From Oscar ‘hurt’ to Marvel hunt

Anthony Mackie approached Marvel Studios for a role after he was snubbed of an Oscar nomination for The Hurt Locker

By PTI
  • Published 11.07.19, 6:33 PM
  • Updated 11.07.19, 6:33 PM
  • a min read
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Anthony Mackie (The Telegraph)

Actor Anthony Mackie says he decided to approach Marvel Studios for a role in its superhero films after he was snubbed of an Oscar nomination for The Hurt Locker.

Directed by Kathryn Bigelow, the 2008 war drama was a major critical success for the 40-year-old actor, who prior to that played small roles in films such as Clint Eastwood’s Million Dollar Baby, Half Nelson and Eagle Eye. But despite the critical acclaim for his performance, Mackie — who played Sergeant J. T. Sanborn in the film — was passed over for an Academy Award nomination, while the film eventually won six awards out of the nine nods it received.

“I put everything in that movie. That little f***er matters... But when that happened with Hurt Locker, it hurt. I had to take a year off,” Mackie told Men’s Health.

After the break, which he called was “very therapeutic”, Mackie decided to approach Marvel Studios. “My line was ‘Yo, I’m the black dude from The Hurt Locker. I would love to work with you guys’,” the actor — who went to play Sam Wilson/Falcon in the Marvel Cinematic Universe — recalled.

First, Mackie auditioned for Mandarin in Iron Man 3, a part which went to Ben Kingsley but his screen test impressed director Joe Russo and producer Nate Moore, who were looking for an actor to play Sam in Captain America: The Winter Soldier.

Mackie said he loved the character since his childhood, particularly because he did not have the “black” title. Growing up, I’d always loved Falcon, because he was a comic-book hero who was black who didn’t have ‘Black’ in the title. He stood on his morals. He stood on who he was,” he said.