'Captain America: Civil War' To Introduce Baron Zemo

A Production Weekly casting call for 'Captain America: Civil War' indicates that Daniel Bruhl will be playing Baron Zemo in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Baron Helmut Zemo in Marvel Comics

[Update: April 26, 2015 - Daniel Bruhl confirms Baron Zemo role in Captain America: Civil War]

In November, Daniel Bruhl was quietly cast for a key role in Marvel's Captain America: Civil War. The official announcement only explained that his talent will serve him well sharing "the screen with some of [their] biggest heroes." The trades at the time revealed that whatever character Bruhl was playing from Marvel Comics could see him also return in an even bigger role in Doctor Strange which also releases in theaters in 2016.

There's still nothing official but it seems fitting at this point that Bruhl co-starred with Thor (Chris Hemsworth) in Rush and Doctor Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) in The Fifth Estate. Thanks to casting calls surrounding the Captain America 3 production beginning in Atlanta in April, we may finally know for certain who Bruhl will be playing.

An unofficial casting call listed on the website made the rounds yesterday and was used by many as "confirmation" that Daniel Bruhl will indeed be playing the villainous Baron Zemo in Captain America: Civil War from the synopsis listed in the posting. The network of websites where this information came from however, is loaded with broken links and inactive emails and the same info could not be found on legitimate casting websites used in Atlanta so we waited and reached out to the webmaster, Alan Baltes, who uses sites like this to publish and sell "Actors Resource Guide eBooks."

He confirmed that the information came from Production Weekly - who get their info from Disney - and we verified that Captain America: Civil War (in production under the codename "Sputnik") was listed in last week's issue.

Daniel Bruhl
Daniel Bruhl

While still unofficial, Baron Zemo is an obvious choice and a good fit for the German-raised actor and is one of the top villains speculated on from readers and fans. We already know from everyone involved that Captain America: Civil War will be quite a bit different than the Civil War crossover event in Marvel Comics and so Zemo's role in it could be adapted differently as well to fit him into Civil War, and if rumors are true, in Doctor Strange.

Baron Zemo is another creation of Stan Lee and Jack Kirby whose history dates back to WWII where he fought with The Red Skull (played by Hugo Weaving in The First Avenger) against Captain America. Zemo was also a Nazi scientist and weapon maker, visually distinctive thanks to a unique hood that got stuck to his face during a confrontation with Cap. Given the timelines of the movies and when audiences will meet Zemo in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, it's more likely that Zemo's son, Baron Helmut Zemo, will be adapted instead with his father potentially used as connective thread to Cap's past. It's a potentially smart way to tie back to the character's origins, the Red Skull and Hydra, which are all being explored still in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. on ABC.

With Baron von Strucker (Thomas Kretschmann), yet another classic Hydra villain, having a role in The Avengers: Age of Ultron (and other films in the future), Hydra isn't going anywhere anytime soon. And given how certain villains are treated adapted and occasionally merged with others (looking at Iron Man 2's Whiplash) in the films, Daniel Bruhl could also be playing a version of Baron Blood - another Marvel Comics villain whose history sees him sided with the Nazis in WWII. Blood, who has a vampiric twist to his origins and abilities, encounters both Cap and Doctor Strange in his career. It's a safe bet that those specific supernatural plot elements will not be adapted if that's the case, but expect Zemo to be orchestrating some of the Civil War mess from behind-the-scenes.

Whether there are elements of Blood in Daniel Bruhl's character or not, Zemo's legacy is a long one and depending on the length of the multi-picture contract Marvel sign Bruhl to, we could be seeing him in several films for years to come, even after (and if) Chris Evans' Steve Rogers is eventually killed off. Bring on the Thunderbolts in Phase 4!

[Update: April 26, 2015 - Daniel Bruhl confirms Baron Zemo role in Captain America: Civil War]


Next: How Robert Downey Jr. Made 'Civil War' Possible


The Avengers: Age of Ultron releases in theaters on May 1 2015, followed by Ant-Man on July 17 2015, Captain America: Civil War on May 6 2016, Doctor Strange on November 4 2016, Guardians of the Galaxy 2 on May 5 2017, Thor: Ragnarok on July 28, 2017, Black Panther on November 3 2017, Avengers: Infinity War - Part 1 on May 4 2018, Captain Marvel on July 6 2018, Inhumans on November 2 2018 and Avengers: Infinity War - Part 2 on May 3 2019.

Sources: Marvel, Production Weekly

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