5 Things We Just Learned About Captain America: Civil War

By  · Published on May 7th, 2015

Disney and Marvel sent out a press release this morning confirming a number of things about Captain America: Civil War, including some of the faces – old and new – that will be seen in the film as well as the film’s plot. On the heels of Avengers: Age of Ultron, undoubtedly the biggest and most crowded Marvel Studios film to-date, Civil War does not appear as if it will slow things down at all.

Here are five things we learned from today’s announcement. Also, it’s worth noting that there are spoilers for Age of Ultron in our analysis:

1. This is Avengers 2.5.

“Think of it as Avengers 2.5” is something insiders have been saying for a while about Civil War, but what does that mean? It means that the new Avengers team that is left at the end of Age of Ultron will show up, as it’s Steve Rogers’ new pet project. This means Don Cheadle as War Machine, Anthony Mackie as Falcon, Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow, Paul Bettany as Vision and Elizabeth Olsen as Scarlett Witch. We will also see the return of Jeremy Renner as Hawkeye, despite the near-retirement vibe we received from him at the end of Age of Ultron. And finally, Paul Rudd will show up as Ant-Man makes his first appearance alongside The Avengers. Cool.

2. The basic plot is what we thought it was.

Here’s the official plot from Marvel: “Captain America: Civil War picks up where Avengers: Age of Ultron left off, as Steve Rogers leads the new team of Avengers in their continued efforts to safeguard humanity. After another international incident involving the Avengers results in collateral damage, political pressure mounts to install a system of accountability and a governing body to determine when to enlist the services of the team. The new status quo fractures the Avengers while they try to protect the world from a new and nefarious villain.”

3. Hulk is still missing, but his past isn’t.

Missing from the casting announcement is any mention of Mark Ruffalo’s Hulk. This makes sense, as Hulk was last seen flying away in isolation. It’s likely that he will be missing for a while in the MCU, probably off doing cool stuff in a solo movie that will never be made. Let’s just assume he goes to Planet Hulk and let that play out in our minds. Not missing is William Hurt returning as General Thunderbolt Ross, who starred alongside Edward Norton’s Bruce Banner in The Incredible Hulk. It seems as if Ross has a role to play in the superhero registration act that will be the central issue of contention between Tony Stark and Steve Rogers.

4. Wakanda will play a big role, while SHIELD may not.

Absent from the casting announcement, but always out there lurking with a borrowed helicarrier or two, are Samuel L. Jackson’s Nick Fury and Cobie Smulders’ Maria Hill. We’d never count them out, though. Who we can count in is the people of Wakanda and Chadwick Boseman as T’Challa, the Black Panther. It’s also been rumored that Martin Freeman’s Civil War character will be a government interrogator whose role will flex into Black Panther in 2018. This movie will likely serve as a nice little launch pad for Black Panther. It even leads me to wonder, assuming writers Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely are drawing from the comics, whether Black Panther will be used in a role similar to how Spider-Man was used in the comics – a character who ultimately switches sides, shifting the balance of power. It’s just a theory, which is probably wrong.

5. This is still a Captain America movie.

On top of all this multiverse stuffing, we will still get plenty of Captain America’s friends. Emily VanCamp is set to reprise her Winter Soldier role as Sharon Carter/Agent 13. Frank Grillo will return as Brock Rumlow/Crossbones and Sebastian Stan will return as Bucky Barnes/The Winter Soldier. In Age of Ultron, Falcon shows up long enough to mention to Steve Rogers that he’s still working “on that missing persons case,” so it stands to reason that Civil War may pick up with the hunt for The Winter Soldier.

It all seems very crowded but as we learned with Captain America: Civil War, directors Joe and Anthony Russo are very good at pacing their action and matching it with excellent character moments. How will they use those skills to control what is essentially another Avengers movie? We shall see. But it will be the proving grounds for them, as they have been tasked with Avengers: Infinity War. The march toward the Russo-led super event begins now.

Neil Miller is the persistently-bearded Publisher of Film School Rejects, Nonfics, and One Perfect Shot. He's also the Executive Producer of the upcoming One Perfect Shot TV show (HBO Max, 2021) and the co-host of The Storm: A LOST Rewatch podcast. He can be found on Twitter here: @rejects (He/Him)