Joe Johnston Talks Captain America Status

While Kenneth Branagh's Thor is the Marvel movie I'm most looking forward to, I'm also very eager to see what Joe Johnston will bring moviegoers and comic fans with his period piece live-action adaptation of Captain America, the man, the hero, who will lead good against evil in The Avengers.

Two weeks back we reported on some words that director Joe Johnston shared about the upcoming The First Avenger: Captain America movie which is set to begin filming this summer. He revealed that it will not be something we'd expect, that it will follow the comics to a certain extent but that it will go off in a completely different direction.

These are Johnston's words that Screen Rant reported earlier in January:

“It’s not going to be a Captain America that you expect. It’s something different. It is influenced by the comic book, but it goes off in a completely different direction. It’s the origin story of Captain America. It’s mostly period—there are modern, present-day bookends on it—but it’s basically the story of how Steve Rogers becomes Captain America.”

“It’s got some great action sequences in it and some incredible stuff that we’ve never seen before. But at the heart of it, it’s a story about this kid who all he wants to do is fit in. This thing happens and he still doesn’t fit in. And he has to prove himself a hero—essentially go AWOL to save a friend. Eventually at the very end, I don’t want to give away to much, but he does fit in. But it’s the journey of getting him there that’s interesting. And it’s a lot of fun.”

We know the film is set in World War II and now we have at least some idea of the plot and origins that will be presented in the film. We also know how it ends up with him in present day, set to join The Avengers but how he gets from point A to point B we'll have to wait and see and that's the fun of it.

We've been waiting for quite some time to hear something official on the casting front as Thor was way ahead of the game in this respect and has already commenced shooting. The First Avenger: Captain America however, is scheduled to debut the same summer as Thor in 2011 only two months off, but we have nothing yet on who may play Steve Rogers. We only know that Marvel Studios has a wishlist of actors for the lead part but still don't know if they're going with someone new and relatively unknown (as they did with Chris Hemsworth as Thor) or if they'll be grabbing an A-lister to carry the film and lead The Avengers as originally speculated nearly two years ago after the success of Iron Man.

So, where are we now on the status of Captain America? Joe Johnston has a more recent interview with Film Journal where the main topic is Johnston's long-delayed Wolfman remake but they managed to squeeze in a bit on our star-sprangled hero to find out just what's up with the project.

"We're in prep... Rick Heinrichs is production-designing and we're set up down in Manhattan Beach [California]. It's the part of the process that I love the most... We have eight or ten really talented artists, and we all just sit around all day and draw pictures and say, 'Hey, wouldn't it be cool if we could do this?' It's that phase of the production where money doesn't matter: ‘Let's put all the greatest stuff up on the wall and [then later] see what we can afford.'"

If you're a reader of the books, the following snippet from the interview may hint a bit more towards what we can expect in terms of style of the character and stories that are influencing the movie.

The film, he says at this early stage, will begin "in 1942, 1943" during World War II. "The stuff in the ’60s and ’70s [comic books] we're sort of avoiding. We're going back to the ’40s, and then forward to what they're doing with Captain America now."

Let's hope we start getting something soon - I'd absolutely hate it if this movie had to be pushed back again to 2012 and have next year only feature one Marvel Studios flick (again). If they can hit the June start date for production, we'll likely get to see something special alongside the Thor presentation at this summer's San Diego Comic-Con, and we'll definitely be there for that!

What do you think of this and what direction should Johnston and Marvel go with for picking their Captain America?

If you're interested, check out our discussion on what the Captain America and Thor costumes may look like.

Iron Man 2 opens May 7, 2010, Thor opens May 5, 2011 , The First Avenger: Captain America hits July 22, 2011 and The Avengers is scheduled to debut May 4, 2012.

Source: Film Journal, Box Office

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Joe Johnston Talks Captain America Status