Interview with Chris Evans for Captain America The Winter Soldier
Besides getting to pre-screen Muppets Most Wanted, The Pirate Fairy and DisneyNature Bears, I was able to view Captain American: The Winter Soldier. I will be posting my review of the film on Friday so I’ll tell you more details about it then but I will say it is one you will not want to miss!
What qualities in Captain America does Chris Evans find in himself? Evans said Captain America is such a good guy and always trying to find ways to improve. He said he is always working towards evolving on a daily basis just like Captain America. During our interview, Evans seemed like just as good of a guy as his character in the movie.
Evans said he grew up with a kid named Charlie Morris who is just like Captain America. He’s the best kid he knows. He’s an Eagle scout which isn’t easy. Evans went on to say how good of a man Charlie Morris was and how he was a genuinely good man that would always put himself last. When Evans took the role, he told Charlie, “Listen. I’m modeling this after you.” What a great character to aspire to be! Sounds like we can all learn a thing or two from Mr. Morris.
The first scene in the movie was in an elevator and absolutely amazing. Evans said it was a tough scene and the first thing they shot. He said, “It was awful, because you have these great stuntmen that I had worked with for about a month prior, choreographing that fight in a warehouse where we had built a little fake model elevator. So you’re rehearsing the dance. It’s literally a dance. It’s, you know, you might as well be on your feet, doing the salsa. It literally is just rhythm and steps and beats, and, you know, with every person that you disable and drop, the fight continues with me.”
Doing the fight scenes is like working out for two, three hours a day and extremely exhausting. He also said, “But for a scene like that, you know, they yell action and you give everything, even though it’s a fake fight. It’s exhausting. They call cut. You got about 30 seconds to kind of catch your breath. And then you do it again.” Sounds like it is a lot of hard work every day! Evans looks like he stays in amazing shape for doing the scenes.
Evans continued to talk about the fight scene and how exhausting it can be, “And you do that all day, so by the end of the day you realize, I’ve been working out all day. All day! This isn’t normal. This isn’t human. You fall asleep before your head hits the pillow. So at the end of those three days, you know, at the end of this scene, there was just this collective applause. It really felt like a giant accomplishment, and a solid way to kick off the movie, but it was a chore. But worth it.”
The first time Evans seen himself as Captain America it was terrifying. He was still pretty insecure and a little apprehensive about taking the role. There was a simultaneous joy for him, but at the same time, a deep fear. But that’s eroded over time for him, and now it’s very familiar, and it feels very comfortable. He said, “It feels great now, and damn, if I had said no, I would have been the biggest fool on the planet.” I have to agree. Chris Evans is absolutely perfect as Captain America.
I asked Evans a fun question, “Who would win in a fight between Batman and Capt. America?” Here’s his response:
Oh. You’ve gotta go Captain America. Come on. I thought you were going to say Captain America and the Human Torch. That’s a tougher question. Batman? Batman? What does he have? It’s gotta be Captain America.
If Evans had a chance to play another superhero he said he misses Johnny Storm and likes Human Torch. He was a fun guy for him to play in the Fantastic Four. Evans thought about other superheros and said, “I would say someone like Iron Man, but no one can touch Robert Downey Jr. It’s fun to play someone with life. It’s fun to play someone who enjoys embracing their abilities, and Johnny Storm was a lot of fun to play. And that costume was comfy. It was like a wetsuit. It was perfect.”
We were also curious to know how many different shields did Evnas had to use during the filming and if he took any home. Of course he got to take one home. They gave him one that he has sitting in his house. He said him and his friends usually get it out after everyone’s had a few drinks and use it in funny photo shoots. I’d love to see those shots! He said he used probably four or five different shields in the movie. “There’s the one shield that’s the one shield that’s heavy and ridiculous, and you know, that’s just for show, and then every now and then, if you gotta hit somebody, you get this kind of fiberglass shield. And if you gotta throw it, you get a foam shield. But there’s a bunch of different shields but they did send me one,” said Evans.
When asked about scenes where Captain American runs through walls and doors Evans said he did do a few of those himself. Evans explained, “In the first film, you’re establishing Captain America. You’re establishing his ability, and he’s going to be a little clunky with his coordination. And then in the second film, with The Avengers, you’ve got so many people to attend to, there’s not much opportunity to kind of dive into his individual skill set. But, with this movie, we really got to kind of show why he’s — he can’t just be, you know, Jason Bourne.”
“This can’t just be a really good fighter. There needs to be something that earns his role on the team of the Avengers, so there has to be a superhero element, and in this film, when I first met with LaRusso, we talked about his fight style. We need to step that up. He needs to be stronger, faster, his reflexes, his agility. So, even scenes like that where you see this guy busting through doors without breaking a stride, it just kind of emphasizes his power.”
Evans most memorable moment from the film was when he saw Robert Redford walk in the door. Evans said everyone was nervous and scared that day. Everybody was scared. There was a whole buzz on the whole set. But it’s Robert Redford. Evans said he grew up watching this guy. He is a living legend. It was very intimidating but exciting and rewarding for the actors. Evans said, “Just sharing the screen with him, I mean, c’mon.”
We asked Evans what it was like preparing for the fight scenes. Did they prepare with the martial arts and is he comfortable with it? Here’s his response:
Comfortable now. You know. In the beginning it’s a tricky process, and it’s tough realizing you just — certain things, you’re not good at right away. You just want to be like, “I can do that,” and then you’re awful and you’re like, “I guess I can’t do that.” One of the things that I had — in between the first Captain America and the first Avengers, I had played the Captain America video game. I don’t know if anyone’s played the video game. I’m not really a video game guy. Someone handed me the controller, and I was playing, and the way Cap moves in the video game, there’s a fluidity and it’s very acrobatic.
It’s very aerial. Very — he uses his environment, and it’s almost this beautiful, smooth dance, and when I first met with LaRusso, I said, “Have you played the video game?” And truthfully, I swear to God, they said: “You know what? We referenced the video game, too.” I said, “Good, good, we’re on the same page. But that means we need to incorporate a little bit more of an acrobatic approach to fighting.” And so we put myself in gymnastic classes, which is something I always wanted to do, kind of, anyway. I mean, I wanted to go play on like, the balance beam, but they were like, “No. We gotta get you doing –” It was more like it was tumbling, essentially. Parkour-style gymnastic stuff. Flipping, and spinning, and just kind of getting a sense of your body in the air. So we did about two months of that. We did two months, a few hours, each day, and it was invaluable. It really lends itself to a lot of those fight scenes.
Of course, we were anxious to know what might be next for Captain America but Evans let us know that Marvel is pretty hush-hush about upcoming films. We’ll just have to wait and see! Check out the trailer for Captain America: The Winter Soldier below:
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Captain America: The Winter Soldier releases in theaters everywhere on April 4, 2014!