Chris Evans and Anthony Mackie: CAPTAIN AMERICA: CIVIL WAR is a "family dispute"; plus D23 footage description

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“Civil War” –  the comic book that is – was a knock-down drag-out running battle across the breadth of the Marvel Comics Universe as essentially small armies of heroes went to complete and utter war with each other over the Superhero Registration Act. By necessity, Captain America: Civil War can’t be the same thing, despite borrowing the title and general idea from the comic. The Marvel Cinematic Universe is just a vastly different place to the comic book world: there are no hundreds of masked heroes running around, no untrained vigilantes irresponsibly causing mass tragedies, no restrictive laws encroaching on their civil rights. In other words, while the movie will still see a conflict headed up by Steve Rogers aka Captain America (Chris Evans) and Tony Stark aka Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.) on opposing factions, you can probably expect the scope to be a bit different.

According to Anthony Mackie, who will be reprising his role as Sam Wilson aka Falcon, that scope – and level of violence – will be brought down to family level, as the actor explained to IGN after the Marvel segment of Disney’s D23 Expo this weekend past:

“Nah, it’s not MMA. We definitely have gloves on. It’s more a family dispute, and that’s what so great about this movie and the characters and how they work together. It’s more so when you have a sibling rivalry. The reason why people can relate to these characters so much, is because they can relate to what they’re going through. Everybody’s fought with one of their siblings or one of their friends and wanted to make up with them but couldn’t figure out how to do it.”

Evans echoed this, explaining that what makes this conflict so unique is that while Cap and Iron Man fundamentally don’t agree on this, they also can’t just avoid each other.

“Well said. I feel like families – you have more struggles with the people you love [because] you care about them. You can’t leave them, you have to make this work. If it’s someone you can cut out of your life, no problem.  You may not get along, but you can’t just cut them out of your life.”

This sentiment was best displayed when the D23 audience was treated to the first footage from the film, and along with some great story beats – including a geeking out Ant-Man – also got to see superspy best pals Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) and Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner) engaged in a fight while still keeping the banter up. Unfortunately Marvel hasn’t made the footage available online yet, but i09 has a fantastic beat-by-beat writeup of it:

It starts with Captain America in a bedroom. “Eyes on target,” he says. Falcon is on the roof and launches a “red wing.” This is a small drone that shoots out of his pack, flies down to the street and under a car. It begins sending Falcon X-rays of the car, and they realize it’s a battering ram. Crossones jumps out of the back, Captain America jumps down to fight him, and he shoots a bomb onto Cap’s shield. Cap is forced to throw his shield into the air, so the explosion doesn’t hurt anyone. The two fight, Falcon flies in and Black Widow runs toward the action—this all takes place in a crowded foreign market place. Crossbones lands some huge punches on Cap with his mechanical arms, and there are knives embedded in them. Widow takes out four men. And just as Cap is about to beat Crossbones, he mentions Bucky. “What did you say?” Cap asks. Then the Marvel logo. We’re just getting started.

William Hurt’s character from The Incredible Hulk is talking in voiceover as we see Cap and the team walking through the Avengers headquarters. “The world owed you an unplayable debt. People see you as a hero. There are some who prefer the word vigilante—people are afraid.” Cap responds, “This job, you try to save as many as we can. Sometimes that doesn’t mean everyone.” Those last lines are over the ending shots of The Winter Soldier. Then we cut to the Ant-Man end credits scene. Bucky, aka The Winter Soldier, has been captured.

“Bucky, do you know me?” Captain America asks the captured Winter Soldier. “Your mother’s name was Sara,” he says.

And then we saw a montage of shots with some more voice over. We see Cap and Bucky walking to a bunker in the snow. “What would you call a group of enhanced individuals who inflict their will anywhere their choose?” someone asks. They show Vision, Scarlet Witch, Falcon, and other Avengers. Cap says, “Sometimes the safest hands are still our own.”

Then, finally, we see Tony Stark. “Sometimes I want to punch you in your perfect teeth.”

“We have no boundaries,” Stark says. “We’re no better than the bad guys.” “Is that how you see protection?” Cap retorts. A bunch of quick cuts, including Black Panther quickly, Martin Freeman in a room filled with monitors and more. No Spider-Man. Finally someone asks Cap “What do we do?” “We fight,” he says. We then see Cap, Bucky, Falcon, Widow and a few others running across an airport tarmac. That’s followed by a few quick, close cuts of fighting and then we see Hawkeye on top of Widow, trying to choke her. “We’re still friends, right?” she asks. “Depends on how hard you hit me,” he replies.

Then, after the title, one more scene. Hawkeye pulls up in a van and in the back of it, sleeping, is Scott Lang, played by Paul Rudd. “Oh my god, Captain America, it’s an honor” he says. He starts shaking his hand and staring at him. “I’m shaking your hand too long, right?” He turns around, sees Scarlet Witch and says, “I know you too, you’re great.” And then he just keeps touching Cap’s shoulders. “I know you know a lot of super people, so thanks for thinking of me,” Lang says. And that’s it.

That all sounds fantastic! I can’t wait so both “Redwing” and Frank Grillo’s Crossbones in action, and I love that Ant-Man is keeping up his Paul Rudd-ness, if that makes any sense. It sounds like he’s going to be a great addition to the already fan-favourite bromances playing out in the Captain America movies. Bromances that will definitely be explored properly, despite the huge cast for Civil War, as Evans explained.

“Marvel has a lot of balls in the air, you have a lot of movies that they’re trying to bring together. There’s a lot of things that they’re trying to marry and when you have characters like Falcon and Winter Soldier, these movies are really compressing these storylines. In this movie alone, there’s the relationship between Cap and Falcon, the relationship between Cap and Winter Soldier.”

Here’s a clip of Evans and Mackie on stage (sans Civil War footage), along with Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige, as they introduced the footage and also spoke about their love of Disney.

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Captain America: Civil War is scheduled to debut on May 6, 2016.

Last Updated: August 18, 2015

Kervyn Cloete

A man of many passions - but very little sleep - I've been geeking out over movies, video games, comics, books, anime, TV series and lemon meringues as far back as I can remember. So show up for the geeky insight, stay for the delicious pastries.

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