‘Captain America: Civil War’: Joe & Anthony Russo Explain Black Panther’s Superpowers

     May 9, 2016

Just before the release of Captain America: Civil War, Collider’s own Steve Weintraub took part in an exclusive conversation with directors Joe & Anthony Russo that lasted over an hour. We’ve talked to them about Avengers: Infinity War, what it will take to get a Black Widow movie, the chances of getting an LGBT character into the Marvel Cinematic Universe, their directing technique, and what it takes to get a Marvel directing gig. Now we wrap up with a collection of miscellaneous topics.


Image via Marvel

For example, they talked to us about the specifics of Black Panther’s superpowers in Civil War:

What is his power? Is it the costume? Is it that he’s been training like Jason Bourne?


JOE RUSSO: It’s a combination of everything. Certainly the costume gives him a level of protection and invulnerability because of the material that it’s made of.


ANTHONY RUSSO: Which is vibranium, for non-fans, and it’s the same material that Cap’s shield is made of.


JOE: It can absorb the energy, so it’s much harder to damage him as a character, and you can see that in the movie he can take a lot of punishment including bullets to the face. He is very well trained. He’s from one of the wealthiest countries on the planet, so there’s great infrastructure there; very technologically advanced country. So he’s been trained at the highest levels to fight, but he also has his own superpowers, which derive from the mythology of his nation. Those will be explored more in Black Panther, it’s clearly evident when he’s able to fight the Winter Soldier out of costume, and go toe-to-toe with him, that he is an enhanced individual.



Image via Marvel

I’m curious if they mean he’s “enhanced” because he’s a suit, or if he’s “enhanced” in the same way that Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver were enhanced, which was by the power of the Mind Stone. We still don’t know the location of two of the remaining Infinity Stones—the Time Stone and the Soul Stone—but since Kevin Feige hinted that Doctor Strange’s Eye of Agamotto is the Time Stone, perhaps the Wakandans are keeping the Soul Stone safeguarded.

The Russos also addressed the rumor of Gwyneth Paltrow having a deleted scene in the movie or if Pepper was ever going to be part of the plot [spoilers ahead for Civil War]:

ANTHONY: No, it was just one of those odd rumors. Look, we did consider very early on in the process we did consider the idea—here’s the thing: we really like the story point that Pepper had left Tony because we wanted Tony in a very vulnerable spot in this film.

JOE: The choices he makes in this movie are very complex, so we thought it was very important to have him off-balance as a character.


ANTHONY: Emotionally vulnerable, more emotionally vulnerable than we had ever seen him from the start of the story. So her having left him was always an important story point to us and very early on we may have explored whether or not we needed to tell that in a scene or not, but I think we decided pretty readily that we could handle it the way that we did in the film.

Watch the full interview above or check out the time index below for a full list of topics.


Image via Marvel

Joe & Anthony Russo

  • 0:07 – Why they were led to making Captain America 3 into Civil War.
  • 2:24 – If they had other titles than “Civil War”.
  • 3:20 – What exactly are Black Panther’s powers.
  • 4:45 – When they realized people were really going to spark to Black Panther.
  • 5:44 – If there was a character or hero they really wanted to put into the film but didn’t, and the challenges of getting in Iron Man, Spider-Man, and Black Panther.
  • 7:11 – Why they feel the movie is a “psychological thriller” and films they used as influences.
  • 8:33 – What Civil War has to say about today’s political landscape.
  • 10:53 – Squashing the rumor of Gwyneth Paltrow’s involvement in the movie.
  • 11:45 – Which was more grueling: filming the action or editing it?
  • 13:20 – Anything in the finished film they wish they could fix, and the last scene that was delivered from the VFX department.
  • 14:55 – The voice on Zemo’s voicemail.
  • 15:29 – If there was a debate over killing a character or characters in Civil War.
  • 16:29 – How will the airport scene, which was shot in IMAX, be presented on the Blu-ray.
  • 17:04 – How ending with Wakanda affects future movies.
  • 18:07 – The number of post-credits scenes.


Image via Marvel


Image via Marvel


Image via Marvel


Image via Marvel

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