Sebastian Stan: ‘Sometimes you watch the news & you don’t know what’s real’

Britain's Queen Elizabeth II is shown documents as she visits the new headquarters of the Royal Philatelic society in London on November 26, 2019.

Sebastian Stan is hustling for the Disney+ series The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, where Stan plays (you guessed it) the Winter Soldier. For the longest time, I didn’t know that Stan’s family came from Romania (when it was a communist/Soviet country) when he was just a child. But knowing that, doesn’t it make a lot of sense? He does give off a sort of European vibe, even though his accent is pure American. I was thinking about that as I read his GQ Hype cover story when he began talking about how timely this new Marvel series is about race and patriotism in America. You can read the full GQ Hype piece here. Some highlights:

He didn’t know The Falcon And The Winter Soldier would happen: “This wasn’t something long planned, not at all. Maybe Kevin [Feige] did, but he didn’t tell me about it. But once Anthony and I realised these changes were taking place to the storyline in Endgame, in particular to the story of Captain America, I think both of us sort of looked at one another and thought, ‘Well, we’re still here! We’re not dead! So, what happens to us now?’ This show is a revival, in spirit at least, of some of those buddy comedies that were so popular in the 1980s.”

He gets along well with Anthony Mackie: “Anthony and I both get a kick out of working together; we always have a lot of fun. Also, this show is six hour-long episodes, which gives us a lot more to play with than a two-hour film. ‘Buddy’ walked out of that last film with an identity crisis, so there’s a lot to dive into….Actually, now we’ve got these longer scenes together, there’s a lot more dialogue between us.”

Bucky is like James Dean or something: “He’s been silent for, well, almost all the movies and that’s what made him cool. He was cool because he didn’t open his mouth, a sort of less-is-more, brainwashed assassin. For this show I had to find his voice, in all senses, and do it in a way that was timely to what is going on in 2021.”

On the timeliness of the show: “Look, you can’t do a show that explores the title of Captain America without touching on some of the stuff we have seen on the news. In fact, I would argue this is Marvel’s most relevant show yet. Race, identity, patriotism… these issues have invariably boiled over into all our lives these past 12 months. We started filming The Falcon And The Winter Soldier in September 2019, I believe, and the scripts were already touching on all this stuff. Yet, as we filmed and developed, the delays pushing us into 2020, the world began catching up to certain things being explored. It became an even trippier experience for all of us. It also gave us a feeling of a much larger moral responsibility and I think, for me – certainly for Anthony, but also myself to a certain extent – work wasn’t just going to ‘work’ any longer. It felt like a real opportunity to ask questions, not only of the characters but also of ourselves and the audience.”

A Black Captain America: “A black Captain America is an incredibly powerful symbol, for all those reasons we were discussing, but also he was the right man from a character standpoint [to] take the shield, regardless of race. Bucky wouldn’t be emotionally intelligent enough or mentally stable enough to be able to handle such huge shoes. His moral compass is somewhat questionable too.”

Parallels with the real world: “Take Covid, for example. With the ‘Blip’ that happens at the end of Infinity War, Hulk reversing the deaths caused by Thanos, the idea of a big, tragic event with a long, dark, menacing shadow falling over everything since, you can see similarities here with the pandemic. Also what happened at the Capitol in the States just these past months. I mean, sometimes you watch the news and you don’t know what’s real or what’s not, right? But full credit to Marvel: it manages to touch on all the important topics while remaining entertainment, albeit entertainment with a message. It’s not like we have set out to lecture anyone.”

[From GQ Hype]

“I mean, sometimes you watch the news and you don’t know what’s real or what’s not, right?” Yes. I’ve honestly felt that way too at times, but honestly, if someone had scripted some of the dumbf–kery that’s happened in recent years, those scripts never would have been produced. “Okay, so there’s an actual plague which is killing thousands of people a day, right? And people… refuse to wear masks!” “Get out of here.” Oh how about this: “So there’s a violent insurrection and these traitors actually take control of the Capitol and they erect gallows, okay? And then… they all go home without being arrested.” So yeah, all of that.

Cover courtesy of British GQ.

You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

17 Responses to “Sebastian Stan: ‘Sometimes you watch the news & you don’t know what’s real’”

Comments are Closed

We close comments on older posts to fight comment spam.

  1. Elizabeth says:

    Oh well god forbid you “lecture” anyone. Mustn’t alienate the Maga fans.

    • Evenstar says:

      Lol, I’m not MAGA but I definitely don’t want Marvel trying to lecture me on race or politics, either. I think he meant you can include and talk about those topics, but also in an entertaining way rather than just talking at viewers about it.

    • Who ARE these people? says:

      If lecturing were shown to change minds or raise awareness, then bring it on, but it doesn’t. It tends to have the opposite effect.

      • Jules says:

        For sure, people who lecture and preach come off as fake-woke, just doing it for attention, and showing their own bias.

    • Kelis says:

      Isn’t this the avenger that travelled from hotspot to hotspot all during COVID? Like straight up vacations in a bunch of countries last summer?

      He’s good looking, but stupid. Love Mackie tho forever. This guy is a jerk for doing what he did during Covid

    • FF says:

      What he means is rather than have Captain America make a speech about American history and why Falcon deserves to be his successor, they decided to write a six ep series showing you all the issues at play and all the character’s personalities at play in a crisis, and show you why Falcon is the right guy instead.

      People – any people – generally respond better to show rather than tell/lecture.

  2. Astrid says:

    Can’t wait to be done with work today to watch the next episode. I’m really enjoying the Disney+ offerings.

  3. Darla says:

    I really love this show, and both he and Mackie deliver.

  4. Lunasf17 says:

    I side eye that comment about the news because that’s been a MAGA/QANON tactic for years. If everything is fake news then there is no way to actually know the truth and no one will ever know anything so believe whatever you want. I worked in the media for years and it’s not that hard. PBS is real news, Fox is not. Comments like these take responsibility away from people and make it ok to believe conspiracies.

    • WithTheAmerican says:

      And it’s exactly what Russia wants Americans to feel. So yeah, I side eye that too. If we don’t know what’s real, we won’t believe the bad things Russia and her stans are doing here.

      People don’t vote when they don’t know what to believe. Oldest tactic ever.

    • NCWoman says:

      Yes, it is a MAGA/QANON tactic. It is also true that news stories are shaped by agendas. For examples, stories about police shootings are almost always initially framed by a police viewpoint because that’s who the media can always find to speak with. There are a lot of reporters at even good medial outlets that do not follow sound journalistic practices and use access journalism, whether it’s access to the president or a police chief. In addition, while there are generally some national news organizations that are trustworthy, local news is often much more of a tossup, If, for example, your local news station is owned by Sinclair, you’re getting some news that is definitely filtered and may be “real” only if surrounding facts are left out. The Maga/QANON tactic takes hold with people precisely because there are so many problems in American media.

    • MrsBanjo says:

      He comes from a Communist-controlled region. He may have been a kid when he left, but the damage that that type of Russian-controlled propaganda can do is intergenerational. He knows full well what it’s like to be weary of media. He’s not excusing QAnon bullshit and the like.

      And let’s not play like the American Left-wing media is pure and untainted by propaganda. They were wholeheartedly pushing the “But Her Emails” bullshit in the lead-up to 2016, and happily contributed to giving Trump’s 2015 campaign airtime for the clicks.

      There are plenty of people on the left happily engaging in conspiracy bullshit. Ignoring that contribution only helps to further gaslight the people who’ve been hardest affected in the last decade. You can’t do and be better if you’re pretending you’re the best.

    • emu says:

      I think also that in the 24-hour news cycle where everyone is trying to break news and a lot of people actually get their information from Twitter – there is a LOT of speculation going on, a lot of which ending up being false. People also tend to conflate opinion/talking heads with actual news. And of course conspiracies are everywhere.

  5. Mabs A'Mabbin says:

    Have two premium male superheroes hook up. You won’t even need a script.

  6. emu says:

    Looks like he also lived in Vienna for four years! Pretty cool.