Superhero showdown: Which side rules in ‘Civil War’?

Robert Downey Jr. in "Captain America: Civil War." (Photo courtesy Marvel Studios)

Robert Downey Jr. in “Captain America: Civil War.” (Photo courtesy Marvel Studios)

By Rick Bentley
The Fresno Bee

LOS ANGELES — Should superheroes be under some type of control or allowed to work autonomously? That’s the question that divides the world’s most powerful defenders in “Captain America: Civil War.”

Those who believe champions should have freedom to work without controls line up behind Captain America (Chris Evans). Those who are convinced a little guidance isn’t a bad thing align with Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.).

Here’s a cheat sheet on each team:

Captain America (Chris Evans)
Comic intro: “Captain America Comics” No. 1 (1941)
Movie intro: His half-built shield appears in “Iron Man” (2008).
On being directed by the Russo brothers: “They’re just very easygoing guys who are not pretentious in any way and it is a pleasure just being around them. They also have this encyclopedic knowledge of film and they’re wonderful at being able to reference scenes in other films to bring actors or crew to a common ground.”
Ant-Man (Paul Rudd)
Comic intro: “Tales to Astonish” No. 27 (1962)
Movie intro: “Ant-Man” (2015)
Rudd talks about joining the team: “When we shot ‘Ant-Man,’ I thought, it’s amazing, it’s great, it’s really fun, but we were also kind of working in a bubble. When I showed up here for the first time and was doing a scene with Captain America and Falcon and all of them, I turned into a bit of a 10-year-old. It was pretty strange and really cool.”
Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan)
Comic intro: “Captain America Comics” No. 1 (1941)
Movie intro: “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” (2011)
Researching the role: “It’s always good to revisit the comics. But the good thing is I did a lot of that for the last movie. It always kind of sits with you. What’s great this time around is you are learning more things about the character.”
Falcon (Anthony Mackie)
Comic intro: “Captain America” No. 117 (1969)
Movie intro: “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” (2011)
On working with special effects: “The CGI stuff is a lot like doing theater. When I do ‘Cap’ I think of it like doing a play. When you are doing a play and look out at the audience, you have to imagine a fourth wall there. Your imagination has to take over and create the world outside you.”
Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner)
Comic intro: “Tales of Suspense” No. 57 (1964)
Movie intro: “Thor” (2011)
On Hawkeye working with Scarlet Witch: “I think Hawkeye and Scarlet Witch need each other in a lot of ways. Hawkeye needs her abilities for a lot of things and then she needs him to help her keep her head straight. She’s kind of a loose cannon, insecure and powerful, but that dynamic is terrifying in itself.”
Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen)
Comic intro: “The X-Men” No. 4 (1964)
Movie intro: “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” (2014)
Why Scarlet Witch joins Team Cap: “Wanda’s more terrified of causing harm to people than choosing a political side. She ends up fighting with Cap’s team. It was more about being accepted and less about actual political beliefs.”

Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.)
Comic intro: “Tales of Suspense” No. 39 (1963)
Movie intro: “Iron Man” (2008)
Downey on the arc of Tony Stark: “Anyone who sticks around for more than a minute and joins the party here, that’s where Marvel has done its smartest moves in making sure there is a real emotional impact to what is going on.”
Black Panther (Chadwick Boseman)
Comic intro: “Fantastic Four” No. 52 (1966)
Movie intro: “Captain America: Civil War” (2016)
Producer Kevin Feige on casting Boseman: “I’m not kidding when I say Chadwick was the only choice. We called him on a conference room speaker when we were developing the movie and got him somewhere in Switzerland. We asked him if he had ever heard of the Black Panther and he said ‘Yes. Yes. Why are you asking me that?’ He was very excited.”
Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson)
Comic intro: “Tales of Suspense” No. 52 (1964)
Movie intro: “Iron Man 2” (2010)
On getting to play her character for the fifth time: “She has a greater calling, and I think that’s what makes this character really heroic. She dug her heels in and did not go down the road that would be personally more desirable, to disappear and live off the map and have what everybody wants. In this film we really see her move closer to a leadership position.”
Spider-Man (Tom Holland)
Comic intro: “Amazing Fantasy” No. 15 (1962)
Movie intro: “Spider-Man” (2002)
Director Anthony Russo on adding Spider-Man to the mix: “We like movies that make us laugh and cry. For us it became very important to find a way to modulate the tone of the movie by bringing in characters that didn’t have the emotional investment that all of the Avengers have.”
Vision (Paul Bettany)
Comic intro: “Marvel Mystery Comics” No. 13 (1940)
Movie intro: “Iron Man” (2008) as voice of Jarvis.
On filming the big fight scene in Atlanta during the summer: “We are all there at the airport thinking, ‘How are they going to realize this epic battle visually?’ You look at around and everybody is in their costume and they look like superheroes and movie stars. And five minutes later, in 105 degrees, they looked a lot less like movie stars and a lot less like superheroes.”
War Machine (Don Cheadle)
Comic intro: “Iron Man” No. 118 (1979)
Movie intro: “Iron Man” (2008)
On lack of upgrades for War Machine: “We’ll see. It’s not over. I think there are potentially more tricks up War Machine’s sleeves. Maybe you will see them in the next film. Unless I die. I haven’t seen the film.”


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