Disclosure: This event and trip to LA was an all expense paid journey sponsored by Disney. All thoughts, experiences, opinions and character crushes are 100% my own!
Talking about ANT-MAN with Paul Rudd & Evangeline Lilly
Last month, I travelled to LA to attend a press junket with 24 other bloggers for the film ANT-MAN. This included a press screening of the film, and a sit down interview with cast members. The first interview that I will be sharing is my interview with ANT-MAN stars Paul Rudd & Evangeline Lilly.
From the moment that they walked into the room, Paul and Evangeline were both so full of energy and excitement about this film. I love the connection that their characters have in the film. It was neat to see them interact in person and you could tell that they truly like each other and enjoyed working together. I also have to mention that Evangeline is absolutely stunning in person, very natural and warm. Paul wasn’t looking too bad either. Just sayin’.
Paul Rudd plays Scott Lang, who also happens to be ANT-MAN. Scott Lang is a very like-able character and Paul Rudd was perfectly cast for this part, in my opinion. He brings such a wonderful dimension of both humor and genuine “good guy” to this character–which is ironic considering his original occupation (or lack of!) in the movie. But trust me, you will love him in this role. Evangeline Lilly plays Hope Van Dyne. Hope is a very strong, beautiful woman who has a spicy edge to her. I loved the direction that her character takes certain relationships in the film. Hope adds so much to this film due to her constant attempts to find answers in her own life.
As you will see from the interview, they shared some great insights into both the making of this film and their thoughts on the messages that this film sends to it’s audience:
Paul, you are very well known for your comedy. What was it like doing an action movie?
Paul: I always felt like, especially with Marvel movies, but that this was going to be a funny movie. They are good with levity. I mean, all their films have funny moments but they’re not necessarily straight up comedies. And, with this one I knew that the action was going to be really good. I knew the visuals were going to be crazy good.
“…this whole thing with parents and children, that that was going to be really the thrust of the film. And that’s relatable and empathetic and something that you can hang the whole thing on. And that’s pretty dramatic. ” ~Paul Rudd
I also knew that there was this relationship that Scott Lang had with his daughter and that there was the relationship that Michael Douglas has with his daughter and that this whole thing with parents and children, that that was going to be really the thrust of the film. And that’s relatable and empathetic and something that you can hang the whole thing on. And that’s pretty dramatic.
So, that’s really what I kind of focused on, figuring you know, humor would be there in the end.
Evangeline: And that said, Paul did not stop improving and cracking jokes through the entire process — there wasn’t one scene no matter how serious where he didn’t make me break character. I kept asking him what am I supposed to do when you do that? Do I riff with you? Do I shut up and let you do your thing? Like, I am so out of my element because you are so comfortable in that comedic space and he being the sweetest man alive as we all know.
How fun was it to punch him in all the action scenes?
Evangeline: Everyone asks me that. You know I didn’t really punch him, right? I didn’t actually punch him.
Paul: Movie Magic.
Evangeline: I loved the take that they kept in the film because of course you never know what they’re going to use and what’s going to end up on the cutting room floor and one of his improvs was when he said “were you aiming for the face? For the head?” I was so glad that it ended up in there ’cause I love that line.
Evangeline, you worked with Paul and Adam with writing, in order to develop your character, do you feel like that it came out what you wanted as far as the girl power part of it?
Evangeline: You know, it’s funny because actually the girl power part was not really my contribution. That was Marvel. I mean what guy doesn’t like a girl who can kick ass? They like to see that on screen, right? What I think is important is that a woman, first of all be a woman and not a girl, and that she also have all the dimensions that a male character who can kick ass would also have. And I think a lot of the times what happens mistakenly in men’s very, very meaningful attempts to make strong women is they make them strong in the way that they relate to, which is wrong.
“…female strength has many more dimensions than that and I think that a lot of our strength comes from our women’s vulnerability, our compassion, our maternal instincts. I don’t think that those things should ever be labeled as weaknesses. ” ~Evangeline Lilly
And I think that female strength has many more dimensions than that and I think that a lot of our strength comes from our women’s vulnerability, our compassion, our maternal instincts. I don’t think that those things should ever be labeled as weaknesses. And I think that’s one of the things that I always look to put in and infuse these characters with is the sort of moments where you suddenly realize underneath that very hard facade, underneath what she’s trying to project to the world because she feels she has to survive or she has to do what she needs to do is you know, a little girl within all of us and even within Paul, there’s just a little girl…
Paul: It’s true, very true.
Evangeline: …that needs love and wants to give love in order to receive love and I think that’s what we’re all doing. That’s the human predicament, how do we give unconditional love and just not losing sight of that.
What’s your most memorable moment?
Evangeline: That’s the hardest question. I had a moment when I was doing a very intense emotional scene with Michael Douglas where, for the first time since I had attached myself to the project, the penny dropped and I was like great, good cast, everything’s good, things are coming together.
But I was thinking with an analytical mind of do I want to do this project or don’t I? And it wasn’t until I was working with him and witnessing the sort of magic that is the legend of Michael Douglas and what he brings to a film set and how he performs and what he does to the energy in the room when he performs that made me suddenly sit up and take notice and go, oh my God. I’d better bring it. I’m working with Michael Douglas and he’s a living legend and, and that was an honor.
Paul: Yeah I never shook that feeling. Every single scene working with him was like: wow, this is acting royalty.
What do you think the main theme of the movie as far as the parent/child relationship?
Evangeline: I think redemption is a big theme in the film and I think redemption between father and daughter and the father/daughter relationship is the powerful theme that really anchors the film emotionally.
Paul: I like this idea that you know, that we’re dealing with all of this craziness with a suit that shrinks you down and controlling ants and all this kind of stuff, and yet this constant thing with parents and children, whether it’s you know, with Michael or my daughter and me and Corey and Michael. This is the stuff, this is what makes the movie more than just a visual spectacle.
“I think redemption is a big theme in the film and I think redemption between father and daughter and the father/daughter relationship is the powerful theme that really anchors the film emotionally.” ~Evangeline Lilly
It’s the thing that I think everyone will relate to. We’ve all had bumpy times or whatever with our parent or our child and that’s the stuff that I think people will relate to.
About the ANT-MAN suit
“I remember the first time walking onto the set in the suit. The first time I ever put it on at a fitting was thrilling. And I felt like I was 10 years old. ~Paul Rudd
Paul: I remember the first time walking onto the set in the suit. The first time I ever put it on at a fitting was thrilling. And I felt like I was 10 years old. Every single time after that, it was whoa, I can’t believe this is so cool. And then we shot the scene where I discovered the suit for the first time, I’d stand in the bathtub. That was the first time putting it on when we were shooting it as well. And to go from the tent, because there was a tent that I went into and had a small pit crew helping me get into it, walk on set and the camera department and everyone stopped and saw Ant Man for the first time was totally exciting. And I’ll always remember that.
ANT-MAN and hits theaters July 17th, 2015!!
Check out this exclusive ANT-MAN sneak peek:
Make sure to follow all of the ANT-MAN excitement in social media:
ANT-MAN Website and Mobile site
Like ANT-MAN on Facebook
Follow ANT-MAN on Twitter
AND … a very, very special thank you to the folks at Disney for this wonderful and once in a life time opportunity that I will NEVER forget!