Anthony Mackie: I like where I am in this business right now, and whatever the business affords me, I’m going to take it in stride. There are a lot of drawbacks to celebrity. I have a lot of celebrity friends, and the way they choose to live their life dictates how big a celebrity they become, and it’s not the lifestyle I’m looking for. I grew up in the theater in New York, and you learn how to live on $425 a week. I don’t need much.
TR: What happened during the deleted Gangster Squad scene?
AM: It was very close to what happened in Colorado. We set up a sting on a guy, and he walks into a movie theater. We follow him and he comes from behind the screen, shooting at us. But not only is he shooting at us; he’s also mowing down people in the theater trying to get to us. As artists, we have a social responsibility to our audience, and it would’ve been a huge travesty to leave that scene in without being sympathetic to what people experienced in Colorado.
TR: As a cast member of director Kathryn Bigelow’s 2008 film, The Hurt Locker, what are your thoughts on her new film about capturing Osama bin Laden, Zero Dark Thirty?
AM: I think it was a travesty that she wasn’t nominated for best director by the Academy Awards. She took a story that we all knew and followed every day and made it compelling and interesting, while putting all of her actors in a place to give their best performances. If that’s not good directing, I don’t know what is. Her movie was definitely better than eight of the nine films nominated for best film.
TR: In the upcoming The Avengers 2 and Captain America sequel, you’ll play the Falcon. How are you preparing? One fan board said you’d have to bulk up and be sure to look exceptionally mean.
AM: That’s funny! That’s probably some fat dude in Connecticut saying, “You need to go to the gym!” I’ve actually become a gym rat again. But instead of getting bigger — because the Falcon was written as a man who was 6 foot 4 and 230 pounds; he was massive — mine is a different take on who he is, as opposed to being specific to the comic book, like all of the Marvel movies. You’ll definitely get your Falcon fix, and I will look amazing!
TR: Will we ever see you on a TV show like Scandal with your former Night Catches Us co-star Kerry Washington?