When a movie's in development, especially a superhero flick, there's a lot of concept art that doesn't make the final cut, or changes in the process. As such, Ryan Meinerding, the head of visual development at Marvel Studios, has elaborated on how this process actually takes place in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, singling out Chris Evans' Captain America and Paul Bettany's Vision as prime examples.
In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Meinerding said his team is always challenged to bridge the gap between the original comics and “the story world that the filmmakers are trying to create.” In terms of Cap, he referenced making Steve Rogers look much more like a soldier in Captain America: The First Avenger when he went to rescue Bucky Barnes from HYDRA.
In the film, Rogers donned a thick leather jacket with padded khaki pants, but in Meinerding's unused concept art, Cap looked more streamlined with a blue jacket. “I think the reason why that blue coat version was not chosen was he didn’t feel as much like a soldier in that costume,” he said. “He still felt like he was a little bit more showy.”
As for Vision, who debuted in Avengers: Age of Ultron, Meinerding revealed a very different look for the android than the classic version similar to the comics, though it does bear some similarities to the hero's Avengers West Coast look. The artwork looked more robotic with the Avenger having a gold faceplate and gray body. “[Director] Joss [Whedon] really wanted Vision to stay human-colored,” Meinerding explained. “He really wanted him to look like Paul Bettany with the bit of styling on him, and when we did versions of that, it seemed hard to make that look cool and interesting."
When it comes to nailing the look of these characters, Meinerding also added, “In my opinion, it’s much, much more difficult to find the first version of the character -- more or less because the tone of those movies are still being worked out. We have to do a bunch of versions just to get in the ballpark of what the visuals are gonna be and what the tone of the movie is gonna be.”
Both characters will next be seen in Avengers: Infinity War. Directed by Joe and Anthony Russo, it stars Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo, Jeremy Renner, Scarlett Johansson, Anthony Mackie, Paul Rudd, Elizabeth Olsen, Tom Holland, Benedict Cumberbatch, Chadwick Boseman, Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Bradley Cooper, Vin Diesel, Tom Hiddleston, and Josh Brolin. The film arrives April 27.