This Friday brings the ultimate clash of the MCU titans. Fans looking forward to the release of Captain America: Civil War are excited for a story that effectively throws eight years of shared universe-building out the window (at least superficially). Captain America and his followers will face off against Iron Man and his cohorts, and the results are bound to be epic.

But what is the real story behind the Avengers’ split? For fans looking to delve deeper, a new featurette explores the rationale behind the all-out war in the MCU.

The short feature offers a quick summary of Civil War’s inciting events. Star Chris Evans and executive producer Nate Moore begin the feature by explaining Steve Rogers’ background with Bucky Barnes and how he’s always kept an eye out for the once-scrawny Rogers. Their shared film, The Winter Soldier, laid the groundwork for the initial rift which starts Civil War by showing Cap’s devotion to his sometimes-wayward friend. Although Civil War is about the Avengers, ultimately it’s also story about the friendship between Barnes and Rogers.

captain america civil war teams Captain America: Civil War Featurette Looks at the Films Official Story

In the second main segment of the featurette, Marvel guru Kevin Feige, and the film’s directors, James and Anthony Russo, explore the Sokovia Accords and the escalation into Civil War. It is explained that as the collateral damage from the Avengers’ conflicts accrues, many of the world’s governments band together to hold these super-humans responsible. Fresh off of his troubles with HYDRA masquerading as S.H.I.E.L.D. and the World Security Council trying to nuke NYC, Cap is wary of authority figures. And his anti-Registration sentiments will clash with Iron Man’s guilt over the human cost.

As the Russo Brothers explore in the final section, part of the challenge of making Civil War was creating a multifaceted conflict. Audiences already identify and love many of these characters from their previous associations with the MCU. Causing a rift between the already contentious superhero team wouldn’t be too difficult, but having a clear villain would undermine the thought-provoking storyline and simplify what is, in essence, an intriguing reflection of the political differences and personal moralities of a complex world.

Since the reviews are generally positive thus far, it seems the cast and crew of Civil War have succeeded in making an accessible and complicated superhero picture. If Civil War does as well on U.S. soil, as it has globally, Marvel will be in great shape as they open up Phase 3. Hopefully, the MCU will continue this thread of intelligent comic book movie-making, as audiences are more appreciative of multi-layered storytelling than Hollywood often realizes.

Captain America: Civil War opens in theaters May 6, 2016, followed by Doctor Strange – November 4, 2016; Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 – May 5, 2017; Spider-Man: Homecoming – July 7, 2017; Thor: Ragnarok – November 3, 2017; Black Panther – February 16, 2018; Avengers: Infinity War Part 1 – May 4, 2018; Ant-Man and the Wasp – July 6, 2018; Captain Marvel – March 8, 2019; Avengers: Infinity War Part 2 – May 3, 2019; and as-yet untitled Marvel movies on July 12, 2019, and on May 1, July 10, and November 6 in 2020.

Source: Marvel (via Comicbook.com)

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