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Cap gets a new face

March 23, 2010 - Keith Frederick

The latest news on the lineup of "Avengers" films from Marvel Studios is that Chris Evans has been cast as Steve Rogers, better known as Captain America.

The film, "The First Avenger: Captain America," is due out next July and will be the real test for the "Avengers" project, which encompasses a series of films that will conclude with the landmark "Avengers" film in 2012. If moviegoers can't get behind "Captain America" - particularly with the similar "Thor" film coming out next May - the "Avengers" film could be headed for disaster.

But that's a line of thought for another day. The question right now is whether or not Evans is right for the role of the ultimate American hero. It's a bit of an in-between casting when you look at it in comparison to the other two "Avengers" films: the "Iron Man" series and "Thor." Evans isn't a mega-star like Robert Downey Jr. in "Iron Man." But neither is he a nobody like "Thor" star Chris Hemsworth, whose biggest role previously was Captain Kirk's soon-to-be-dead dad in 2009's "Star Trek" reboot.

Evans is just famous enough to bring some star power to the role of Steve Rogers, but not so well-known that he can't disappear into the character. The problem is that Evans might not be believable enough as an action hero.

His previous superhero role, Johnny Storm in the horrible "Fantastic Four" films, only showed that he was able to put on some muscle. To play Captain America, a "super-soldier," he would have to bulk up quite a bit more to be believable. And he would need to perfect a voice that has a command authority in it. He can't put on a gravelly voice and end up like Christian Bale's laughable growl in the "Batman" films; Captain America is a field leader for the most powerful people in the world. His voice must carry a certain force.

Evans is certainly charismatic. And a heartthrob for a leading man can't hurt. But I hope he understands the level of commitment the character's fans will demand.

Here's hoping.

 
 

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Chris Evans is Marvel's Captain America. But is he right for the part?