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Everything We Know About Captain America 3

Posted on the 17 April 2014 by Weminoredinfilm.com @WeMinoredInFilm

Captain America: Winter Soldier has only been out for around two weeks domestically, nearly a month internationally.  However, The Amazing Spider-Man 2 is already opening overseas this week, and X-Men: Days of Future Past arrives in around a month.  So, we’ll have moved on before too long, but it’s not like we have to wait forever to see Cap again.  After all, Winter Soldier pulls a James Bond on us and uses the last line of its closings credits to promise us “Captain America will return in Avengers: Age of Ultron,” due out next summer.  However, Winter Soldier has been a bit enough hit that Marvel has officially confirmed a Captain America 3 for 2016.  So, here’s everything we know about Cap’s next (and likely last) non-Avengers adventure:

The Title

Captain America 3 is obviously a working title.  It’ll most likely get a sub-title at some point, ala Captain America: Winter Soldier, Thor: The Dark World, and Avengers: Age of Ultron.

The Release Date

May 6, 2016 in North America.  Marvel staked a claim to this release date last year, but only recently confirmed the date was being held for Captain America 3.  Batman Vs. Superman currently occupies that release date as well, having moved to it knowing full well that Marvel already had an untitled film scheduled there.  Now that Marvel has revealed the film will be Captain America 3 Warner Bros. is not backing down, at least not yet.  No one seriously believes we’ll get to May 6, 2016 and have both Cap 3 and Batman Vs. Superman opening, though.  The problem is the summer of 2016 is filling up so fast the only real move either film could make would be to follow Winter Soldier‘s lead and simply open in early April, or move to somewhere else in May-July, hoping they’ll force someone else to re-schedule out of whichever weekend they pick.

The Directors

The same guys who did this on Community are now in charge of Captain America

The same guys who did this on Community are now in charge of Captain America

Winter Soldier‘s directors Joe and Anthony Russo are returning, invited back by Marvel months before Winter Soldier even came out.  They join Joss Whedon (Avengers/Avengers: Age of Ultron) and Jon Favreau (Iron Man/Iron Man 2) as the only directors to be asked back for a Marvel Studios sequel.

The Writers

Winter Soldier‘s writers Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely are also returning, making Captain America Marvel Studios’ most stable franchise as far as writing is concerned since Markus and McFeely also wrote First Avenger.  The only other person who has written for Captain America in the Marvel Cinematic Universe is Joss Whedon with Avengers/Avengers: Age of Ultron.  Marvel was so high on Winter Soldier they actually hired Markus and McFeely to begin work on Cap 3 late last year.

The Stars/Characters

Chris Evans, Anthony Mackie, Sebastian Stan, and Emily Vancamp are all under contract to return as Cap, Falcon, Winter Soldier, and Agent 13 respectively.  Evans’ Marvel Studios contract # is 6: 3 Captain America films, 3 Avengers films (his Thor: The Dark World cameo doesn’t count, I guess).  He is not long for this super hero world, pledging to retire from acting and pursue directing (or only acting in films he directs) as soon as his Marvel contract expires.  As such, it’s highly likely that Cap 3 will be the final solo outing for Steve Rogers, and that he’ll be killed off (or somehow written out) in Avengers 3.  Sebastian Stan’s contract, on the other hand, is for 9 films, seemingly significant since in the comics when Steve Rogers dies Bucky Barnes picks up his mantle as Captain America.


Winter Soldier co-stars like Samuel L. Jackson and Scarlett Johansson do not currently appear to be in the mix for Cap 3,  which is not to say they won’t be, just that no one’s really talking about it as if they will be.

The Plot

Winter Soldier ends with a call to action as Captain America and Falcon pledge to go after the Winter Soldier, whatever that means.  However, it also dangles several threads begging to be picked up in Cap 3, such as a potential romance with Sharon, return appearance from Frank Grillo’s Brock Rumlow in full-on Crossbones mode, and what to do about Hydra, although if given a second season that will clearly by Agents of SHIELD‘s new driving force.  At this point, though, there doesn’t even appear to be a script, but instead continued story meetings between Markus and McFeely and the Russo brothers to throw ideas out to see what works and what doesn’t.  Markus and McFeely told Collider they have yet to decide how big of a role to give the Winter Soldier in the story, and that their biggest challenge might be fighting the impulse to turn Cap’s ever-expanding team of supporting players into a mini-Avengers thus distracting from the fact that Captain America is supposed to be the main star.

The only concrete hint of where they might be going with things comes from one sentence from Markus in an interview with DenOfGeek:

Markus: All I’m saying is psychotic 1950s Cap.

Now, Markus could have merely been joking, but just in case he wasn’t here’s the tall glass of crazy to which he’s referring: after World War II, Captain America’s popularity waned and the sales of his comics plummeted.  So, Stan Lee did Senator McCarthy proud, reviving Captain America in 1953 as “Captain America…Commie Smasher!”


Though this new run barely lasted a full year, it read like a McCarthian wet dream: “Communists were everywhere. They were in the press, in the government, and in the army. Random passersby would reveal themselves as Communist spies and throw themselves at Cap. And he performed his Caply duties with vigor, beating every Communist he could into a wet mess.”

All involved parties came to deeply regret this period of the character’s history.  Cap was revived in 1964 with his now well-known back story of WWII super soldier frozen on ice suddenly revived several decades later.  In 1972, they explained the 1950s cap as being a pretender who had gone through plastic surgery, made his own super soldier serum, recruited a Bucky look-alike, and then subsequently went bat-shit crazy due to the hallucinogenic effects of the serum.  Oddly enough, this character and his fake version of Bucky are both referenced (though only the latter is actually featured) in the Winter Soldier graphic novel upon which the Winter Soldier film is rather loosely based.  In fact, “psychotic 1950s cap” became something of a villain to the real Cap.

That doesn’t mean they’re definitely running with this for Cap 3.  It just means that at this early stage “psychotic 1950s cap” is one idea they’ve thrown out there.  

As for romance, Markus told THR, “There are things we talked about writing [for Winter Soldier] that I don’t think we got around to writing. Like, are we going to examine who Sharon Carter (Emily VanCamp) really is? Which we’ve left for the future. There’s no room in the movie for Steve to stop and go “Wait. You’re the great-grandniece of the woman I love? And is it weird that I’m attracted to you?” 

At this point, that’s pretty much it.  A common refrain from the writers during their brief video interview with Collider is that these are very early days.  So, really, I suggest you go and read FilmSchoolRejects’ suggestions for what to do next in Cap 3 (although, I’m sorry, I just don’t see them doing the Civil War story – it’s way too big) because for all we know some of their ideas might end up being used by Markus and McFeely in Cap 3.

How Captain America: The First Avenger Should Have Ended: 

Sources: THR, Vulture, Collider, DenOfGeek

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