Just like the original Civil War storyline, Captain America: Civil War will see most of the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s heroes divided over ideological differences. The main draw of the two previews released so far has been the intense battle between the two sides, a.k.a. Team Iron Man and Team Captain America. Fists flying, lasers blasting, claws unsheathing, it’s going to be intense. However, the movie isn’t going to start out with the protagonists already at each other’s throats, instead taking the proper amount of time to set the stage for the battle.

As Anthony Mackie, a.k.a. the MCU’s Falcon, told Empire, there’s definitely going to be a lot of moving pieces to set the stage for the massive conflict, but the tensions building up are among the best aspects of Captain America: Civil War, calling it a “suspense thriller.” As he put it:
The build-up to the fight is what makes it so interesting. Because there are so many different factions of who’s right and who’s wrong and who supports who. Once we get all of that out the way, then it becomes more action-packed and more of us kicking each other’s’ ass. If it’s a civil war, you have to establish why there’s a war. You can’t just start fighting and expect people to appreciate it. What Marvel is very good at doing is making these stories about characters and story and then layering action on top of that. And this holds true to that.

When we last left many of the Avengers in Avengers: Age of Ultron, there was no indication that they were on the cusp of fighting each other, so to start with them already feuding wouldn’t make any sense. The specifics of what leads to the heroes fighting in Captain America: Civil War are still a mystery. What we do know is that there’s an international incident involving the Avengers which will result in collateral damage, thus prompting the world’s governments to draft the Sokovia Accords and get Earth’s Mightiest Heroes and other superhumans registered. This, along with other factors (like the manhunt for Bucky Barnes) causes the split between the heroes, specifically with Iron Man and Captain America. Tony Stark favors working through official channels while Steve Rogers believes they can’t effectively get their job done with government interference, thus leading this “disagreement.” 

Joining Captain America are Hawkeye, Scarlet Witch, Falcon, Winter Soldier and Ant-Man, while Iron Man has War Machine, Black Widow, Vision and Black Panther helping him out. There’s no word yet on who Spider-Man will side with during the movie, and considering how secretive marketing has been with the Wall-Crawler, it’s doubtful we’ll learn his allegiance in the previews. Whichever side comes out on top, there are going to be consequences for everyone involved, and there might even be a major death or two. This is war, after all, and casualties are to be expected.

Captain America: Civil War charges into theaters on May 5.

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