Marvel Studios Chief Mulled Over 'Captain America 3' Title for Years, Director Says

Joe Russo says an element of the third movie "alters the universe as a whole in some way"
Zade Rosenthal/Marvel

Although the third Captain America movie is still more than a year away, director Joe Russo is promising that its full title will be revealed shortly — and that it’s something that’s been in the works for a long, long time.

“If you’ve been talking to [Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige], the title has been in place probably for 10 years in his brain,” Joe Russo told Crave Online about the title. “It’s all part of the road map that he’s laid out, and it’s all part of the bigger plan.”

Russo went on to tease that Cap 3 would feature a twist akin to the second movie’s dismantling of SHIELD. “The big thing we knew we had to deal with in Cap 2 was the fall of Hydra. Similarly there is a very, very big idea at the center of Cap 3,” he said. That big idea is one that “alters the universe as a whole in some way,” he clarified, but also one that doesn’t impact the choice of bad guy or even plot of the movie. “As far as villain and story arc and tone, all that stuff is left up to us,” Russo said.

Much has been made about Marvel’s long-term planning — Feige said earlier this year that the studio has plotted releases through 2028 — and certainly the current era of Marvel releases is in the middle of a long-term story arc centering around the villain Thanos, who has made appearances in Avengers and Guardians of the Galaxy.

What is perhaps surprising is how central the Captain America films have been to the larger Marvel Studios story so far. The first Cap introduced the Tessaract, the first of the Infinity Stones that Thanos is seeking, and also set the wheels in motion for the first Avengers movie. The second took SHIELD apart and, as a result, removed the Avengers’ backing before their second movie (Following this logic, expect whatever the big event in Cap 3 is to set up the third Avengers somehow).

Whether this is an attempt to make what could be a tough sell to international markets a little easier — foreign audiences might not be interested in a character dressed in the American flag per se — but a movie that is crucial to the Marvel Studios universe as a whole is a far more attractive proposition regardless of nationality.

Captain America 3 will be released in May 2016. Nothing may ever be the same again.