Evangeline Lilly: 'I Don't Always Know What's Going on Completely in the Marvel Universe'
Evangeline Lilly has been a member of the Marvel Cinematic Universe for over half a decade, but even she has trouble keeping up with the expansive superhero powerhouse.
Lilly, 42, plays Hope Van Dyne/The Wasp in the Ant-Man film franchise, a role she first took on in 2015's Ant-Man and played again in 2018's Ant-Man and the Wasp. While she is currently working on her third Ant-Man film, the actress tells PEOPLE she's no Marvel expert.
"I don't actually watch all the Marvel stuff and I don't always know what's going on completely in the Marvel universe," she says, before adding, "Maybe I shouldn't admit that, but I don't."
In her latest film role, Lilly stars alongside fellow Marvel actor, Mike Colter, who played superhero Luke Cage in his own TV series, plus Jessica Jones and The Defenders. Lilly and Colter worked together on South of Heaven, a new drama about a man (Jason Sudeikis) who is freed from prison early to spend a year with his terminally ill girlfriend (Lilly).
Lilly tells PEOPLE their work in the MCU "never came up" while she and Colter were making South of Heaven.
"You know, we didn't even talk about it. And I think we were much more interested in each other as human beings," she says of her conversations with Colter. "We talked about his family and where he lives and our taste in homes but we never talked about Marvel."
Lilly is returning to Marvel with her third Ant-Man film, Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania, in which she'll reprise her role from the previous two movies. While she can't spill too many details about the latest installment in the franchise, Lilly teased a bit of what fans can expect.
"I haven't seen much because all I see is what I see in playback on the monitors while I'm working, so that's a very limited amount of stuff, but what I have seen so far looks beautiful and incredible," she tells PEOPLE.
Lilly says that playing Annie in her latest film was a welcome departure from working on "big, tentpole projects" where she's previously portrayed "really formidable women."
Before her role in South of Heaven, Lilly says she often starred as "women who are really tough and severe and very strong and capable at all moments."
"Annie meant a lot because it meant I was going to be able to play … somebody a lot more light-hearted than a lot of the characters I play, a lot sillier."
She adds, "I felt like I got to just be free and in a way be myself, which is not something you often get to do when you're acting."
South of Heaven is now in theaters and on VOD.
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