It is one of the coolest scenes in Avengers: Endgame – when Captain America, having traveled back in time to the New York of The Avengers, meets his own self (who mistakes future Cap for Loki) and the two engage in a brutal fight.
Learning a section of the fight minutes before shooting it. Sam and Daniel Hargrave are LEGENDS. Stuntmen and women are the unsung heroes of the marvel world. https://t.co/mu5jgYyEbh pic.twitter.com/Nfx8UiZw4k
— Chris Evans (@ChrisEvans) 17 maj 2019
According to The effects house responsible for putting that fight together was the team at Lola VFX, led by supervisor Trent Claus, it was a little more complicated than Evans facing off against a stunt double.
“Depending on the shot, and it really varied by shot, sometimes Chris would play the Cap that’s most visible to the camera, and the opposite would be played by a stunt double, sometimes Chris would play both Caps,”
“We would shoot it twice, once with him in one role and once in the other role, so obviously, in each case then, he’s playing opposite a stunt double, and then when it comes to the final comps, what you see on screen, it’s always Chris’s face.”
“Sometimes it’s on the body of a stunt double, and sometimes it’s a split comp where we’ve merged two different performances of Chris, so it really varies shot to shot, whichever worked best for that moment.”
– Trent Claus
The entire trip back to the Battle of New York was god-sent fan service for Captain America diehards. First, Cap got in the elevator with his old Hydra enemies, poised with tension to recreate the iconic Winter Soldier fight scene. Instead, Endgame subverts this superbly, adding a cheeky reference to Cap’s dubious comic book allegiance before a Cap-on-Cap Capfight complete with The First Avenger’s “I could do this all day,” references to Peggy and Bucky, and Cap admiring his own perfect posterior.
The Marvel Universe movies are filled with humor and fan service, but Chris Evans’ Captain America was always far more likely to deliver a rousing inspirational speech than a wisecrack. The character is known for his sincerity and loyalty, being a square-jawed square with an unwavering moral compass. This is perhaps why the bit about his owning “America’s ass” in Avengers: Endgame became such a breakout, meme moment.
Like many jokes, this one is told in three parts, though that wasn’t always the intention. At first, it was just a one-off quip from Tony Stark, one of the endless cracks he makes even in the most extreme circumstances.
“It sort of grew on its own,”
Endgame co-writer Christopher Markus told SYFY WIRE this week.
“The first thing that was there was Tony looking at Cap’s terrible Avengers outfit and going, ‘that suit does nothing for your ass.’
That stood on its own for a while, and then Ant-Man was added to the scene, and he said,
‘I think that’s America’s ass.’ And that was the joke for a while.”
It was only much later, during film reshoots, that it was decided that Cap himself would get in on the gag.
“We redid the Cap on Cap fight, the ending of it, and that helped us tremendously,”
co-writer Stephen McFeely explained, referring to a showdown between 2012-era Captain America and his time-traveling self, a fight waged over the Mind Stone.
“And then we needed to get out of that scene a little differently, and there [2012 Cap] was, slumped on the ground with his butt in the air.”
As Markus explains it, the writers asked themselves a crucial question: “Can we put another ass in the movie?” The answer was yes.