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Captain America: Civil War — the latest edition to Marvel’s cinematic universe — pits Robert Downey Jr.’s Iron Man against Chris Evan’s Captain America. The world premiere for the film really ran with the whole house divided motif.
Long-time fight announcer Michael Buffer took the stage at the Dolby Theater in Hollywood to bring out the A-list cast in attendance, which included Anthony Mackie, Don Cheadle, Paul Rudd and Paul Bettany, who were then brought out on stage one by one, Evans and Downey emerging last.
Buffer then asked the audience, many of whom were wearing either red or blue depending on their superhero partiality, to cheer for the side that they would be taking in the Civil War, either Iron Man’s or Captain America’s. (By this reporter’s estimate, The Cap got the majority of the applause.)
Before starting the nearly two-and-a-half hours of epic battle sequences, Buffer shouted over the thousands in attendance: “Let’s get ready to rumble!”
Outside the theaters, Marvel fans lined the red and blue carpet, either holding Cap’s shield or Iron Man’s mask.
Even though a lot of attention was being paid to Tony Stark and Steve Rogers, Civil War features a small armada of Avengers talent, including Ant-Man, Scarlet Witch, Black Widow, Vision, as well as newcomers Spider-Man and Black Panther, played by Tom Holland and Chadwick Boseman, respectively.
The Civil War writers, Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely, talked to THR about balancing plot, character and so many different actors.
“We line up what they get paid and proportioned their lines accordingly,” joked Markus. McFeely added: “It’s tough because you look at the ninth person on the call sheet and they have two Oscars.”
“You just have to be true to the characters,” said McFeely, who described Robert Downey Jr. as very “hands on” in the writing for Iron Man. “There is no better expert on Tony Stark.”
As more superheroes continue to join the Marvel party and as more movies move into production, the narrative that supports the universe becomes more complex. Meaning that the barrier to entry for Marvel newcomers becomes more of an issue.
THR asked directors Anthony and Joe Russo how they navigate this added pressure.
Joe added that “with all of the characters — Black Panther is new and Dr. Strange is coming up — there are so many different entry points that people can come into the universe.”
The Russo brothers will also be at the helm of the next two Avenger‘s movies — Infinity War 1 and 2, which are slated to come out in 2018 and 2019. The next few years, the duo will be knee-deep in all things Avengers.
“We are diehard fans and we are the happiest we have ever been in our careers,” said Anthony.
Joe added: “We think there is still new ground to be tread.”
Captain America: Civil War hits theaters on May 6.
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