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The reason why Chris Evans turned down the Captain America role multiple times

Chris Evans is one of the most prominent Hollywood figures of the contemporary era, thanks in no small part to his role as Captain America in the ubiquitous Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). The character, who is Marvel’s embodiment of America’s core liberal values and propensity to protect the innocent, will likely go down as Evans’ definitive effort.

Although he is synonymous with the character of Captain America, it transpires that for a time, Evans was apprehensive about taking the role and even turned it down on numerous occasions as he believed that the job would change his life in a negative way. In 2018, he took to Twitter to make the big reveal, and it was one that shocked longtime fans of the MCU  as they’ve always seen him as the real-life embodiment of ‘The Captain’.

The admission actually came via the actor sharing candid stories of his lifelong battle with anxiety and how it led to him initially turning down the role. Adding to his decision was the fact that signing on entailed a ten-film commitment and that this would have put him in the public spotlight more than ever before once Marvel’s many different phases kicked into gear.

It was in a Twitter video that Evans revealed that he even went to therapy for his anxiety, but that he eventually realised, “Maybe the thing you’re most scared of is exactly the thing you should do.” He explained that it was “bumpy acclimation” when he first started filming as Captain America, as his previous performances in other superhero films, the Fantastic Four franchise, Scott Pilgrim vs. The World, and the cult title The Losers were spectres that weighed heavily on him.

Evans clarified that he was thankful for the decision he made to become Captain America, as this has allowed him to use his status for good, helping others in other ways outside of the happiness and entertainment that his performances in the MCU bring. The wealth that his Marvel performances have brought him has led to Evans being one of the most gregarious Hollywood A-listers, committing himself to a range of charitable causes such as visiting sick children in hospital and addressing online hate.

Referring back to his anxiety and the advice he’d give his younger self, Evans said: “It might seem oversimplified, but it’s profound, I’d say, ‘Shhhh.’ It’s been a big thing for me, ‘Shhhh.’ It’s so funny how noisy my brain is. Everyone’s brain is noisy, it makes thoughts. The problem is, in most of our lives, the root of suffering is following that brain noise and listening to that brain noise and actually identifying with it as if it’s who you are. That’s just the noise your brain makes, and more often than not, it probably doesn’t have much to say. (Saying ‘Shhhh,’) it’s gonna help you.”

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