Is Steve Rogers Dead? Anthony Mackie Has A Funny Take On What ‘Old Cap’ Is Up To

Chris Evans as Old Cap at the end of Avengers: Endgame
(Image credit: Marvel Studios)

The future of the Marvel Cinematic Universe is starting to form up in the upcoming Marvel movies of Phase 5, with threads old and new being woven into the next chapter. One of the outstanding connections we’re waiting to see pursued is Anthony Mackie’s new version of Captain America, which was revealed in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier’s season finale. That near future debut is enough to revive a question that Mackie has now addressed in the aftermath of his big MCU promotion: is Steve Rogers dead? According to him, “Old Cap” is alive and well, and it gave the actor a chance to lay down a funny take on what the retired hero is up to.

Appearing on Jimmy Kimmel Live!, the actor known as Sam Wilson in the Marvel ranks spoke out against those who find it so easy to proclaim Chris Evans’ star spangled man dead. Anthony Mackie feels that outlook has fans of the Marvel hero are depriving him of the joys of retirement, which include a pretty sweet perk he mentioned in these thoughts: 

I mean, he ain’t dead yet. Why you trying to kill Steve? That’s age discrimination! … Old Cap get like discount breakfast at iHop. You know, all of us wanna be Old Cap. Yeah, I think [Old Cap] is alive. I didn’t see him die. I dunno, I saw Chris two weeks ago and he looked pretty good.

Last seen handing over his shield in Avengers: Endgame, Captain Steve Rogers presumably restored each of the Infinity Stones to their rightful places in the timeline, and lived out a satisfying life with Peggy Carter (Hayley Atwell). Dancing together to their song, one of Marvel's iconic romances left Steve in a really good place. 

So what’s not to say that Steve’s settled into a life where he’s regularly ordering a 55+ Breakfast Sampler to start the day, and watching Jeopardy with dinner every night? He's certainly earned it after defeating HYDRA, Thanos, and the bureaucracy of the Sokovia Accords. Well, part of what’s fueled the fire for those who think Cap has shuffled off his mortal coil is his absence in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier.

Anthony Mackie's History In The MCU

Anthony Mackie as Captain America in The Falcon and The Winter Soldier

(Image credit: Marvel Studios)

Here’s the complete history of Anthony Mackie’s time as Sam Wilson in the MCU, all of which can be relived through the magic of a Disney+ subscription.

Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014)
Avengers: Age of Ultron / Ant-Man (2015)
Captain America: Civil War (2016)
Avengers: Infinity War (2018)
Avengers: Endgame (2019)
The Falcon and the Winter Soldier (2021)

By time we pick up with Sam Wilson in the Disney+ adventure that gave him his current mantle, there’s an unmistakable hint of mourning his friend and mentor. That could equally apply to either a withdrawal from public or mortal life, but again there’s been no official ruling on that matter in the Marvel Studios canon. Which leaves some vital flexibility in the future of the MCU.

Much as Anthony Mackie mentioned above, no one has seen or outwardly acknowledged the proposed death of “The First Avenger.” Which only recalls an important rule of movies and comics alike: if you didn’t see them die on screen, there’s always room for them to return. Then again, creators like Mission: Impossible franchise mastermind Christopher McQuarrie seem to think that even a brutal on-screen demise is negotiable these days.

Perhaps there's hope for Chris Evans to return as Old Cap in some future installment. What we know about Captain America: New World Order is that it’s the first cinematic entry in Sam Wilson’s tenure as the New Cap. Whether or not that story addresses Old Cap’s fate is yet to be seen. 

That could change real soon as we get closer to the May 3, 2024 debut intended for the continuation of one of the MCU’s originating franchises. Though if anyone at IHOP is reading this, someone in your marketing department should approach Kevin Feige for a scene that sees Sam and Steve catching up over some pancakes. Just a suggestion.

Mike Reyes
Senior Movies Contributor

Mike Reyes is the Senior Movie Contributor at CinemaBlend, though that title’s more of a guideline really. Passionate about entertainment since grade school, the movies have always held a special place in his life, which explains his current occupation. Mike graduated from Drew University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science, but swore off of running for public office a long time ago. Mike's expertise ranges from James Bond to everything Alita, making for a brilliantly eclectic resume. He fights for the user.