‘Captain America: The Winter Soldier’ and ‘Captain America: Civil War’ are two of the most well-received entries in the MCU catalogue, and a big part of what makes those films work (aside from the Russo Brothers’ skill with engaging ensemble storytelling) is the incredible action. While the Russo Brothers deserve major props for having the vision to pull it off, props also must be given to the choreographers, stuntmen, storyboarders, effects artists, and all the other crew members who bring these sequences to life.
One of those crew members is James Young, who has worked as a fight choreographer on ‘Captain America: The Winter Soldier’, ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’, ‘Avengers: Age of Ultron’, and ‘Captain America: Civil War’. As you can see from his filmography, the man knows his Marvel. Since ‘Civil War’ arrives on DVD/Blu-ray in a few weeks, Eric Eisenberg at CinemaBlend had the opportunity to interview James Young about his work on the film. There, Young talked about the challenges that come with balancing an ensemble cast full of super-powered fan-favorites, especially after coming off something as grounded as ‘Winter Soldier’.
The number one thing that was the hardest, that we always try to look to do, was to give every character their hero moment. Like in the airport scene. All these characters in this fight can have their own movie – like Iron Man: own movie. Ant-Man, own movie. Captain America. All these guys could have a standalone movie, so in a fight where it’s 14 characters, 15 characters beating the snot out of each other, how do you make each one relevant?
That was the biggest challenge. That’s the challenge with Avengers in general. How do you make all these characters shine on screen and not have one of them overshadow the other? I think in Civil War, that was the biggest goal that we set ourselves up to achieve. Let’s try to make every character pull something off in this fight that changes the fight for a better way.
Much like how it was important to ‘Civil War’ that both Steve and Tony’s political, philosophical, and emotional viewpoints be equally understandable, it’s important for both sides of the superhero schism to be evenly matched, and it sounds like this was a huge mission statement for the filmmakers. In the end, both sides have solid motivation to be fighting, and every hero gets an ass-kicking, applause-worthy moment.
You can relive the action when ‘Captain America: Civil War’ arrives on DVD/Blu-ray September 13th.