Marvel has taken Hollywood by storm. The Avengers are now so popular that people who have not read the comics know who they are. The Guardians of the Galaxy is an even better example where characters that were obscure to even comic fans have become household names. Just a couple of months ago when you said “StarLord” people would go “Who?”.

And if Guardians of the Galaxy wasn’t a big enough risk, Marvel might just be taking it’s biggest gamble, on one of it’s its smallest heroes (literally speaking). Is it just me or am I the only one excited to see ANT-MAN in action? One of the most anticipated movies in comic-dom which promised to be (potentially) one of the best things ever to hit the screens – that’s of course until Edgar Wright decided to pull out due to creative differences.

But the show must go on and Marvel Studios have begun principal photography and it seems to be coming along. Set for release on 16 July, 2015, the film is now directed by Peyton Reed (Bring it On, The Break-Up) with Paul Rudd (I Love You Man, Role Models) as Scott Lang aka Ant-Man, Michael Douglas (Behind The Candelabra, Wall Street) as Dr. Hank Pym and Evangeline Lilly (The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, Lost) as Hope Van Dyne, Hank Pym’s daughter.

Based on the Marvel comic character first published in 1962, armed with the ability to shrink in scale but increase in strength, con-man Scott Lang must embrace his inner-hero and help his mentor, Dr. Hank Pym, protect the secret behind his spectacular Ant-Man suit from a new generation of towering threats. Against seemingly insurmountable obstacles, Pym and Lang must plan and pull off a heist that will save the world.

So before the movie hits, these are a few things you might need to know about the tiniest Avenger of them all. (Note: This information can be used to make you seem cool…. maybe)

1. How many have taken the mantle of Ant-Man?

3 Ant Man

Well first of, Henry Pym was the first ever Ant Man, the guy who was responsible for discovering a substance called the Pym Particles (obviously naming it after himself) that allows the user to alter his size.

Next, there was Scott Lang, a thief who stole Henry Pym’s suit to save his daughter from a heart condition. And finally there’s my personal favorite, Eric O’Grady who used his SUPERHERO status to seduce women and was willing to lie, cheat and steal when in the suit.

3 Ant-Men with 3 very different personalities.

2. Now…what are Pym Particles?

What Are Pym Particles

Pym Particles are an unusual set of Subatomic Particles that alter size and mass. Simply put, you could grow to HUMONGOUS proportions or shrink down to a very very tiny size. After constant experiments, Pym was eventually able to change his size at will and mentally generate Pym Particles to change the sizes of other beings or inanimate objects.

Review: What did we think of the Guardians of the Galaxy

3. Who used Pym Particles?

Who's Used Pym Particles

Uh practically everyone and their cousin twice removed has used them at one point or other another. They’ve become a mainstay in the Marvel Universe (think Adamantium).

However, here are a few that have used them for an extended period (and sometimes for personal gain) – I mean come on, to have something like that in your possession who wouldn’t? Janet Van Dyne (Pym’s wife) used it to alter her size and became the Wasp, Clint Barton aka Hawkeye used it for his quills (which we could hopefully see in Avengers 2), Bill Foster aka Goliath made himself bigger, Scott Lang, Erik Jonhston who did the same as Bill Foster, Rita DeMara, Cassandra Lang, Eric O Grady and Tim Foster. These names are bound to pop up somewhere in the movies.

4. One of the first Avengers

First Avengers

The way the movies have story-boarded it, many think that Captain America was one of the first few Avengers. Entirely wrong. In the comics, the first Avengers were in fact Hank Pym as Ant-man together with Iron Man, the Wasp, Hulk and Thor. However, as the character wasn’t as popular as his counterparts, Marvel Studios decided not to take the risk to include him.

Ant-Man’s omission from the Avengers roster in the Marvel Cinematic Universe might actually be the biggest deviation the movies have taken from the comics. In the upcoming Avengers 2: Age of Ultron, Earth’s Mightiest Heroes assemble once again to battle Ultron, a sentient robot who decides to take the world’s matters into his own hands through the attempted subjugation of said world. In the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Ultron is created by Tony Stark. In the comics, he was actually created by Hank Pym – the other genius on the roster.

It was only until recently that Marvel saw the actual progress of their movies that they decided Ant-Man SHOULD have his own movie.

5. Where are they now in the comics?

ant-man

Well, after the devastation of the Age of Ultron (in the comics), Pym and SHIELD decided to create Avenger’s AI – a team to combat threats of the AI DIMITROS which was spawned by the Virus to defeat Ultron (guys, read AGE OF ULTRON!).

Scott Lang on the other hand joins the New Defenders which consists of Doctor Strange, Namor, Red-She hulk, Iron Fist and Black Cat. Hmm… do we see another movie spin Off right here? We’ll see.

If the show does live up to it’s true potential it could really be something special.