It's been a sad, traumatic weekend for Marvel fans.
Quirky British director Edgar Wright's eight-year quest to bring Ant-Man to the screen has ended after he walked away over creative differences with Marvel Studios.
The hotly-anticipated new superhero franchise had Paul Rudd pencilled in as a scientist who had the power to control ants and was scheduled to open July 2015.
Wright, who was behind the British offbeat comedies Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz and The World's End - known collectively as the Cornetto Trilogy, had been developing Ant-Man for some time as a passion project.
Social media erupted in shock, bemusement and widespread speculation over the split, with the studio citing the cause as being "due to differences in their version of the film".
As a note of solidarity, Avengers director Joss Whedon tweeted a photo of him solemnly holding aloft a Cornetto.
— Joss Whedon (@josswhedon) May 24, 2014
Wright responded this morning with a photo of a gloomy Buster Keaton holding a photoshopped Cornetto.
— edgarwright (@edgarwright) May 25, 2014
The studio said a new director would be announced shortly and it did not expect any change to the release date.
- FFX Aus