Ant Man was introduced in the Marvel Universe in 2015 when protagonist Scott Lang was hired to steal the suit back from for creator Hank Pym. 3 movies later and we have a variations of the iconic Ant Man suit that aids Scott (and others) in their missions. Let’s take a look. DISCLAIMER: we will only be looking at Ant Man in the solo films and will not diverge to include the suits worn in other MCU movies.
The suit was originally created in the 80s when Hank Pym found the Pym particle which “shortened the distance between an object’s molecules… while maintaining its mass.” He worked for S.H.I.E.L.D until he had a falling out and that is where, years later the Scott Lang suit is introduced. The first iteration of the suit was much bulkier than its later iterations and it had a motorcycle suit build. It was definitely vintage inspired. Let’s take a look at the key points of the suit and what they do for Ant man.
Original Ant-Man Suit: The first iteration of the suit, introduced in the 2015 film, had a bulkier, vintage-inspired design. It featured a retractable helmet to protect the wearer's brain while shrinking, and it included an EMP comms device for communication with ants. The gloves had buttons that activated shrinking and regrowth, while the belt regulated subatomic activities.
The designs of Sammy Sheldon and props maker Ivo Coveney spearheaded the evolution of Ant Man in the first film. They had been working on the film through various director changes and plot changes. Multiple Replicas: The team behind the first Ant-Man film created numerous replicas of the suit using different materials to ensure the actors' comfort in various scenes. Although the replicas looked the same, they were made with different materials to accommodate different needs. Ivo told blogger Brite and Bubbly during a press junket there were ultimately 13 suits and about 17 different helmets. Thats impressive
Ant-Man and The Wasp Suit: In the second installment, Ant-Man and The Wasp (2018), Louise Frogley led the costume design. She aimed for a suit that emphasized muscles, sleekness, and a modern approach. Rubber tubing and laser-cut stretch fabric, imported from France, were used to create the updated suit. Frogley drew inspiration from the work of Steve Ditko, a comic book artist, for her designs.
The Wasp's Costume: The Wasp, played by Evangeline Lilly, received special attention in terms of costume planning. Around 30 different shapes were created based on drawings and concepts by Andy Park. The Wasp's suit featured 90 gold-tinted leather pieces arranged in a honeycomb pattern over a silver-toned background, giving it a medieval armor-inspired look. Designing the mask proved challenging due to issues with fogging up during filming.
The dedication and creativity of the costume designers for all films brought the Ant-Man and The Wasp suits to life on the big screen. Each iteration of the suit was tailored to suit the characters and their specific needs while incorporating elements from the comic book source material.