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Captain America: Civil War is probably the most fan-ticipated superhero film all year. Yes the film has to contend with the likes of Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice and Marvel's R-Rated counterpart, Deadpool - but Captain America: Civil War is shaping up to be all the hype it has been built up to be. The film will cross boundaries in terms of character development as well as challenge the perceptions fans had about some of their favorite superheroes. We're bound to see some of the more strong-willed Avengers in the film act out of their usual character because of the situations they're in, it is a convoluted world the Avengers live in so every decision won't be lightly made when those decisions may determine the future of the MCU. Aside from the MCU being changed by the events of Captain America: Civil War, it seems like a major change may happen to the Avengers' main roster. The change that may have already been foreshadowed by previous Marvel films, and the Marvel comics event 'Civil War' may have already predicted this change.
The change that i'm referring to is Steve Rogers stepping down from the role of Captain America before the end of the film, Captain America: Civil War and handing the mantle of Captain America and his shield down to his best friend, Bucky Barnes. To back up, SPOILER ALERT: In the Marvel comics event, Civil War, the conflict comes to a close with Steve Rogers' Captain America being assassinated by Crossbones' Brock Rumlow. Steve Rogers hasn't really died but he goes underground, while he's underground, Bucky Barnes takes on the role of Captain America. The reason this change is likely to come is because the clues are being pieced together by Marvel for fans to figure this out.
Clue 1, Chris Evans contract to Marvel to play Captain America is only set for one or two more appearances and Sebastian Stan has signed on for several more films that extends beyond Avengers: Infinity War. This means that Chris Evans' time as Steve Rogers/Captain America may be coming to an end so that Sebastian Stan may step into the shoes of Captain America.
Clue 2, Directors, The Russo brothers have teased that Captain America: Civil War will end with a controversial ending that could mean several things but a controversial ending for a Marvel film will most likely mean that a popular main character will die or a universally felt event will have some disastrous consequences to the main stars of the MCU. If the Russo brothers are teasing a death or just a change in leader than the death/change they could be teasing is most likely Steve Rogers being assassinated for Bucky Barnes to become Captain America in Avengers: Infinty War. However, the Russo brothers commenting on how the film will end with a controversial ending could mean that another Avenger, whose also taken on the mantle of Captain America in their comic-book run could be the next Captain America. Sam Wilson(Falcon) is the most recent reincarnation of Captain America who will also be a part of Captain America: Civil War; his possible promotion to Captain America could be what the Russo brothers are referring to in a controversial ending. Were Steve Rogers to be out of commission or dead, than it wouldn't be unreasonable for his close friend, fellow Avenger, Falcon to step up in Steve's place. This could be what the directors are considering controversial seeing is that Sam Wilson didn't take on the role of Captain America until after Bucky Barnes donned the red, white, and blue. Sebastian Stan who plays Bucky Barnes is signed on for several more Marvel Cinematic films which means he may not be set up to be Captain America right away but could play the character further down the line after Saw Wilson, played by actor Anthony Mackie may gets the opportunity to be Captain America. It would make more sense for Falcon to become the next Captain America with him being more aligned with Steve Rogers' philosophies on the world; Falcon's taking of the shield would make more sense than giving the unpredictable, Bucky Barnes the praised title of Captain America before him. Bucky Barnes is still the assassin, Winter Soldier and he may not be Captain America material just yet.
Clue 3, The comic-book event that mirrors Captain America: Civil War is called Civil War. And the Marvel comic run, Civil War, concluded with Steve Rogers' Captain America being assassinated by none other than, villainous Crossbones. Crossbones is also set to be a player in the movie, whose played by actor Frank Grillo. Crossbones has also been spotted in the recent Captain America: Civil War trailer fighting Captain America. A fight doesn't mean that Steve Rogers will be assassinated during that particular scene but it does provide clues as to what might happen based on both of these characters having key roles in their comic-book counterparts as well as their roles in the MCU which mimic the events of Marvel's iconic Civil War.
Clue 4, Steve Rogers is on the losing side of the conflict. Captain America is completely against supervision and accountability for enhanced individuals(i.e. The Sokovia Accords). The world would be hunting for Captain America as a wanted man just like Bucky Barnes is still being sought out after, the events wouldn't mirror what happened in Captain America: Winter Soldier wherein the world was deceived by the fact that Steve Rogers/Captain America had become a traitor to his country but in fact Steve Rogers was one of the only remaining patriots left fighting for his country during the film. This time around, there'll be superhero entities pursuing Captain America and his team. Along with the pursuit, if the conflict does end with Cap's team defeated and Captain America detained, Steve Rogers could make a last ditch effort to hand his shield over to Bucky Barnes before creating an opportunity for him to escape. Steve Rogers' fight as Captain America has shown that he's willing to put his belief in the cause he stands for before his own life, so if Steve sees an opportunity for his friend Bucky to escape, along with giving Bucky his shield, then Steve could be informally handing down the mantle of Captain America down to Bucky without explicitly telling Bucky what he needs to do with the shield; if the events of Civil War to come to pass in a similar manner then Steve Rogers' effort to let Bucky escape may end up with Steve Rogers taking a death blow meant to stop Bucky from escaping. Although if Bucky Barnes does don Captain America's suit and shield, he will most likely be leading a team of Secret Avengers in the next Avengers film seeing that the events of Civil War will most likely still see Captain America being hunted down as a vigilante unless the film ends on a different conclusion where a new team of Avengers and Captain America are accepted by the world as leading authorities on super-powered and enhanced individuals.
All these clues point to Chris Evans' time as Captain America coming to a close and the introduction to a new Captain America, probably played by either Sebastain Stan's Bucky Barnes or Anthony Mackie's Sam Wilson. With these possible changes being included during the climax of the film, a change to the role of Captain America will definitely change the dynamic of the future Avenger-centrist films. Do you think Bucky Barnes will be donning Cap's shield before the end of Captain America: Civil War or will Sam Wilson have to pick up the shield in light of Steve Rogers' death?