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Anthon Mackie in Captain America: Civil War

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The Marvel Cinematic Universe has become a behemoth presence in the film world over the last decade and change of filmmaking. And while the MCU has become a well-oiled machine of hit movies, it hasn't been without some missteps. The franchise has previously been criticized for largely featuring white men throughout its first two phases. And while Phase Three took some major steps forward in regards to inclusion, Anthony Mackie recently spoke to the need for diversity behind the camera. And now The Russo Brothers have responded to Mackie's concerns.

The Russo Brothers have seemingly completed their tenure in the MCU, after helming the last two Captain America movies as well as Infinity War and Endgame. All four of those movies featured Anthony Mackie's Sam Wilson/Falcon, and showed as he became a more important character in the shared universe. The Russo Brothers recently voiced their support of Mackie's diversity criticism, with Joe Russo telling MovieMaker:

I think we can always all do better at diversity, constantly in this business, and in every facet of every industry — so he’s not wrong at all. I think that we all have to work harder to keep endorsing and supporting diversity on both sides of the camera.

While the MCU has featured more people of color and women in Phase Three, Anthony Mackie's previous criticism of the franchise was regarding the lack of diversity behind the camera. He cited how Black Panther was the only movie to have black crew members, and also highlighted how Nate Moore is the only Black Marvel producer.

Marvel fans can re-watch Anthony Mackie's tenure in the MCU on Disney+. You can use this link to sign up for the new streaming service.

The conversations surrounding inclusion in the entertainment industry has been ongoing for years, with campaigns like #OscarsSoWhite showing the lack of diversity both in front and behind the camera. And while Anthony Mackie obviously loves his gig playing Sam Wilson, he's using his platform to further the discussion.

Later in their conversation with MovieMaker, Anthony Russo also voiced his support of Anthony Mackie, saying:

We have a ton of respect for Anthony Mackie. He is not only an amazing actor, but he’s an amazing person, and we’ve loved our collaboration with him.

Sam Wilson was first introduced in Captain America: The Winter Soldier, which was The Russo Brothers' first adventure in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. That particular sequel is known as one of the MCU's finest outings, and the co-directors eventually tackled massive ensemble projects like their Avengers movies. And while The Russos are seemingly retired from the shared universe, fans are eager to see what comes next for The Falcon.

Anthony Mackie will reprise his role in Disney+'s highly anticipated live-action series The Falcon and The Winter Soldier. Its expected that Sam Wilson will eventually rise as the new Captain America, after an elderly Steve Rogers left him his shield in Avengers: Endgame. There's no telling when he might return to the big screen, as there aren't any plans for a new Avengers movie thus far.

The Falcon and the Winter Soldier hasn't been given a release date, but it's currently expected some time in August. The MCU will return to theaters with Black Widow on November 6th. In the meantime, check out our 2020 release list to plan your next trip to the movies.