As far as most Marvel fans are concerned, Chris Evans practically is Captain America at this point, so charismatic and likable is his take on the character. Much like Robert Downey Jr.’s close association with Iron Man, it’s almost impossible to imagine someone other than Evans playing Captain America. That’s why it’s so surprising to hear that he almost didn’t take the job.
Appearing as a guest on Jimmy Kimmel Live! this week, Chris Evans discussed his experience playing the role and admitted that he was initially reluctant to take the part, citing his anxiety over taking on such a huge commitment as the reason for his reticence:
“At first, it was some nine-picture contract. … Doing movies one at a time, if all of a sudden you decide you don’t want to do them anymore, you’re afforded the opportunity to take a step back and recalibrate. When you have a giant contract, all of a sudden, you’re not responding well? Too bad. You gotta suit up again. That was scary.”
It’s easy to understand why Evans would have been so reluctant to make such a major life decision. While being cast as a superhero in a Marvel movie is generally a ticket to superstardom nowadays, it’s also a giant commitment that limits actors from taking on many other projects.
It’s also important to remember that when Evans signed on to play Cap, he had no idea that the franchise would become the massive hit it is today, so agreeing to lock yourself in for nine movies (eventually reduced down to six) sounds like a crazy proposition in hindsight. No wonder Evans claims that he turned down the role several times before finally agreeing to do it.
Chris Evans will reprise his role as Captain America for the fifth time in Captain America: Civil War, which hits theaters on May 6. After that, he’s obligated to make one more appearance as the character in the two-part crossover event Avengers: Infinity War. Whether or not he signs on for more films after, we’re just happy that he agreed to take the part to begin with.