The “Captain America: Civil War” trailer debuted last night on the Jimmy Kimmel show. Like all Marvel movies, there has been a lot of buzz over this film but more so than usual because of what is expected to be a huge cast full of appearances from other Marvel characters, the debut of one of the biggest characters in the MCU, and very likely the death of an Avenger.
Civil War is based on the 2006-2007 comic book story line in which Captain America and Iron Man divide the entire Marvel Universe over whether enhanced beings should have to register with the government. In a bit of role reversal, Tony Stark who normally is against any kind of government supervision has a change of heart and is in favor of the registration plan while Captain America, the good soldier who is used to following orders, instead takes a stand against the government. The argument of course isn’t solved with debate on Capitol Hill and instead turns violent pitting a multitude of heroes against each other.
In the film version, the government has decided after the destruction of Sokovia (Avengers: Age of Ultron) enhanced beings need to register. Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) the creator of Ultron feels responsible for the chaos and is in support of the plan. Captain America Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) is a bit less trustful of the government after seeing the corruption of S.H.I.E.L.D. (“Captain America: The Winter Soldier”) and the plan appears to put his old friend Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan)at risk. Barnes was the brainwashed villain the Winter Soldier who now might be remembering his old life and friend.
The trailer picks up right where Ant-Man, the last Marvel movie, left off with the Winter Soldier’s arm trapped in a machine while Captain America and Falcon (Anthony Mackie) attempt to break through the brainwashing and rescue him. Even though the trailer picks up right after the Ant-Man teaser scene, the character was not shown in the trailer but is expected to be in the film. The trailer did confirm the appearances of Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson), Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner), Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen), Agent 13 (Emily VanCamp), Thaddeus “Thunderbolt” Ross (William Hurt), and War Machine (Don Cheadle). Vision (Paul Bettany) is also expected to be in the film.
Civil War will feature at least two debuts of new heroes into the Marvel Universe. The trailer shows the first in costume appearance of Black Panther (Chadwick Boseman)whose alter ego T’Challa debuted in Age of Ultron. Not shown in the trailer is the character that Marvel has wanted to use in their movies for years, Spider-man who has been recast with Tom Holland. Sony has had the film rights to Spider-Man since the 90’s when bankrupt Marvel sold the film rights of Spider-man, X-Men, Fantastic Four, and many others to various studios. Marvel and Sony have now reached a deal in which Sony will continue to own the rights but Marvel will take over the writing of the franchise and be able to use the character in its own films. The first Marvel Spider-man movie is slated for July 28, 2017.
While the large cast and character debuts are sure to delight fans, theater goers may not leave Civil War happy. A major character may die in this film. In the comic book, Captain America is shot and killed by a sniper at the end of the story. Captain America’s old friend Bucky Barnes/Winter Soldier then assumes the Captain America mantle. This happens to be the final Captain America film in Chris Evans’ contract although it is rumored that he has signed on for the two part Avengers: Infinity War. Chris Evans from the start has been hesitant about keeping the role long term and originally turned down Marvel until the contract was brought down from 9 movies to 6. Sebastian Stan has a 9 picture deal with Marvel and has only finished 1 to 2 movies so far. There are rumors that his appearance in “Captain America: The First Avenger” might not count against the 9 pictures because the contract may have been signed after that movie was completed. It is looking very likely that Stan could replace Evans as Captain America. Chris Evans isn’t the only actor whose contract is up though. While the trailer shows Iron Man holding a beaten War Machine, it is actually Iron Man who may be at risk. Robert Downey Jr was the first Marvel star and has exhausted the contract he signed. Several times he has said he was done with the Marvel and appears to be working on a picture by picture deal now which gets more expensive with each new film.
“Captain America: Civil War” opens in theaters May 6, 2016.