Chris Evans has been on a ten-movie journey with Captain America, but things come to a close for the actor with ‘Avengers: Endgame’. RSNG caught up with him ahead of the movie’s release to find out about his ‘brotherhood’ with Chris Hemsworth, whether he’d rather play Spiderman and how he thinks his last outing as Cap will be received…
RSNG Is it true that you would rather have played Spiderman rather than Captain America?
CHRIS EVANS, ACTOR ‘I love Captain America, but Spiderman was my childhood hero. I would have loved doing scenes like attaching myself to the sides of buildings and trying to spring from one building to the next. But I would have hated to wear Spiderman's mask. I'm very claustrophobic and I doubt whether I could have worn that kind of full suit and mask for hours a day on a set. I much prefer my Captain America outfit which I think is cooler anyway! Haha.’
‘If you're dedicated to being an actor, you’re going to be able to make people see you in different roles no matter what kind of image you may have.’
‘I have a pretty strong sense of determination when it comes to something I really want. I get that from my mother who is very Italian and she can be very opinionated and very vocal... I also know that because of the exposure and recognition that the Captain Americana and Avengers films have given me that I can get other films made and play may different kinds of characters. I'm very grateful to be in this kind of position, know that I have security, and a lot of doors are open to me. I'm never going to complain about that!’
RSNG You’ve spent time on the stage but are very familiar with the green screens of comic book movies – what tools do you use to act in front of one?
CE ‘I’d say that the most beneficial tool you can develop to apply to green screen is just having a really vivid imagination as a child. As a kid, that’s where you really soaked in make-believe and pretending to be whatever it is you want to be. You’re just playing and you’re having fun. So, if you had a really vivid imagination as a kid then I think that’s what gets you through those green screen days.’
‘I'm very different from Cap – he’s very inward-looking and not very comfortable being open with his emotions’
RSNG You're good friends with Chris Hemsworth (Thor), so it must be fun for you to keep getting to work together?
CE ‘What's been great for us is how we've bonded over the years. We've been through this journey together and we were both kind of apprehensive and nervous when we started out in these films. Neither of us knew how things would turn out and we've been able to kind of talk about it and have this brotherly support for each other. I'm very glad to have been able to get to know Chris and become good friends with him.’
RSNG You seem to be a pretty gregarious guy – does that make it more interesting for you to play a more reserved personality like Captain America?
CE ‘I'm very different from Cap. He's very inward-looking and not very comfortable being open with his emotions. I'm very honest and direct with people, and I don't like hiding what I think about things. It's not very tough to get to know me.’
RSNG Is there a certain burden on you to stay in top shape even when you're not in training to play Captain America?
CE ‘To a certain extent. But you try not to become obsessed with your appearance. The problem is that there are always people in the industry who want you to be more muscled, more sculpted, more tanned, and so on. I've never been the kind of guy who's going to use face creams and moisturisers. There are some things I draw the line at, haha!’
‘What I enjoy doing to stay in shape is playing different kinds of sports with my friends rather than spending hours and hours every week in a gym. At least when you do sports there's a sense of competition and camaraderie. It's also good for your mental well-being to get out of the gym and not fuss about your biceps.’
RSNG How have you changed since your early days in Hollywood?
CE ‘I've calmed down a lot. I was very nervous at the beginning because I wasn't sure what direction I wanted to take and how things would play out. Life in general is a lot easier now.’
RSNG You've long been nurturing ambitions as a director and made your directorial debut with Before We Go. What was that experience like for you?
CE ‘Directing is something I've been aiming towards for a long time. I love acting and I will always love that. It's very fulfilling but as an actor you're only a small piece of the overall puzzle and I love being in control when it comes to the process. If I could, I would get involved in every aspect of a film – the lighting, the camera work, the sets. I love all of it. As a director, you get to put all the pieces together and the trick is to bring all that creativity into one satisfying whole.’
‘Marvel make sure that they really stick a flag in the ground on this one and they pull out all of the stops’
RSNG We obviously know the title of the new Avengers movie… but if you could have given it a name yourself, what would you have called it?
CE ‘Hmmm, this is a tough question. I have clarified this before, but I know that people think when I tweeted about the film, they thought it was a spoiler. Regardless of how the Avengers film ends, I would have tweeted the exact same thing. That last day of filming was a very emotional day and it was the culmination of almost 10 years of filming, 22 movies and this unbelievable tapestry and you feel a lot more emotions than even I thought that I would feel.’
‘I just thought that it was appropriate to share the gratitude and I know it had a ripple effect, but I was never confirming or denying anything and to that end, I think that any sort of label I would give the fourth Avenger film would give away too much.’
‘The one thing that I can say is that if Marvel have proven anything at all, then it is certainly the fact that they completely know what they are doing, and I don’t think that they have missed a beat. Their worst mistakes are other studios’ biggest blessings.’
‘They don’t miss, they just do not miss and they haven’t missed with the new film and it really is just an incredible culmination of this unbelievable tapestry of the six or seven individual plots coming together. I know that it has never been done before and I know that it will never be done again.’
‘Marvel make sure that they really stick a flag in the ground on this one and they pull out all of the stops, completely. I can just say to you that you will not be disappointed.’
RSNG It seems like you all really get along as actors during and after filming – is there anyone who you felt has been a mentor or a close friend along the way?
CE ‘I mean, I guess it’s kind of obvious and people will probably already know that my answer will be Robert Downey Jnr. I’ve always felt supported by him and he really brings everyone in to the group, and makes sure that everybody feels welcome; especially on this last film.’
‘No matter what it feels like to me, I always try to imagine what it feels like to him. Because he really did start this, and he really is so irreplaceable. Nobody can ever be ‘Iron Man’. It’s not a role like a Superman or a Batman that can find different incarnations. No-one can touch it. No-one can. None of this would happen without him and so the easy answer for me is Downey.’
WHAT NEXT? Watch the new trailer for Avengers: Endgame.