***Disclosure: I attended The #CaptainAmericaEvent . My flight, lodgings, and expenses were covered by Disney and myself. Pictures provided by Disney. All opinions are 100% mine. ***
MARVEL teaming up with Disney is one of the best partnerships ever made. It has benefited both companies AND us as fans and viewers. I had the chance to talk with Producer & Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige last year in anticipation for Iron Man 3 and was super excited to hear what he had in store in the MARVEL franchise to come. We got to interview him at the Captain America press junket and what I like most about him is that he’s just a regular guy. Both times I’ve met him he has came in with just a ball cap and a smile. You can tell he genuinely loves his job and gets you excited for what’s to come as well.
Q: Can you tell us what comes next?
Kevin: I can tell you what actively we’re actually on. Now we’re spending a lot of time now in the cutting room on “Guardians of the Galaxy” which comes out August 1st. We just released the Teaser for it recently In about 2 weeks, we start filming “Avengers Age of Ultron”. So that’s coming up very fast and that will be the next Movie up in May of 2015. Then in about 10 weeks, we start filming “Ant-Man” with Michael Douglas and Paul Rudd and that comes out in July of 2015.
We haven’t announced what comes after that in 2016/2017 but we’re actively working on any number of things and are beginning to hone in on sort of exactly what the Movies will be in ’16 and ’17 but it’s slightly too early to talk about.
Q: What problems did you have on the Big Screen vs. the Comics?
Kevin: Those are two of the reasons to do it. It has never been done before which is, you don’t get a chance very often to do something in this business that’s never been done before, 100 years of Cinema. Now somebody will point out somewhere they’re done it before but your point is taken. That is what the Comics have been It was a shared Universe from its inception essentially in the Comics. It was sort of Character by Characters, Studio by Studio, that was impossible but when we became our own Studio and had, got the financing to do that, it was the first idea was make a great Ironman movie, um, and the second idea was wait a minute, we can begin to tie these together.
The biggest challenge is making that continuity and that interconnectivity broaden the Universe, broaden the Audience as opposed to make it feel like a Club. Making it fold in on itself and say Oh you need to know everything that’s going to see any of these Movies. We work very hard to make each of the Movies feel like a stand-alone Movie, but at the same time connect to everything else. That’s been our sort of our Mission Statement and that’s what we try to stick to.
Q: Is it intentional that you always incorporate older Superheroes?
Kevin: I think that’s indicative of our development process. We just believe that’s the best way to bring the Villains into it. It’s more personal in this Movie than in any other Movie because of who the Winter Soldier is but, you know, Darth Vader is Luke Skywalker’s Father, right? I mean, that’s — that’s Spoiler, Shoot, Sorry. That is often times from the Comics, from Mythology. Lunky’s been, you know, a Photo Source for thousands of years. That is just a wonderful way to link a Hero to Villain. And that’s what we’ve done.
Q: Talk about the controversy around Winter Soldier.
Kevin: Comic Fans always knew sort of two things in about peak Characters die and come back to life in Comics like in Soap Operas, like in any sort of Fiction all the time. There are two Characters in the Marvel Universe that are never gonna come back to life, Uncle Ben and Bucky Barnes. About 10 years ago or 12 years ago, a Comic Book Writer, Ed Brubaker went to Publishing. I didn’t have anything to do with it, and said, I have an idea to bring Bucky Barnes back. I’m sure they’re like what are you talking about? You can’t do that. And they pitched the idea and it was great. It was the Winter Soldier idea and it was done so well and you’re right, I think Fans went No, you can’t– Oh that’s great, we love that. We just took the successful blueprint that they had already done and brought it into this Movie.
Q: Talk about the difference in the tone.
Kevin: Well it was 2 things. I mean one was we always want our Movies to feel differently. We have 2 Movies a year coming out. If they start to feel redundant, they start to feel like Cookie Cutter, off the same Assembly line, people are gonna lose interest and we will lose interest. I’m not interested in making the same Movie over and over again. So it’s very important to us that we mix them up and that they feel very unique, each of the Films. We had a wonderful opportunity where you have a Character whose origins were in the 1940s. At the end of that Movie, we reveal that he’s now alive in the present day. He’s got a brief adventure in the Avengers Film but doesn’t have a lot of time to think about his current stay where he’s living, he’s got to stop this horrible event from happening.
So now this was the Movie where we got to say OK, here’s Steve in the modern day, let’s do something totally unique and that led us to the notion of doing the Marvel Superhero version of a ’70s Action Movie, a ’70s Political Thriller. He doesn’t fly, and he doesn’t go visit other Planets so that gave us an opportunity to do the kind of Action that we haven’t necessarily done before in our Movies which is a ground base and visceral, you know, car chases and hand to hand combat. What Steve’s Super power is other than sort of his strong moral foundation is he’s a Super Soldier. So you know, we always say take the best Olympian in each Field, add 10%, 20%, and that’s what Steve Rogers can do.
We wanted to showcase him in this Movie and we wanted to put him up against somebody that is equal to that, which is what the Winter Soldier was in a bad guy. So it really, I’m glad people are responding to how unique the tone of this Movie and how different, not just from the first Captain America Film but from any of our Movies that it has.