Why Chris Evans may almost be done playing Captain America

Contributed by
Apr 27, 2017, 11:48 AM EDT (Updated)

A new interview hints that Chris Evans may be hanging up his shield after the next two Avengers movies.

That interview comes courtesy of Esquire, where Evans -- whose new film Gifted comes out next month -- is the subject of the latest issue's cover story. Not far into the story, the article addresses Evans' future with the Marvel Cinematic Universe:

Settling in on the couch, he groans. Evans explains that he's hurting all over because he just started his workout routine the day before to get in shape for the next two Captain America films. The movies will be shot back to back beginning in April. After that, no more red- white-and-blue costume for the thirty-five-year-old. He will have fulfilled his contract.

Evans famously turned down the part of Cap at first, having been burned by his experience with the superhero genre as the Human Torch in two Fantastic Four films. It didn't help matters that Marvel wanted to sign him to an unprecedented nine-picture deal.

The studio eventually agreed to six, Evans came around, and now it seems inconceivable to think of anyone else in the role. Over the course of three superb Captain America movies and two Avengers outings (and one brief cameo in Thor: The Dark World), Evans has owned the role of Cap completely and made him the moral center of the Marvel Cinematic Universe -- perhaps only Robert Downey Jr. as Tony Stark is linked so closely to his character.

So why quit? As the Esquire article details, it's not just the five months it takes on average to shoot a Marvel movie; it's the reshoots, promotional duties, workout routines and everything else that eats up his schedule -- and then it's time to make the next one.

With little space between Marvel installments to star in and/or direct other movies, let alone pursue other personal projects, Evans has perhaps figured that after seven years, it's time to get off the ride. Marvel may try to sign him for more movies or limited appearances in other characters' films (as Downey is doing these days as Iron Man), but Evans may want a complete break.

As for what the future will hold for Captain America, Sebastian Stan's Bucky Barnes or Anthony Mackie's Falcon could both pick up the shield just as they've done in the comics, or Steve Rogers could eventually be recast. But since we don't know yet what the MCU will look like in the aftermath of Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers 4, all that is conjecture for now.

What do you think will happen? Should Evans stick around in a reduced role, or should Marvel either recast or pass the Captain America mantle to one of his buddies?

(via Collider)