Michael Peña’s appearance in Ant-Man 3 is a distant dream since the actor was nowhere to be seen in the cast roster or has been spoken of in recent interviews. The trailer seems to be the final nail in the coffin as far as his MCU career is concerned. Despite being a fan favorite who also served to be Ant-Man’s loyal sidekick and an excellent recap narrator, it seems like the recent controversies surrounding the actor have overridden his Marvel all-access pass to the Ant-Man 3 sets.
Michael Peña’s Association with the Church of Scientology
Michael Peña‘s reputation in the public eye is marred by one huge aspect of his belief system. The actor has been involved with the Church of Scientology for a long time now and currently stands as one of its proud and outspoken members. In an interview with The Guardian in 2016, Peña opened up about his association with the institution and revealed that he began practicing Scientology in 2000 as a way of coping with his heavy drinking.
“I wasn’t an alcoholic, but I was doing it too much. And then there was the next thing, and the next thing. For me, it isn’t religion like a belief, it’s practical things you do.”
Michael Peña revealed that the Church’s Purification Rundown detox program not only helped him cope with his drinking but opened up an array of opportunities for him to explore one of which also included the Study Tech program which later helped him become a “better actor”. Later, he went on to bash the online research and documentaries published and released against the institution and compared them to tabloid articles saying — There’s no way I’m going to read some f*cking tabloid story… especially when I know it’s misinformed.”
These stories were in-depth exposes published by former members of the Church of Scientology who had gone on to tell their harrowing experiences in detail after years of being a part of the Church.
Michael Peña’s Luis is Seemingly Out of the Ant-Man 3 Story
When the 2016 article came out, Ant-Man was already soaring high on its debut box-office success and Michael Peña had become an overnight fan favorite. His character, Luis, the speed-talking and comedic mastermind who stands beside Scott Lang throughout his adventures had garnered a fanbase in the Marvel subgenre that was entirely devoted to him.
His return in Ant-Man and the Wasp was presented in a much lesser capacity although the signature humor won the fans’ hearts within the first few minutes of his appearance. But as the controversies surrounding Michael Peña start raging, it seems like the studio is looking to steer clear of the actor. This comes at a time when the MCU is taking drastic steps forward and introducing big names like Bill Murray and Michelle Pfeiffer in its Ant-Man 3 slot.
This homie wasn’t in the trailer and hasn’t been confirmed for the movie yet which is a terrible sign. pic.twitter.com/J1y73v0rrR
— Keyan Carlile (@KeyanCarlile) October 24, 2022
This homie is a scientologist.
— TemperatureBoy (@boy_temperature) October 24, 2022
Id rather they keep cult members out of the mcu.
— Juice (@bochts) October 24, 2022
Only Any Man and his family got teleported to the Quantum realm. Lol. Shoehorning him in would be a bad sign
— Shawn Hoelscher (@bloggershawn) October 24, 2022
The official Ant-Man 3 trailer promises a film of quantum realm intrigue filled with alien beings, new threats, Cassie Lang’s rise as a superhero, and most importantly, the introduction of Jonathan Majors’ Kang the Conqueror. Even though the trailer only assures the audience of yet another generic Marvel superhero movie, the impetus of Kang and his escape from the quantum realm that throws him directly in the crosshairs of the Avengers will be an interesting story to unravel.
Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania premieres on 17 February 2023.