8 Things I learned on the set of “Captain America: Civil War”

Last summer, I got the amazing opportunity to fly to Atlanta and visit the set of Captain America: Civil War. Since Disney and Marvel embargoes are of the air tight, Rumpelstiltskin-take-your-first-born-child variety (and understandably so—they were giving a ragtag group of journalists/fanboys and girls access to the set of one of the most highly-anticipated movies of 2016), I spent months going over the details in my head and frustrating every friend who knew I’d gone to set, but couldn’t pry any details out of me. Extreme? Maybe. But I wasn’t going to be the person who accidentally leaked a spoiler.

Now that the embargo has been lifted though, let’s talk about Captain America: Civil War and everything I learned about life on a big-time Marvel movie set.

The airport from the trailers is a gigantic green screen. 


This isn’t really a surprise. We all know that modern movies (especially the big budget, summer tentpole ones) are heavy on CGI. What shocked me was just how much. This scene was filming the day I was on set and it was like watching Chris Evans run across a green screen-lined football field. Almost nothing in this GIF exists in the real world.

Captain America has so many shields.


There are literally dozens of them, customized to meet any need on set. Some are battle worn, some are pristine. Some are heavy, others not so much. There are about as many shields as there are moments when Cap uses one.

And I got to hold one. 

MARVEL'S CAPTAIN AMERICA: CIVIL WAR - Zade Rosenthal © 2015 MVLFFLLC. TM & © 2015 Marvel. All Rights Reserved.
MARVEL’S CAPTAIN AMERICA: CIVIL WAR – Zade Rosenthal © 2015 MVLFFLLC. TM & © 2015 Marvel. All Rights Reserved.

It was the best. It was exactly as cool as you’d imagine.

The real hero on set was the Watermelon PA.

It was summer in Atlanta and it was unbearably hot. I was sweating beyond belief and I wasn’t even wearing a full-body super suit. It was hot enough that one glorious, life-saving PA walked around set passing out cool slices of watermelon and proved to everyone what a real hero looks like.

Chris Evans is serious about #NoSpoilers.


It’s hard to talk about a movie as big and anticipated as Captain America: Civil War without accidentally letting a few spoilers slip. After two Captain America movies and two Avengers, Chris Evans sees potential spoilers coming a mile away. Ask him a spoiler-y question, and you’ll be met with a knowing smirk and a single word: “Risky.”

But he was willing spill about his favorite Avenger to work with. 


“I’ve grown to really like my scenes with Scarlett [Johansson],” Evans said. “Something about that relationship, because I don’t think it drifts into a romantic place. I think it’s a place where we each just need somebody. She’s kind of been a loner for a long time and probably avoided friendships for professional purposes. And I had no friends because I was frozen. But I think in Cap 2 there was this opposites attract thing where we kind of found camaraderie, and now it’s like a really nice brother and sister bond. There’s some nice scenes in this one.”

So, you know, all of the “awws” for that.

Don’t expect a Hawkeye or Scarlet Witch movie any time soon.


When Jeremy Renner and Elizabeth Olsen were asked if they had pushed for movies of their own, they said quickly and in perfect unison: “Nope!” So, there’s that.

Anthony Mackie didn’t know he was an Avenger until the rest of us did. 


“Like when they asked me to do Avengers (Age of Ultron), they sent me two scenes. There are two hours and seven minutes around those two scenes, but I never got to read it,” he explained. “When we were at the premiere I was like, ‘Cool.’ I’m with my son and he gets to see his daddy in two scenes in The Avengers. By the end of the movie I turn around and they’re like, ‘Avengers Assemble!’ I’m like, ‘HOLY SHIT! I’M AN AVENGER!’ So, I turn around to everybody with me and they were like, ‘Dude! You’re a fuckin’ Avenger! This is fuckin’ amazing.’ So, that’s the story of my Marvel life.”

And that’s the best superhero origin story ever.