ByKristin Lai, writer at Creators.co
MP Staff Writer, cinephile and resident Slytherclaw // UCLA Alumna // Follow me on Twitter: kristin_lai
Kristin Lai

It's the final stretch for those of us poor souls living Stateside who still haven't seen Captain America: Civil War. Even though the movie is yet to hit its wide release, those behind the massive superhero brawl are already reflecting on what they've accomplished and starting to look forward to the future of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

In addition to brining back MCU mainstays Captain America, Iron Man, Black Widow, Hawkeye, Winter Solider, Falcon, War Machine, Scarlet Witch and Vision, Civil War also brings Ant-Man, Black Panther and Spider-Man into the superhero skirmish. Even given the two-and-a-half-hour runtime, fitting in that many characters without feeling rushed is a formidable task for even the most talented writers.

In a Q&A with The Hollywood Reporter, veteran Marvel screenwriters Stephen McFeely and Christopher Markus discussed how they found the means to introduce us to a myriad of new(ish) characters in Captain America: Civil War and what they hope to achieve in their upcoming projects.

Origin Stories

As most fans could have guessed, Civil War is a little too busy to include origin stories. While there's still interest in knowing how some of these newer MCU characters, like Black Panther, came to be, there's a time and a place for an origin story. Markus addresses this and their decision to skip out on the background details:

"Part of the fun of comics is in coming upon a new character or new superhero that is fully formed and then finding out where they came from. Spider-man has had five movies prior to now so it isn't necessary to give them an origin, but it's fun to just come in on their kid. The same thing with Panther — this is not his origin in this movie, but he has been introduced so now you can go into the mechanics of a real plot as opposed to having a half-hour where he become that guy and then having less time for plot.
"I think it makes for a better movie if people are just coming in. It also makes for a more organic Universe, where previously existing things are intersecting in an interesting way."

Finding Room For New Faces

When it came to Black Panther and Spider-Man fitting in, the writers brought them into the fold because their involvement felt very organic to the storyline and the source material. According to McFeely, both characters had reason to be part of Civil War and served specific purposes:

"We needed a character who sat outside of the Avengers who was wronged by their actions and could take party in the festivities, if you will, and not have the same agenda to either side of the Avengers. By the same token we needed another fresh face — an ingenue — who would work with the Avengers and his ark would be something like, 'Look I am playing on the big team!' We needed those different perspectives on the same conflict, people who didn't have the same angst about everything because they hadn't shared five movies with these people."

The Future of the MCU

In addition to the hefty résumés of the MCU veterans, McFeely and Markus will soon be taking on the Avengers: Infinity War series. With a bevy of beloved comic book characters to choose from, how are they planning to take what they've so far built with the Avengers and converge it with Infinity Wars?

CM: "There are a lot of index cards."
SM: "We learned with Civil War that you can have different stories that rotate around a central question. So when we have people all of the universe, relating to one central thing, it is going to cohere more than having five separate strands that you are hoping will bang into each other by accident. This is nothing new. In Star Wars there are a lot of different things happening on a lot of different planets but it all comes together."

Although bringing together these two complicated and superhero-filled worlds might seem daunting, we haven't been steered wrong in the MCU so far. With the overwhelmingly positive early reviews for Captain America: Civil War, I think we have little cause for concern.

Captain America: Civil War will be released in the US on May 6.

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(Source: The Hollywood Reporter)

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