Exclusive: Captain America: Civil War Directors Explain How Their Spider-Man Is Different

  • -

Spider-Man is one of the biggest mysteries of Captain America: Civil War. The character has yet to appear in any trailers or other promotional material for the film. In an exclusive interview with the Russo brothers ahead of Wizard World New OrleansComicBook.com asked if fans will see Spider-Man in any trailers or on any merchandise before Captain America: Civil War is released.

“No. We really can't comment on that,” replied Anthony Russo.

“Part of making these movies is maintaining surprise so that everybody's excited and that's one we're going to make fans surprised,” added Joe Russo.

Even though the Russo Brothers couldn’t reveal if they are going to pull a Luke Skywalker with Spider-Man and save him for the movie, they were able to elaborate on how Tom Holland’s Spider-Man will be different from Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield’s Spider-Mans.

“We took a very personal approach to the character,” explained Joe Russo. “He was my favorite character growing up, so the opportunity to bring Spider-Man to the screen is a dream come true. It's something that I spent a lot of time thinking about as a kid. We had thought back to the things that excited us about him as a character when we were younger, and one of the most important components of that was that he's a high schooler burdened with incredible powers and responsibility. That really differentiates him from every other character in the Marvel universe as opposed to other superheroes. For us, it was extremely important that we cast somebody very close to the age of a high school student. The previous films had adults playing a high schooler. We wanted more of an authenticity to the casting. We were very specific about that. We wanted an energy and charisma from the character, an energy, but also an insecurity that would make him fun to watch in contrast to the confident superheroes.

It was also important to us that the actor that was cast feel contemporary because the other films that portrayed where he lived is more... they honored the comic books in terms of the choices. But you go look at the home that Tobey Maguire lived in in Raimi’s Spider-Man was... those were very expensive homes. We wanted to relate it to the reality…”

“The everyman appeal of the character, which is something we've always loved,” added Anthony Russo.

“A character growing up with his aunt in New York, a single income family… Where would they live? What would that look like? Where could they afford to live? We asked ourselves all those questions,” continued Joe Russo. “We try to take a very logical and realistic and naturalistic approach to the character. Again, in combination those are all of the things that we try to do, and of course, to bring our own touches, too.”

“I would also add, again, we're introducing this character in a Captain America movie,” said Anthony Russo. “If you look at what we did with Winter Soldier with the Cap character in terms of bringing him into the modern world, trying to ground the movie tonally into something that was a step toward real-world, at least to the degree you can do that in a superhero movie, that's still the tonal universe that we're playing in in Civil War. We're bringing a character… we're bringing Spider-Man into the movie in that universe, now, in that specific tonal stylistic world. I think underscoring everything Joe was saying about your question in terms of how were we thinking about the character in relation to past interpretations of the character, part of our choices were all so colored by the specifics of the world what we were playing in with these two Captain America movies, meaning Winter Soldier and Civil War. It's a very specific tonal world. It's a little more grounded and a little more hard-core contemporary. That was also coloring our choices a lot about the character on Spider-Man.”

“We're fans, also. I still go to midnight screenings of movies when they come out,” said Joe Russo. “I'm still first in line to buy the new issue of the book. I still have my entire collection in my closet. It takes up entirely too much space in my closet but I'll never give it up.

These things are really important to us and because we have a history with these characters, all of them, I read almost every comic book character you could think of when I was a kid. I have at least several histories of every character. There's a deep history that we can draw upon where we had great emotional and strong psychological connection to the characters as a child. We want to reach into that and understand what elementally motivated you to love the character. That's what we try to bring out in the characters now. There are certain things. We talked about Cap. There are things that bothered me as a kid about him. We tried to correct those things in our interpretation of the character.

I want to be clear. We're not trying to denigrate other interpretations of Spider-Man. Raimi's movies are fantastic. Spider-Man one and two are amazing. Two, is one of if not my favorite comic book movie of all time. But he made a very strong choice with those movies from a color palate standpoint to a costume standpoint, execution standpoint, camerawork standpoint to honor the feeling of the comic book. We're trying to honor the feeling of naturalism and to honor the feeling of reality. The harder we can pull these characters into reality, the better for us, especially because we're all so connected now through social media, the Internet. We're all so dialed in to what's happening in current events. That it's important for us that these characters live in the world that we live in because it makes them more real and it makes our experience of watching them more passionate and more well-rounded.”

We’ll have even more from our interview with the Russo Brothers over the weekend. If you want to meet the Russo Brothers in person, they are appearing at this weekend’s New Orleans Wizard World Comic Con.

 

Captain America: Civil War is scheduled to be released in movie theaters on May 6, 2016.