time before Janet was lost within it. If that’s the case, she’d find herself in a time where there would be two Janets: the original, who is living her life as the superhero Wasp, wife to Hank and mother to Hope, and the Janet from the future who traveled with Scott. If the future Janet interfered with her past self or her family, she would upset the series of events that led to her being in the Quantum Realm in the first place — just like how Marty McFly accidentally messed up the meeting of his parents in “Back to the Future.”

Also Read: ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ – James Gunn Reveals What Groot Told Rocket at the End (Spoiler!)

If the events of “Ant-Man and the Wasp” never occurred, then Scott would not have been marooned in the Quantum Realm — so in essence, Janet would have to return to the Quantum Realm in order to make sure that the chain of events could be set in motion.

All that could mean that, like Doctor Strange, Janet has potentially even seen the end of the war (or at least, a potential end) before it was even fought, thanks to her ability to time travel. And that could provide the heroes with essential information in “Avengers 4.”

3. Scott could pop up in “Captain Marvel”

Next year’s “Captain Marvel” is set in the 1990s, a time period unexplored in the Marvel Cinematic Universe thus far. And so if Ant-Man is going to travel through time, it would be perfectly reasonable to expect that’s where he could end up. Now, it doesn’t seem particularly likely that he will be a major player in that film’s events because we would probably know if Paul Rudd had been spending a lot of time on the “Captain Marvel” set, but he definitely could pop up in a mid-credits cliffhanger. What that sort of appearance would mean for the greater story is tough to grasp, though, but at least showing up in the past could provide a means for someone to save Scott from the Quantum Realm in the future.

Also Read: Everything That Happened in ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ May Have Been Part of a Cosmic Test

4. Scott could give Captain Marvel the heads-up about Thanos — somehow

Scott having access to time travel ahead of “Avengers 4” definitely feels like it’ll have some major role to play in reversing the events of “Infinity War” and saving all the characters lost to Thanos’ snap and the Infinity Stones. How that might work, however, is a very open question. And if Scott shows up in “Captain Marvel,” the natural assumption would be that his usefulness will be in alerting Captain Marvel to the Thanos threat in the future. The trouble is, as of the end of “Ant-Man and the Wasp,” Scott doesn’t know about Thanos at all.

We have a pretty good idea that “Captain Marvel” will be integral to dealing with Thanos, both because of the “Infinity War” post-credits scene in which Nick Fury contacts her, and because of her backstory in the comics. Carol Danvers, who becomes Captain Marvel, gets her powers from a Kree alien called Mar-Vell, the original Captain Marvel, who’s played by Jude Law in the movie. In the Marvel comics, Mar-Vell has a history fighting Thanos; Mar-Vell dies after Carol gets her powers, passing the mantle of Captain Marvel on to her.

We also know that, obviously, Captain Marvel has not been an active part of the MCU for the past 10 years. Something had to take her out of the proceedings; if she was around, it would make sense for Nick Fury to have contacted her during “The Avengers” to help fight off the alien invasion of New York, for instance. Carol must have something important to be doing. Maybe that thing is her leaving Earth to find a way to beat Thanos or reverse the power of the Infinity Stones — thanks to information she got from Scott after he traveled through time to the past from 2018.

Also Read: Here’s What ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ Could Mean for the Hulk’s Future

“Ant-Man and the Wasp” ends with Scott being stuck in the Quantum Realm, after Hope, Hank and Janet all disappear, but Scott doesn’t have any information about what happened to them. So while it makes sense for him to warn Captain Marvel about Thanos in the past, there’s a missing piece about how he would know enough about the situation in 2018 to do that.

Janet’s line about getting sucked into a time vortex might hold a clue. It suggests that falling into one is accidental, and likely without control for where one might wind up if they do. Thus, Scott’s time travel could be uncontrolled, maybe taking him to multiple different time periods, possibly even to the future. Similarly, if Scott runs into a version of Janet still trapped in the Quantum Realm thanks to nonlinear time, she might have seen the Thanos situation play out, and could pass that info along.

We don’t know, but what we do know is, Scott traveling through time doesn’t make a ton of sense if he can’t do anything to change the future by altering the past. His interaction with Captain Marvel could be a great excuse for her to leave Earth, taking her out of the MCU until “Avengers 4,” though.

“Avengers: Infinity War” changed everything for the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and we have some ideas about how “Ant-Man and the Wasp” could be setting up “Avengers 4.” Click here for an explanation of that mid-credits scene and what a “time vortex” might be all about. Check out our speculation on how Ant-Man could pop up in “Captain Marvel.”  There are also quite a few lingering questions from “Ant-Man and the Wasp,” which we explore here.

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‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’ Mid-Credits Scene Explained: What Is a Time Vortex?

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‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’ Mid-Credits Scene Explained: What Is a Time Vortex?

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(Note: This post contains major spoilers for the end of “Ant-Man and the Wasp.” Read on at your own risk!)

So here we are, at the first Marvel Cinematic Universe film after that completely bananas cliffhanger at the end of “Avengers: Infinity War.” And while “Ant-Man and the Wasp” largely takes place prior to the war with Thanos (Josh Brolin), it does eventually catch up to the finger snap and ends on a cliffhanger of its own.

Technically, the entire film goes by without so much as a mention of any kind of invasion by the Black Order and their forces — it’s only in the mid-credits scene that “Ant-Man and the Wasp” gets its explicit tie to the MCU’s greater conflict.

Also Read: 13 Major Lingering Questions We Have After Seeing ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’

In that scene we see that Hank Pym (Michael Douglas) and the newly rescued Janet van Dyne (Michelle Pfeiffer) have seemingly shrunk down the quantum tunnel device so that a single person can travel through it. And that single person, in this instance, is Ant-Man (Paul Rudd) himself, who is heading down to the Quantum Realm to collect “healing particles” for Ghost (Hannah John-Kamen).

But while Ant-Man is down there, the climax of “Infinity War” finally occurs — and Janet, Hank and Hope (Evangeline Lilly) are all turned to dust. Ant-Man survives, but is now stuck in the Quantum Realm.

On its face, the post-credit scene suggests a couple of things. First, Ant-Man seemingly has no way out of the Quantum Realm, and since we’re now caught up to the ending of “Infinity War,” it seems that’s where we’ll find Scott at the start of that movie. Second, Ant-Man and co. are still in contact with Ghost and, as Scott mentions, she’s their new “friend.” Scott’s collecting those quantum healing particles for Ghost’s benefit. Since she’s still around, and apparently still has her phasing affliction, Ghost and Dr. Bill Foster (Laurence Fishburne) could potentially be part of the story going forward in “Avengers 4.”

Also Read: ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’ May Have Just Set Up These ‘Avengers 4’ Time Travel Plots

Now, let’s back up a moment. Just before Ant-Man takes that fateful journey, Janet warns him about a couple things. First, she says to watch out for those microscoping manatee-looking things called tardigrades, which Janet says will eat him if he lets them get close enough. Second, and probably much more important, she warns him to not “get sucked into a time vortex.”

This is the first time such a concept is mentioned, though both Janet and Hank have discussed the fact that time does not work the same way in the Quantum Realm as it does in the normal world. But we have not seen any sort of demonstration of any real time weirdness. A so-called “time vortex,” however, would certainly fit that bill.

That said, it’s tough to guess what exactly a time vortex is or how it works. Presumably, it would make an object or person sucked into it travel through time. The big question is what else it does. Would a person sucked through a time vortex stay in the Quantum Realm? We would guess not, because in theory any time you move while you’re in the Quantum Realm you would be time traveling. It’s also doesn’t really change the situation much storywise if Scott is able to travel in time in the Quantum Realm — but stays stuck in the Quantum Realm.

Also Read: How Will ‘Captain Marvel’ Play Into That Wild ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ Ending?

A time vortex that transports Ant-Man to another point in time and space — probably the past — would be convenient for the goings on of both “Avengers 4” and “Captain Marvel.” First, we know Captain Marvel (Brie Larson) is a big deal for the story of “Avengers 4,” because Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) uses his last moments on Earth to contact her for help in the “Infinity War” post-credits scene. We also know for sure that “Captain Marvel” is set in the 1990s, so if Ant-Man was to wind up in the past, it would easily track for him to pop up in Captain Marvel’s story.

Captain Marvel acting on info about Thanos in the future would make sense, actually: She hasn’t been a part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe up to now, and finding out that Thanos was coming and that she would need some way to counteract the Infinity Stones, or otherwise stop him, would give her a good excuse to leave Earth and go in search of knowledge or a weapon of some kind. That would explain her absence between the 1990s and 2018.

Another possibility: Ant-Man’s time travel could directly affect the story of “Avengers 4,” giving the Avengers a new path to victory against Thanos. Since it’s clear that even big bands of superheroes were unable to stand against the Mad Titan at full strength, time travel might give them an opportunity to undo the ending of “Infinity War” by beating Thanos before he had an army or the Infinity Stones. That could potentially stop “Infinity War” from ever happening. Even just a warning from Ant-Man about what’s coming could massively alter the timeline. We know that Thanos was on the scene even as far back as “The Avengers,” so presumably time travel could alter much of the MCU.

Also Read: 13 Major Lingering Questions We Have After Seeing ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’

Of course, the issue as it stands right now is that Scott does not know what happened up in the normal world — he’s just stuck down there in the Quantum Realm clueless about the war.

At least for now.

“Avengers: Infinity War” changed everything for the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and we have some ideas about how “Ant-Man and the Wasp” could be setting up “Avengers 4.” Read this for some ways Ant-Man’s potential time travel adventures could impact both of next year’s big MCU films. Check out our speculation on how Ant-Man could pop up in “Captain Marvel.” There are also quite a few lingering questions from “Ant-Man and the Wasp,” which we explore here.

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(Major spoilers ahead for “Ant-Man and the Wasp.” Just so you know.)
“Ant-Man and the Wasp,” the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s follow-up to “Avengers: Infinity War,” is finally here. But while it certainly ties i…

Does ‘Ant-Man and The Wasp’ Have a Post-Credit Scene?

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

“Ant-Man and the Wasp” catches up with two superhero characters who were, somewhat pointedly, not part of the big superhero team-up movie that acted as a culmination of the Marvel Cinematic Universe: “Avengers: Infinity War.”

That doesn’t mean that Scott Lang, a.k.a. Ant-Man (Paul Rudd) and Hope van Dyne, a.k.a. the Wasp (Evangeline Lilly) were idle, though. They got up to their own adventure while the rest of the MCU was dealing with the situation with Thanos (Josh Brolin) and the Infinity Stones. Marvel has been teasing how “Ant-Man and the Wasp” will tie into the greater “Avengers” story pretty much since “Infinity War” was released, but up to now, there was only a single line detailing what happened with Scott since the events of “Captain America: Civil War” two years previous.

But while “Ant-Man and the Wasp” sheds some light on the situation with some characters, there are two big MCU movies on the horizon: “Captain Marvel” and “Avengers 4.” The MCU is well-known for its post-credits teasers that sometimes link one film series to the rest, and with the looming specter of “Infinity War” over the whole MCU franchise, that raises a very important question: Does “Ant-Man and the Wasp” have a post-credit scene?

The answer is a resounding “yes” — as has become Marvel tradition, there is both a mid-credits scene and a post-credit scene, and you’ll definitely want to stay in your seat for both.

Also Read: After ‘Avengers: Infinity War,’ What in the Hell Happens Now?

(Spoilers beyond this point for the post-credits scenes of “Ant-Man and the Wasp!”)

While “Ant-Man and the Wasp” is pretty much a self-contained story, there is a link to the greater happenings of the MCU. That link doesn’t come until the very end of the story, though: Marvel Studios held back the impact of Thanos’ actions on the Ant-Man crew until the movie’s mid-credits scene.

It finds Hope, Hank Pym (Michael Douglas) and Janet van Dyne (Michelle Pfeiffer) sending Scott into the Quantum Realm with the use of the quantum tunnel Hope and Hank built during the course of the movie, shrunk down to fit in the back of the van belonging to Luis (Michael Peña). The plan is for Scott to gather quantum “healing particles” that will help stabilize Ghost (Hannah John-Kamen) — who Scott calls “our new Ghost friend,” suggesting she has become an ally to the heroes.

Also Read: How Will ‘Captain Marvel’ Play Into That Wild ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ Ending?

Just before Scott goes through the tunnel, Janet gives him a warning about what he might find there: that he should avoid the “tardigrade fields,” where the microscopic creatures called tardigrades might try to eat him, and to not fall into a “time vortex” — which sounds an awful lot like a potential tease for Ant-Man’s future in “Avengers 4,” possibly related to time travel.

As soon as Scott has what he needs, however, the scene catches up to the final moments of “Infinity War,” when Thanos’ finger snap causes half of all life in the universe to cease to exist. We see what happens at the same time as Thanos gets his wish in Wakanda, and among the casualties are Hope, Hank and Janet. The scene leaves Scott seemingly stuck in the Quantum Realm with no one at the controls to bring him back to normal size. It seems it might not be until “Avengers 4” that we find out how Scott will make it back home.

There’s also the post-credits scene at the end of the movie, which might hint at who else fell victim to Thanos. It heads back into Scott’s house, where the giant ant Hope left behind to fool Scott’s ankle monitor is hanging out, playing Scott’s electronic drum set. It’s a continuation of one of the jokes in “Ant-Man and the Wasp,” but the camera panning over a TV set with its feed off the air suggests the wide-ranging aftermath of Thanos’ actions. It’s also somewhat pointed that Luis isn’t at home — here’s hoping he was in the lucky half of humanity.

Also Read: Everything That Happened in ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ May Have Been Part of a Cosmic Test

“Ant-Man and the Wasp” ends with one last final joke, as well. Marvel traditionally leaves off each MCU movie with a message that the characters of the film will be back. “Infinity War” ended with the joke, “Thanos will return,” but “Ant-Man and the Wasp” is less funny and more heart-wrenching. It ends with the message, “Ant-Man and the Wasp will return.” After a moment, though, the period becomes a question mark, leaving the fates of the characters up in the air.

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Thanos won the “Infinity War.” Half of the universe is dead. Sounds like a great time for the Marvel Cinematic Universe to have a small-scale comedy, right?
Taking place just prior to the shocking events of the latest “Avengers”…

‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’ Film Review: Paul Rudd’s Shrinking Hero Returns for Buzzier Sequel

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Perhaps the best way to approach “Ant-Man and the Wasp,” the sequel to the 2015 Marvel Cinematic Universe adventure that introduced the shrinking superhero, is as a Disney movie rather than a Marvel one. And when I say “Disney movie,” I mean a very specific kind: the goofy Dexter Riley comedies.

From 1969 to 1975, Kurt Russell played affable college student Dexter, who kept running afoul of science experiments that rendered him strong, super-smart or even invisible. Substitute Paul Rudd’s amiable ex-con Scott Lang for Dexter — with Michael Douglas subbing for scientist William Schallert, and Walton Goggins taking the Keenan Wynn/Cesar Romero role of the nefarious mobster — and “Ant-Man and the Wasp” is basically “The Computer Wore Tennis Shoes” for the 21st century.

Mind you, I mean this as a compliment; after a rough start in the previous entry, director Peyton Reed (“Down With Love”) seems much more comfortable balancing wacky antics, familial bonds and over-the-top superhero set pieces this time around. (Whether or not the problems of “Ant-Man” stem from Reed taking over for a dismissed Edgar Wright will be debated by future MCU historians.) And if the results feel a little slight, well, maybe we could all use a breather after the heavy stakes of “Avengers: Infinity War.”

Watch Video: New ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’ Teaser Unleashes Ghost

Without getting into details: Yes, “Ant-Man and the Wasp” does tie in to those apocalyptic events. But you were planning on sitting through the closing credits anyway, so that’s hardly a spoiler.

The screenplay by a quintet of writers (including Rudd) doesn’t skimp on conflict or incident: Scott is nearing the end of his two-year house arrest over his actions in “Captain America: Civil War” when he has a dream about Janet Van Dyne (Michelle Pfeiffer); like Scott’s Ant-Man, she used her costume’s shrinking device to “slip between the molecules,” but unlike Scott, she never made her way back to normal size.

Watch Video: ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’ ‘Connects Directly to Avengers 4,’ Says Kevin Feige

On the lam from the FBI, Henry Pym (Michael Douglas) and Hope Van Dyne (Evangeline Lilly) — Janet’s husband and daughter, respectively — have been working in a secret lab to bring Janet back, and Scott’s dream provides what might be the last piece of the puzzle. But while the Feds close in on our heroes — Hope has inherited her mother’s mantle as the flying, stinging Wasp — they’ve also got to fight off Goggins’ weaselly techno-thief while also contending with Ghost (Hannah John-Kamen), a costumed villain who has her own reasons for wanting to grab the Pym tech for herself.

Interspersed with all this plot are sweet moments between Scott and his daughter Cassie (Abby Ryder Fortson, “Togetherness”); goofy interactions with his fellow reformed criminals Luis (Michael Peña), Kurt (David Dastmalchian) and Dave (Tip “T.I.” Harris); witty banter with a nerdy FBI agent (Randall Park); and plenty of slapstick gags about large things becoming small, and vice versa. There’s even a car chase through San Francisco involving vehicles, people and objects rapidly changing size, and while it won’t rival the classic chases from “Bullitt” or “What’s Up, Doc?” it’s still a skillful balance of thrills and laughs.

Also Read: ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’ on Track for ‘Avengers’-Boosted $75 Million Box Office Debut

With the notable exception of Lilly, who seems to be taking the proceedings far more seriously than her co-stars, the cast gamely juggles everything the movie throws at them. Rudd has been a master of this brand of Everyman deadpan for decades, and while I found Peña’s Luis grating in the previous go-round, he gets a truth-serum-inspired monologue here that’s a comic gem. Ryder Fortson is sweet without being cloying — it helps that Rudd is great with kids, as also evidenced in “Ideal Home” — and Laurence Fishburne swoops in to steal a scene or two as one of Henry’s former colleagues.

Visually, “Ant-Man and the Wasp” gets close to “Doctor Strange” levels of trippiness, particularly in that sub-atomic world where Janet is trapped. From random and kaleidoscopic fragments of light to some enormous, threatening dust mites, the film creates a whole weird and wonderful world that we can’t see. (Reed throws in the “universe in your fingernail” clip from “Animal House,” lest we miss the point.)

Ultimately, the film is hard to take seriously, even by MCU standards; we don’t really doubt whether or not Janet will be found since, hey, there’s Michelle Pfeiffer on the poster! But for audiences who like Marvel movies at their tongue-in-cheekiest, this sequel provides some breezy fun while we wait to find out just how permanent Thanos’ genocidal schemes really are. Dexter Riley would approve.



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One of the biggest questions coming out of “Avengers: Infinity War” — aside from where in the world could they possibly be going with this — is how “Ant-Man and the Wasp” fits into this whole thing. Next year’s…

New ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’ TV Spot Teases ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ Connection (Video)

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Marvel has been holding its cards very close to the vest with the marketing for “Ant-Man and the Wasp” — they’ve avoided even hinting at any big picture Marvel Cinematic Universe connections or even the fact that any part of this story will involve Janet Van Dyne, who has been lost in the “quantum realm” for decades. But they may be letting loose a little bit with this new spot, which aired during the World Cup match between Mexico and Germany Sunday morning.

The 30-second spot opens with a full ten seconds of footage from “Avengers: Infinity War,” with the narrator saying: “Everything you know, everything you’ve experienced, has all led to this.” And then it cuts to a scene in which Scott Lang (Paul Rudd) incredulously asks Luis (Michael Pena) why his desk is so small. It’s a fun spot, and you can watch it in the video embedded at the top of this post.

While the “Infinity War” stuff is almost certainly just a gag, this is the second time that the marketing folks at Marvel and Disney have tied the two films together somehow. A few days after “Infinity War” came out back in April, they dropped a sort of teaser for the second “Ant-Man and the Wasp” trailer in which a bunch of Marvel heroes cracked jokes about where the duo were during Thanos’ invasion of Earth.

Also Read: How Will ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’ Factor Into That Insane ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ Cliffhanger?

But nothing in any of the ads so far have given off any tangible hint of a connection. Or at least not that we can tell without having seen the movie — there’s always a chance that they’ve been showing us important things that we don’t yet know the significance of, like how the “Infinity War” marketing was full of shots of the very end of the movie.

But we know there’s way more to “Ant-Man and the Wasp” than the marketing has let on. They cast Michelle Pfeiffer as Janet Van Dyne, which means she’s in this movie — and she’s also in next year’s “Avengers 4,” so she’s definitely important.

It’s also logical to assume that Marvel would not follow up such a massive cliffhanger like the one “Infinity War” had with a totally irrelevant side movie. “Ant-Man and the Wasp” will almost certainly be an important piece of the larger MCU story.

Also Read: ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’: 7 Things We Learned From That Sick New Trailer

But until we actually see the whole movie with our own eyeballs, we’re stuck making wild guesses. Which we have done here at TheWrap. Click here for some of the possibilities we came up with for how “Ant-Man and the Wasp” may tie in to everything that went down in “Avengers: Infinity War.” You may also want to check out our discussion of how next year’s “Captain Marvel” film will fit in to all this.

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Michelle Pfeiffer joins Angelina Jolie in Disney’s Maleficent sequel

Read on: The A.V. Club.

Michelle Pfeiffer didn’t end up making her Marvel Cinematic Universe debut a little early, as rumors suggested she would, but now we know another place where she definitely will pop up: Maleficent 2. According to Entertainment Weekly, Disney made the n…

‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’: 7 Things We Learned From That Sick New Trailer

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The Marvel Cinematic Universe might have shaken things up with “Avengers: Infinity War,” but we won’t know how the Thanos situation shakes out until “Avengers 4” comes out next year. Meanwhile, we know that “Ant-Man and the Wasp,” hitting theaters in July, takes place both before and during “Infinity War” — unless Disney was messing with us yesterday — and probably has a big part to play in the fourth “Avengers” movie.

While the new trailer released Tuesday doesn’t give any clues as to how Ant-Man might help in the fight against Thanos (Josh Brolin), it does give a few important clues for what we can expect in the movie and elements that might be important to the overall MCU storyline. Here are seven big takeaways.

If you haven’t watched the trailer yet, you can do just that right here.

Also Read: How Will ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’ Factor Into That Insane ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ Cliffhanger?

1. The Quantum Realm appears to actually be a tiny universe like the comics

We knew the Quantum Realm would be a big deal in “Ant-Man and the Wasp,” since in “Ant-Man,” Hank Pym (Michael Douglas) realized that it was possible to get a person back from the super-tiny place. Janet van Dyne (Michelle Pfeiffer), Hope’s mother and Pym’ wife, was lost in the Quantum Realm years earlier, but Scott’s return made Pym think he could return to the Quantum Realm and potentially rescue her.

The trailer shows at least two people who have traveled to the Quantum Realm in Pym’s submersible visiting the realm and actually walking around in it, making it much more similar to the Microverse of the comics than we’ve previously seen. In the Marvel Comics universe, the Microverse is pretty much just another place in the multiverse, with people living there (and supervillains trying to take over).

It seems possible the Quantum Realm of the movies could as well, and that it could play a part in the conclusion of the Thanos story being told in “Avengers 4” — although it’s not yet even remotely clear how.

Check out our spoiler-filled look into how “Ant-Man and the Wasp” could play a role in the fight against Thanos by clicking here.

Also Read: New ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’ Trailer Drops, Does Not Reveal How It Ties Into ‘Infinity War’ (Video)

2. Ant-Man encountered….something in the Quantum Realm

Later on, the trailer includes a very quick shot of Ant-Man (Paul Rudd) floating in the Quantum Realm. While he’s there, something glowy and green, apparently with wings, whips past him at a high rate of speed.

While that could potentially be Janet van Dyne, the original Wasp, who was lost in the Quantum Realm, all that glowy energy and ridiculous speed seems to suggest it might be something else. Perhaps a native of the Quantum Realm?

If the Quantum Realm ends up being important to the battle against Thanos, which seems very likely given the release of “Ant-Man and the Wasp” between “Infinity War” and “Avengers 4,” then this might be a clue as to what, or maybe more accurately who, Ant-Man found there.

Also Read: ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’ Takes Place During ‘Avengers: Infinity War’

3. The Ghost’s phasing stuff seems like it could be important considering the Vision situation

We don’t know too much about the Ghost (Hannah John-Kamen), the character who this trailer seems to present as the primary villain of “Ant-Man and the Wasp,” except that she has the capability to make herself “intangible.”

In the trailer, that means zapping her way through walls and vehicles in order to punch and kick people beyond, making her tough to fight. There could be more to that whole “intangible” thing, though, given what a big part of “Avengers: Infinity War” Vision (Paul Bettany) was. Vision’s powers include being able to “phase” through solid matter, pretty much in the same way the Ghost can.

In “Infinity War,” bad guy Corvus Glaive (Michael Shaw) used a special blade on Vision to knock out his phasing powers in their very first fight. That might have been to keep Vision from getting away with the Mind Stone — or there could have been more to it.

It seems like if there was anything that might give Thanos a run for his money, it’s somebody who has the ability to become intangible. After all, apart from his Infinity Stone capabilities, Thanos is just a really strong bruiser of a guy, more or less like the Hulk. One wonders if the powers of the Infinity Stones would even work on someone who is technically intangible; some of them might (we saw the Space Stone cause the Hulkbuster armor to drift through solid matter briefly), but maybe not all of them. That could be a weakness Ant-Man and the Wasp could exploit if they’re able to get hold of the Ghost’s capabilities.

Also Read: ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ — Vision Probably Isn’t Completely Dead

4. Pym has apparently built multiple shrinking vehicles

After recruiting Scott as the new Ant-Man and Hope as the Wasp, it seems Pym got busy building them some new support equipment. That includes vehicles that include their own shrinking tech for use in the field.

In the past, Ant-Man was able to use his throwable Pym Discs to cause an object to shrink or grow briefly, but Pym’s vehicles look to be a lot more versatile and reliable. They also get similar benefits to Ant-Man and the Wasp when they shrink and grow, it seems, as we see when the growing Pym van flips its pursuer from underneath. Makes you wonder what other fantastic things Dr. Pym has put together over the last few years.

Also Read: How Will ‘Captain Marvel’ Play Into That Wild ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ Ending?

5. They’re still hiding whatever this movie has to do with Infinity War

Following “Avengers: Infinity War,” Marvel released a teaser ahead of the new “Ant-Man and the Wasp” asking the “Avengers” cast where Ant-Man and the Wasp were during “Infinity War.” The studio is teasing the “Ant-Man” sequel as answering that question, but we got no real new clues in the trailer at all.

We knew “Ant-Man and the Wasp” begins “in the aftermath of ‘Captain America: Civil War,’” but whatever portion of the story happens during “Infinity War” has yet to be revealed, and no real clues have been provided about what this movie has to do with the greater MCU situation.

The movie’s release between “Avengers: Infinity War” and “Avengers 4,” though, can’t be coincidental if it takes place during the battle with Thanos, though. There’s a significant reason why Ant-Man didn’t show up to fight the worst bad guy in the universe, and whatever he and the Wasp learn in their story will have to be significant to “Avengers 4.”

Also Read: ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ — Here’s What Happened Next in the Comic Book Version of the Story

6. Also, still no sign of Janet Van Dyne

We know Janet van Dyne, Hope’s mother and Hank Pym’s wife, will show up in “Ant-Man and the Wasp,” thanks to casting: The role is being played by Michelle Pfeiffer. As to what role she’ll play, how Pym might get her out of the Quantum Realm, or what she might be like when she returns, though, the trailer has given us no clues.

7. Bad guys are after Hank Pym’s building

In lieu of diving into the really big questions, this trailer presents a plot that seemingly revolves around a large building that Hank Pym is able to shrink. That building seems like the place where Hank stores all his important technology stuff, which is why bad guys including Walton Goggins have stolen it in the trailer.

The original “Ant-Man” was a heist movie, and it looks like “Ant-Man and the Wasp” probably is one too, with Hank hiring Luis (Michael Pena) and his crew to assist Ant-Man (Paul Rudd) and the Wasp (otherwise known as Hope van Dyne — played by Evangeline Lilly) in stealing it back. Which is a cool enough premise that we almost don’t even need to get into the “Infinity War”-related stuff. Almost.

We’ve also got all sorts of other content exploring the dire situation the Avengers find themselves in at the end of “Infinity War.” Click here for our look at what “Ant-Man and the Wasp” might have to do with all thisClick here for our deep dive into how “Captain Marvel” might impact this distressing plot twist. Click here for a closer examination of Doctor Strange’s actions in “Infinity War,” and how losing this fight might end up being the key to winning it later. Click here for our discussion of the whole Vision situation, which may not be exactly what it seems. And, finally, here’s our run-down on how the comic book version of these events played out.

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PSA: ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’ Takes Place Before ‘Avengers: Infinity War’

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

(Note: This post contains very mild spoilers for “Avengers: Infinity War.” No ending talk here. For our spoiler-filled discussion of the ways that “Ant-Man and the Wasp” could impact the story of “Infinity War” and next year’s “Avengers 4,” click here.)

“Avengers: Infinity War” has arrived, along with Thanos, a threat so big almost every hero in the Marvel Cinematic Universe had to band together to fight him. As Marvel Studios has promised, the Thanos conflict is having huge impacts on the MCU.

We won’t see exactly how those impacts will play out until “Avengers 4,” however, even though there are two more MCU movies being released before “Avengers 4” hits theaters in May 2019. One is “Captain Marvel,” which takes place in the 1990s and is releasing in March 2019. (For an in-depth look at how “Captain Marvel” might impact “Avengers 4,” click here.) The other is “Ant-Man and the Wasp,” the sequel to the 2015’s “Ant-Man.”

Also Read: How Will ‘Captain Marvel’ Play Into That Wild ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ Ending?

“Ant-Man and the Wasp” is coming out later this summer, in July, but don’t expect to see the aftermath of Thanos’ romp through the MCU explored in the movie. That’s because the second “Ant-Man” movie takes place before the events of “Infinity War”  — the official synopsis says that “Ant-Man and the Wasp” begins “in the aftermath of ‘Captain America: Civil War.’ “

That very much does not mean that “Ant-Man and the Wasp” will just be some kind of irrelevant side story, though. “Avengers: Infinity War” and next year’s “Avengers 4” are a huge event over a decade in the making, and the movies that Marvel is releasing in between them must be incredibly important to the greater story in some way. The fact that neither Ant-Man nor the Wasp appeared in “Infinity War” but both of them will be in “Avengers 4” just makes that all the more apparent — it’s likely that “Ant-Man and the Wasp” will run right up to “Infinity War” and maybe even interact directly with it in some way.

In fact, we have lots of thoughts about the pile of potential ways the events of “Ant-Man and the Wasp” could influence the story of Thanos and “Avengers 4.” You can read our deep dive into all “Ant-Man and the Wasp” possibilities right here. That post is full of spoilers about the ending of “Infinity War.”

Also Read: How Will ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’ Factor Into That Insane ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ Cliffhanger?

So here’s what the fact that it’s a prequel means for how the plot sets up: Ant-Man fought on the technically illegal side of Captain America (Chris Evans) in “Civil War.” Cap and his allies were operating without sanction under the Sokovia Accords, the legal document in that movie that dictated laws specifically about what the Avengers could do and who they answered to. Most of Cap’s allies were arrested in “Civil War,” including Scott.

In “Infinity War,” Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) explains the reason Ant-Man and Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner) aren’t there to fight Thanos: They’re both under house arrest, having taken plea deals to protect their families after “Civil War.” “Ant-Man and the Wasp” catches up with Scott while he’s dealing with those legal repercussions — in the trailer we see him getting fitted with an ankle monitoring bracelet. As set up in the first “Ant-Man” movie, though, “Ant-Man and the Wasp” will deal with venturing back to the Quantum Realm, the small universe made up of the space between molecules and atoms, to try to find and rescue the original Wasp, Janet van Dyne (Michelle Pfeiffer).

Marvel is playing this whole thing so close to the vest that it’s likely we won’t know how all that matters in the big picture until we actually sit down and watch “Ant-Man and the Wasp” in a couple months. So stay tuned!

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‘Maleficent 2′: Michelle Pfeiffer in Talks to Play the Queen

Read on: TheWrapTheWrap.

Michelle Pfeiffer is in talks to play the Queen in “Maleficent 2,” an individual with knowledge of the project tells The Wrap.

“Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales” director Joachim Ronning is set to direct. Production on the sequel is set to start in 2018.

Angelina Jolie will reprise the title role in the live-action fairy tale. She is noted for her reluctance to doing live-action sequels, instead preferring to focus on original movies as both an actress and a filmmaker. Sony and Universal once planned sequels to “Salt” and “Wanted,” respectively, but Jolie hasn’t expressed desire to return for either would-be franchise since the poor reception of her 2003 “Tomb Raider” sequel, “The Cradle of Life.”

Also Read: ‘Maleficent 2’ With Angelina Jolie: Joachim Rønning in Talks to Direct Sequel

Joe Roth is producing the film. Jez Butterworth and Linda Woolverton wrote the sequel script, with Micah Fitzerman-Blue and Noah Harpster writing its most recent revisions.

“Maleficent” grossed $760 million worldwide in 2014, making the sequel a high priority for Disney’s development team.

Pfeiffer was last seen in Kenneth Branagh’s “Murder on the Orient Express” and will be in Marvel Studios “Ant-Man and The Wasp,” which will be in theaters July 6.

Pfeiffer is repped by CAA and Management 360.

Variety first reported the news.

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After ‘Avengers: Infinity War,’ What in the Hell Happens Now?

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(MAJOR SPOILERS AHEAD for the ending of “Avengers: Infinity War.” So if you don’t know how it ends and don’t want to know, leave now.)

(SERIOUSLY. GET OUTTA HERE.)

(ONE LAST WARNING.)

“Avengers: Infinity War” leaves the situation in the Marvel Cinematic Universe in a precarious, and fairly horrifying, state. Despite an unprecedented uniting of heroes, Thanos manages to gather the all-powerful Infinity Stones and achieve his ultimate goal: Eliminating half of all life in the universe from existence.

With a snap of his fingers, Thanos causes a huge number of people to simply vanish into clouds of dust, including most of the MCU’s stable of superheroes. People like Falcon, Black Panther, Star-Lord, Scarlet Witch, Mantis, Doctor Strange and Spider-Man, they’re all dead now. Thanos won, and the Avengers and their allies lost.

But, clearly, the story of Thanos and the Infinity Stones is far from over. There are quite a few plot threads still up in the air, as well as major characters who didn’t make it into “Infinity War,” not to mention that we’re getting another “Avengers” movie just a year from now, with two other movies in between. So what in the hell happens next?

First up, there’s “Ant-Man and the Wasp,” out in July, which we know is set, or at least begins, before the events of “Infinity War.” We also know that that movie resolves a plotline from the first “Ant-Man,” about how Janet van Dyne, who suited up as the Wasp with original Ant-Man Hank Pym, was lost in the Quantum Realm. That’s the space between molecules and atoms, so small Pym thought Janet could never return from it, and presumed her dead. But Scott Lang, the current Ant-Man, managed to make it back from the Quantum Realm in “Ant-Man,” reigniting Pym’s hope in finding his wife Janet.

Also Read: How Will ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’ Factor Into That Insane ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ Cliffhanger?

Since we know Michelle Pfeiffer is playing a modern version of Janet van Dyne, it’s safe to say she’ll be rescued from the Quantum Realm. And we’re willing to bet that what Janet learned about the Realm, or what we learn about it in “Ant-Man and the Wasp,” will have a direct impact on “Avengers 4.” Ant-Man wasn’t a part of “Infinity War,” but placing a separate story in between the two halves of that tale implies that it will be a very important piece of this puzzle. Especially considering both Ant-Man and the Wasp are slated to pop up in “Avengers 4.”

For a much deeper dive into how “Ant-Man and the Wasp,” and travel into the Quantum Realm in particular, could play into that “Infinity War” cliffhanger, check out our closer look right here.

The same goes for “Captain Marvel,” the second of the two MCU movies between the two “Avengers” movies, and the one that was directly referenced in the post-credits scene in “Infinity War.” Nick Fury’s final act before he ceased to exist because of Thanos was to contact Captain Marvel, real name Carol Danvers.

Mar-Vell, art by Jim Starlin

That’s probably because Danvers has some serious connections to Thanos. Her story is set in the 1990s, and her origin concerns her meeting up with, and teaming up with, Mar-Vell, an alien of the Kree race. We first saw the Kree, who have an empire out beyond Earth, in “Guardians of the Galaxy.” Ronan the Accuser, the blue villain of that movie, was a Kree warrior. Mar-Vell is a minority white-skinned Kree, which allows him to blend in as human, and in the comics he visits Earth in order to spy and asses humanity’s space flight capabilities and potential to threaten the Kree empire — but he winds up becoming a superhero instead. Eventually, Danvers is subjected to a Kree weapon that merges her DNA with Kree DNA, giving her incredible powers on par with Mar-Vell.

Also Read: How Will ‘Captain Marvel’ Play Into That Wild ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ Ending?

In the comics, Mar-Vell has a long history with Thanos. He previously stopped his universe-controlling machinations and was even named a “Protector of the Universe” specifically to oppose the mad Titan. But Mar-Vell eventually died, and Danvers took up the mantle of Captain Marvel.

All that comics lore can easily be linked back to “Infinity War” as we know it: If Mar-Vell was fighting Thanos, he might have delayed the Mad Titan’s quest for the Infinity Stones. He could have also given his knowledge of how to deal with Thanos to Danvers before he died. That would explain why Nick Fury contacted Danvers in his final moment: She’s been waiting for Thanos’ arrival. The question then becomes, why hasn’t she been called to action before? That’s almost certainly a question we’ll have to wait until March, when the “Captain Marvel” movie hits theaters, to get an answer to.

We also delved much deeper into the many ways “Captain Marvel” will be important to what happened in “Infinity War” — we’re honestly expecting it to function as a direct prequel to the battle with Thanos — and you can read that right here.

Also Read: ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ Post-Credits Scene Explained: What Logo Was That on the Pager?

Then there’s the matter of Doctor Strange. During “Avengers: Infinity War,” Strange uses the Time Stone to delve into the future and try to find a scenario in which the heroes manage to beat Thanos. He reports back that of the more than 14 million timelines Strange visited, he found one in which they were victorious. So presumably, his actions in “Infinity War” are Strange working to make that one reality come true, even though Thanos’ victory in this movie seems at odds with that idea.

But that’s only the short view. Doctor Strange’s last words before he, too, turned to dust — “There was no other way” — indicate that the future he hoped to bring about is still very much in play, despite what feels like an extremely large setback.

For a deeper discussion of Doctor Strange’s apparent long game, click here.

Also Read: ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ — That Crazy Ending Was Part of Doctor Strange’s Plan

It also seems like Gamora and the Soul Stone have a much bigger role to play in “Avengers 4.” In the comics, the main deal with the Soul Stone is that it traps souls within itself in a dimension called the Soulworld, and it seems “Infinity War” is going the same way, with Thanos finding himself briefly inside the orange Soul Stone world to talk to young Gamora. If that’s the case, there’s definitely more to the emotional conflict between Thanos and his adopted daughter than we’ve seen, and just because so many characters have died doesn’t mean they don’t still have a part to play in the future, since they may very well be stuck in that Soulworld now too.

We also can’t forget the Time Stone’s ability to turn back the clock. Somehow, that seems like a very relevant power right now — though we don’t know if anyone is left who has the ability to use it.

Well, there might be one person, at least going off the 1991 event comic series on which “Infinity War” is very loosely based. That six-issue series, “Infinity Gauntlet,” has little in common with the movie beyond being about Thanos using the Gauntlet to wipe out half of all life in the universe and the surviving heroes having to deal with the fallout. Most of the major players are not part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, like Adam Warlock and the Silver Surfer, and while Doctor Strange has a major part to play after Thanos makes his big move in the book, he’s among the dead at the end of “Infinity War.”

Also Read: ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ — Here’s What Happened Next in the Comic Book Version of the Story

However, there is one big connection: Nebula. In the comics story she’s the one who eventually is able to rip the Infinity Gauntlet off Thanos’ hand — and she’s one of the few main characters who survived the purge in the movie version. Given Nebula’s relationship with Thanos in the MCU, it’s safe to say she’ll be pretty dang important in the next movie even without considering the “Infinity Gauntlet” comic. Anyway, it’s something to think about.

We have a much more detailed rundown of the “Infinity Gauntlet” story and how it lines up with “Infinity War” and the situation in the MCU in general, which you can read right here.

And then there’s Clint “Hawkeye” Barton, who sat out “Avengers: Infinity War.” What’s his deal? Is he hanging out with Scott Lang, doing tiny Ant-Man things? Is he going to come out of retirement after Thanos vanished half his family, angry to an extent we’ve never seen? Is he secretly a shapeshifting Skrull?

Who knows? Of course, this is all speculation based on the story evidence left behind in “Avengers: Infinity War” and educated guesses about what we know about the MCU and Marvel comics. It’s very possible any number of other things we haven’t anticipated could come up. But there are a lot of pieces that seem like they’re coming together in “Infinity War” and beyond that seem very likely to have a big impact on the MCU going forward.

Related stories from TheWrap:

‘Avengers: Infinity War’ — Here’s What Happened Next in the Comic Book Version of the Story

How Will ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp’ Factor Into That Insane ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ Cliffhanger?

‘Avengers: Infinity War’ — We Need to Talk About What Happened With Vision

‘Avengers: Infinity War’ — That Crazy Ending Was Part of Doctor Strange’s Plan

How Will ‘Captain Marvel’ Play Into That Wild ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ Ending?