‘Captain America’ Star Gets Emotional Reflecting on “Full Circle” MCU Journey

in Entertainment, Marvel

Steve Rogers talking to Sam Wilson in Avengers: Endgame

Credit: Marvel Studios

Captain America has been a franchise staple since the early days of the MCU, and now that the superhero mantle has been passed onto Anthony Mackie’s Sam Wilson, the actor is reflecting on his emotional “full circle” journey with Marvel ahead of the release of Captain America: Brave New World (2024).

(Left) Anthony Mackie as Sam Wilson/Falcon (Right) Chris Evans as Steve Rogers/ Captain America in Marvel's Captain America: The Winter Soldier Running Scene On Your Left
Credit: Marvel Studios

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It’s been a long road for Sam Wilson, who’s getting ready to explore the next chapter of his MCU future with the fourth Captain America installment. The movie will see Anthony Mackie in the lead as the franchise’s new “star-spangled man with a plan” after Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) retired following the events of Avengers: Endgame (2019), passing over his shield to Sam to live a life with Peggy Carter (Hayley Atwell) after traveling back to the 1940s with the Time Stone.

Older Captain America talking to Sam Wilson about the Shield
Credit: Marvel Studios

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Steve left behind an incredible legacy as Captain America, which intimidates Sam away from adopting the superhero moniker for himself, as seen in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier series. In the aftermath of Endgame, he and Steve’s other close friend, James “Bucky” Barnes (Sebastian Stan), reluctantly work through their grief to work together on a dangerous mission that involves taking down a global terrorist organization called the Flag Smashers. Over the Disney+ show’s six-episode run, the two have to set aside their differences, laying the foundation for Sam to finally accept his new high-flying alter ago, swapping The Falcon for Captain America.

Anthony Mackie as MCU's Captain America
Credit: Marvel Studios

With the remainder of the MCU’s Phase Five and the highly-anticipated “Multiverse Saga” on the horizon, Mackie is revisiting his franchise debut in Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014). Shortly after wrapping filming on Captain America: Brave New World, which shared a familiar set from the second Cap installment, the actor told The Wrap that the location “kind of brought [his] Marvel experience full circle:”

It kind of brought my Marvel experience full circle because we shot in D.C. at the same hotel that we shot ‘Winter Soldier’ at.

Anthony Mackie holding Captain America's shield
Credit: Marvel Studios

Not only did Brave New World shoot several scenes in Washington, D.C., much like the sequel, but it also featured the same hotel where Sam threatens and later kidnaps HYDRA agent Jasper Sitwell in Winter Soldier. When looking back on the 2014 shoot, he explained that the hotel was “one of [his] first Marvel scenes,” and returning to it for the upcoming blockbuster proved “really emotional:”

One of my first Marvel scenes was me sitting at a table talking to the senator and me and Chris [Evans] and Scarlett [ Johansson] kidnapping him, and we go back, and we stay at the same hotel, and we shot at that same area. So in that regard, it was really emotional to think how far my character has come and where he is now after the ten years that I’ve been in the MCU.

anthony mackie as sam wilson in age of ultron
Credit: Marvel Studios

So much has changed in the MCU since Winter Soldier, with Steve and Natasha Romanoff now out of the picture. But some things haven’t changed, and it’s heartwarming to see Mackie recalling just how far he’s come since those early days of being passed by Steve during his morning jogs around Capitol Hill.

As for Brave New World, more details about what audiences can expect from the film are coming to light. For one, the upcoming Cap installment is expected to be overtly political, which makes sense when recalling Sam’s passionate monologue to world leaders towards the end of The Falcon and the Winter Solider. We also know that the movie intends to circle back on 2008’s The Incredible Hulk thanks to the presence of Tim Blake Nelson’s The Leader and Liv Tyler’s Betty Ross, and that Harrison Ford will make his Marvel debut as Thaddeus “Thunderbolt” Ross.

cap 4
Credit: Marvel Studios

For now, we’re still roughly a year out from Brave New World’s release date—given that the ongoing WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes won’t postpone its arrival in theaters. Plot specifics will surely be revealed in the coming months, and hopefully, we can look forward to seeing a trailer early next year.

Captain America: Brave New World flies into theaters on July 26, 2024.

What do you think of Anthony Mackie’s heartfelt “full circle” moment on the set of Captain America 4? Let us know in the comments below.

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