During an interview with The Town podcast, Marvel Studios producer Nate Moore revealed that studio head Kevin Feige rejected the original storyline for Captain America 3.
Moore stated that the original plot was completely different from the events of the Civil War. He explained that the storyline had centered around Baron Zemo and the Madbomb, a device that causes people to fight themselves. In the original script, the titular character and the Winter Soldier were to put a stop to the dangerous device.
However, Feige was not a fan of the plot, which he felt was not good enough. Moore stated, "[Feige] was like, 'That's not a big enough idea, guys.' And we're like, 'Let us write a draft, we'll prove it to you.' As we’re getting done with it… he pulls me into his office and he said, ‘You know, I think we should try to do Civil War.’ And I was like, ‘Kevin, we don’t have half the stuff that’s in Civil War. We don’t have the New Warriors, we don’t have… Here's all the reasons why we can’t do it'... There were so many things that we didn’t have. And he's like, 'Go home, read it, let's talk about it.'."
Moore followed Feige's instructions and read the Marvel Comics Civil War storyline. But, he maintained his stance that it would be incredibly difficult to pull off. Ultimately, Feige gave the team a chance to write a draft of the Baron Zemo and Madbomb storyline. However, the Marvel Studios head wasn’t satisfied and he eventually put his foot down on what the team should do.
Moore explained that Feige showed up at the writer's room and ordered everyone there to stop working on Madbomb and focus on Civil War instead. In Moore’s words, " I was like, ‘Ah, fuck.’ And Joe was like, ‘Yes! Civil War? Awesome!’ And then we had to figure out how to do Civil War."
Given the film’s performance, Moore had to admit that Feige was right. He said, "Look, it was scary and when you’re throwing out a whole thing and starting new, it’s always a bit weird, but he was right. He was right. We were still able to pay off the Bucky storyline. We still figured out how to use Zemo. But the central conceit of the movie was something that audiences would gravitate towards and they did."
The original idea Moore and the rest of the team conceived had high stakes. It was violent and would have placed the superheroes in harm’s way. However, Civil War had personal implications and conflict, which resonated with fans. The events of the Civil War pitted the Avengers against each other and had long-lasting repercussions on the entire MCU. Nevertheless, Moore and the team managed to incorporate a chunk of the original storyline into the film, including the introduction of Zemo as well as Steve Rogers’ reunion with his old friend Bucky Barnes.
Civil War followed the Avengers as they are split into two opposing factions led by Steve Rogers and Tony Stark. The split was the result of political pressure to ensure the Avengers were accountable and had government oversight. Rogers rejected this attempt, believing that the team should be free to operate without being beholden to anybody while Stark had an opposing view. Nevertheless, the team comes together to take out a common foe Hermut Zemo, who wants revenge for their actions in Sokovia which resulted in the death of his family.
Captain America: Civil War turned out to be one of the biggest Marvel Studios projects. It grossed a whopping $1.1 billion from a $250 million budget and featured all members of the Avengers apart from Thor and the Hulk.
In other Marvel news, Feige denied rumors Black Panther director Ryan Coogler will helm Avengers: Secret Wars. While he stated they hadn’t had any such conversation, the Marvel Studios head didn’t expressly state that it won’t happen. By the way, Feige recently teased the introduction of X-Men to the MCU.
Also, the fourth installment in the Captain America series titled Captain America: New World Order is currently in pre-production and will begin filming in early 2023. It will star Anthony Mackie as the new Captain America and, if all goes according to plan, will debut in theaters on May 3, 2024.