Marvel Bombshell: Robert Downey Jr. to Begin Civil War in ‘Captain America 3’

By October 13, 2014

In recent days, Robert Downey Jr. has hinted that big announcements from Marvel are on the way. Everyone has been freaking out about whether or not he’d return for a fourth Iron Man movie, but according to a new report in Variety, Kevin Feige and Marvel are thinking much bigger: Downey is in final negotiations to reprise his role as Tony Stark in Captain America 3, which would pit him against Chris Evans’ Steve Rogers in a film version of the Civil War storyline from the comics. This is HUGE.

Cap vs Iron Man

For those who aren’t familiar, the story sees Stark and Rogers face off over the Superhero Registration Act, which forces anyone with superhero abilities to basically serve as a police force for the federal government. Stark supports the program, but Rogers doesn’t, and in the comics, declare themselves to the federal government. Stark is in support of the program, but Rogers doesn’t because it threatens the civil liberties of people with superpowers (in the comics, everyone is forced to reveal their secret identities, which shouldn’t be a problem in the movies considering most of the heroes are already well known as their real selves).

This isn’t a cameo role for Downey, like in The Incredible Hulk. He’s going to have a massive part in this movie, and the effects will shake the Marvel Cinematic Universe to its core, stretching into a fourth Avengers movie. So while Downey was previously only signed for Avengers: Age of Ultron and Avengers 3, Captain America 3 will be another Marvel film for him and he might even parlay this into an appearance in Avengers 4, which is going to be much different than when fans originally assumed Thanos would be the big bad in Avengers 3.

On the business side of things: Downey will reportedly receive a $40 million payday for Captain America 3, plus points on the back end and an extra bump if Cap 3 does bigger numbers than Captain America: The Winter Soldier. (Which it definitely will.)

Downey Evans

Badass Digest adds a bit more to the story, saying (spoiler alert) that Cap’s newly-assembled team at the end of Avengers: Age of Ultron – which as of now consists of Falcon, War Machine, Quicksilver, Scarlet Witch, Black Widow, and “probably” The Vision, though that particular scene hasn’t been shot yet, so those players could change – could be featured in Captain America 3, which they’re saying will either be called Captain America: Civil War or Captain America: Fallen Son. Steve Rogers won’t be in Avengers 3, allowing Marvel to keep Chris Evans on for one more movie before having to renegotiate with him as they just did with Downey.

At the end of Cap 3 the Marvel Cinematic Universe will be in a tough, dark place, with the heroes scattered and defeated. That will continue through Avengers 3, and it will leave the world open to the threat of Thanos in either Avengers 4 or the big universe-wide team-up movie, whichever comes first.

Also of note: BAD claims that Anthony and Joe Russo are Marvel’s golden boys right now, and that the brothers are in talks to direct Avengers 3 and possibly Avengers 4.

Wow. This is a lot to process, and it’s a gigantic development in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. What do you think? Are you geeking out about seeing how the Civil War story plays out on the big screen?

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Ben is a writer living in Los Angeles, California. His work has been featured at,,,, and many more sites across the web. Some of his favorite movies include The Rocketeer, Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy, Tombstone, Lucky Number Slevin, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, Collateral, Double Indemnity, Back to the Future and The Prestige. Follow him on Twitter: @BenPears.