Paul Rudd Explains How That Ant-Man 3 Scene With Thousands Of Scott Langs Was Filmed

This post contains spoilers for "Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania."

We can argue all day long about whether "Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania" is a barrel of fun or a barrel of hot crap, but it's undeniable that it rolls out a barrel of Scott Langs. In the Quantum Realm, Paul Rudd's incredible shrinking protagonist dives inside a volatile thing called the Multiversal Power Core in order to retrieve it for Kang (Jonathan Majors). There, Scott meets a variant of himself before swiftly multiplying in the style of fellow Marvel Comics character Jamie Madrox, a.k.a. the Multiple Man. Soon, Scott is surrounded by Ant-Man variants: every possible iteration of himself across the multiverse.

When the final trailer for "Quantumania" hit in January, we dissected it like an insect, of course, and in doing so, turned up a glimpse of the same "writhing mass of alternate Ant-Men." Scott is almost buried under them, like a viewer sifting through Marvel movies on Disney+, but he manages to climb to freedom with a little help.

Despite the CGI mass, it seems Rudd was doing some practical climbing on the "Quantumania" set, too. In an interview with The Wrap, the eternally youthful actor described the challenge of shooting the variant Ant-Men scene, saying:

"That was the most complex thing I've ever had to do ever in my life, in anything I've ever filmed. It took so many weeks to shoot that sequence. And it's fascinating, honestly, to talk to the special effects people, and the things that they have to kind of take into account and the things that I learned."

'There were a lot of moving parts, literally'

It wasn't just special effects people who helped bring the variant Ant-Men scene to life in "Quantumania." If you look closely, you can see that some of the other Ant-Men around Scott Lang have less convincing Paul Rudd faces. The scene is reminiscent of the Burly Brawl in "The Matrix Reloaded," whereupon a video-game army of Agent Smith (Hugo Weaving) clones dog-piles Neo (Keanu Reeves) on a playground. Rudd wasn't just acting opposite himself; he was climbing all over a team of dedicated stuntmen made to look like him. And from what he says, it sounds like there was playground equipment involved:

"I was climbing this kind of, it was almost like a three-story jungle gym. And there were people in all blue suits — like, a blue screen around us and they were in blue suits — and the stunt guys, they're lifting me up, and I'm having to climb around them. And so I was working with a lot of people in that, and you kind of can't fake it. You really do need other people to do it. And then there was another stunt guy who had an Ant-Man suit that, if I needed to grab a hand, you'd see the glove and so yeah, there were a lot of moving parts, literally."

As Scott Lang climbs toward the light in "Quantumania," you almost wish he would keep climbing right on out of the movie to confront K.E.V.I.N. like She-Hulk. Maybe then he could convince producer Kevin Feige to bring the Ant-Man film series back down to earth with a character-based four-quel set entirely within the Baskin Robbins where that one random Scott variant still works. Call it "Ant-Man and the Wasp: 31 Flavors."

"Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania" is in theaters now.