Anthony Mackie


  1. Jeremy Renner, Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol, 2010.     The new IMF agent William Brandt was designd, everyone said, to  succeed Tom Cruise when he tired of being Ethan Hunt. Paramount checked out Mackie, Renner, Christopher Egan, Tom Hardy  and Chris Pine – already in the Paramount family due to the Star Trek franchise. “It’s great fun getting to run around with Tom,” said Renner, “and learn all these fantastic moves. It’s like 14-year-old boys’ dreams.” Renner was still round in Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation, 2014.  But so was Cruise!
  2. Don Cheadle, Iron Man 2, 2010.  “The surprise of a lifetime,” said Terrence Howard on losing his role of Colonel James Rhodes, Robert Downey-Iron Man’s best friend and future armor-clad hero War Machine. He was the first actor signed for the first film, paid the most but, reportedly, director Jon Favreau did not enjoy the experience.  Mackie had read for the part  and Cheadle said he was given two hours to decide about taking over Rhodey. “But that could be 12 years we’re talking about.”
  3. James Badge Dale, Iron Man 3, 2012.   Mackie read for Eric Savin, which went to Dale because Marvel maven Kevin Fiege had a lightbulb moment. He kept Mackie on ice to be Sam Wilson, aka Falcon, in Captain America: The Winter Soldier, 2014. Plus that films’ video short Steve Rogers’ Notebook, Avengers: Age of Ultrton, Ant Man, Captain  America: Civil War, the Falcon & Winter Soldier series, 2019, and on and on. Once  in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, difficult to get out. Like the Mafia.
  4. Damon Wayans Jr, Big Hero 6, 2014. “We didn’t set out to be superheroes. But sometimes life doesn’t go the way you planned.“  Kevin Hart, Anthony Mackie, Craig Robinson, Will Smith were in the mix for voicing Wasabiin Disney’s first Marvel, winning the best animation Oscar. It unfurls in 2023  (we all know  that computer battery number, right?) in San Fransokyo (‘Frisco rebuilt by the Japanese after an earthquake) and deals with a super-troupe  behind the titular collective name… that nobody ever says.  Wayans made his screen debut at age 11 in another superhero piece, Blankman, 1993, starring his father. 
  5. Chadwick Boseman, Black Panther, 2017.   Spider-Man turned  up in the third Cap Am movie as a teaser  for his welcome-back-home-to-Marvel reboot. Idem for T’Challa/Black Panther in  Captain America: Civil War, 2015,  before this ground-breaking solo flight.  The finalists included four Brits: Akinnuoye-Agbaje (Algrim/Kurse in Thor: The Dark World), John Boyega (Finn in the 21st Century Star Wars), Noel Clarke (from Star Trek Into Darkness), Chiwetel Ejiofor (Mordo in Doctor Strange)…  Benin’s Djimon Hounsou (Korath in Guardians of the Galaxy, Captain Marvel)… four Americans: Boseman (best known for his James Brown in Get On Up, 2013), Chad L Coleman (from The Wire and Arrow), Anthony Mackie (Sam Wilson/Falcon in films and TV) and Wesley Snipes, from way back in 1990, when the title was muddled with the 60s’ black activists. In fact, the comic came out two months before the group in 1965. Finally, Snipes was too old and supported Boseman’s take “1,000%.” Grossing $1bn, the actual Black Panther  film was #1 in the US for five weeks, until dethroned by Pacific Rim: Uprising starring… Boyega!
  6. Isiah Mustafa, It Chapter Two, 2018.  Veterans like Don Cheadle and Taye Diggs were listed, of course. But the adult Mike Hanlon was a job for one of the new generation. Mustafa, from Shadowhunters, survived suchheady opposition as Chadwick Boseman, Donald Glover, Michael B Jordan, Anthony Mackie and Craig Robinson.  Idris Elba was also keen, after his Stephen King film, The Dark Tower, 2016. This was the 262nd of King’s staggering 313 screen credits … and his second biggest hit! The first?  It, 2016, of course. (King Kameo: Pawnbroker).

 Birth year: Death year: Other name: Casting Calls:  6