Marvel Star Sebastian Stan Says He Felt like He Played Bucky for 2 or 3 Years Before Anyone Noticed

Captain America and Avengers star Sebastian Stan admits he feels like he played Bucky Barnes for “at least two, three years” before anyone noticed. The Marvel star, who reprises that role when Disney+ series The Falcon and the Winter Soldier begins filming Monday, opened up about his eight-year journey in the Marvel Cinematic Universe at Fandemic Tour Houston, where Stan reflected on sage advice from Marvel Comics visionary Stan Lee and the tearful sendoff with Captain America star Chris Evans in the final moments of Avengers: Endgame.

“It’s funny, we were at the autograph table an hour ago, and somebody turned to me at one point and said, ‘Did you ever think this was gonna happen?’ I was like, ‘No,’” Stan said with a laugh. “I actually played this character for at least two, three years before I felt like people noticed.”

Stan debuted as Barnes, Steve Rogers’ oldest friend, in 2011’s Captain America: The First Avenger. By his own admission, Stan wasn’t recognized until around the time of its sequel, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, in 2014.

“I mean, The First Avenger — maybe you guys have — but nobody was stopping me on the street,” Stan said. “I just treated it like any other character. I just wanted to honor the source material, and what Stan Lee had envisioned, and I was really lucky to have met him, and for him to kind of remind me: ‘Whatever you’re doing, just remember he’s a good guy.’ Because the Winter [Soldier] thing is kinda fun, but the guy inside is a good guy. But the MCU differs a little bit here and there, so we had to kind of adjust to that, and in the movie, Bucky Barnes was actually sort of a cooler guy and whatever. And that’s where we ended up today.”

The star also teased Marvel Studios’ “crazy” and big-budget television series The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, where Stan partners with Anthony Mackie after the events of Endgame. The longtime Marvel stars are joined by returning stars Emily VanCamp and Daniel Brühl alongside franchise newcomer Wyatt Russell.

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“I have seen [scripts] and I’m so excited about it. It’s going to be so cool and kind of crazy,” Stan said. “All I can say is it’s just new and different from what you’ve seen so far. I mean, it will be totally in line with everything that has happened and what we’ve seen and so on, but these characters are getting such additional mileage in terms of learning about who they are now, what they feel, what they’re thinking, and there’s a lot of action, comedy — you know there’s going to be comedy. I feel like you’re going to be happy. I think you’re going to be very happy. And there’s some crazy stuff, like stuff you don’t see coming from anywhere.”

The Falcon and the Winter Soldier premieres Fall 2020 exclusively on the Disney+ streaming service.