Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: You know that Marvel Studios is moving forward with a superhero movie when there is a bake-off of young talent for key roles. The movie is Captain America: The Winter Soldier, and directors Joe and Anthony Russo have a short list of five hot actresses for a significant new role.

I’m not sure of the character, but evidently it’s a love interest for Steve Rogers (Chris Evans). I’m told that Game Of ThronesEmelia Clarke, Downton Abbey‘s Jessica Brown Findlay, Warm Bodies‘ Teresa Palmer, Knight Of CupsImogen Poots and The Five Year Engagement‘s Alison Brie are testing for it. I’m also hearing that Scarlett Johansson’s Black Widow will be in the mix on this film. Marvel cleverly signs these actors on for as many as nine options, which gives them the latitude to cross-pollinate the films with multiple superheroes. At first this was annoyance to talent and their dealmakers — Marvel is known for being stingy — but The Avengers worked so well that it’s a career coup to be in the mix on Marvel movies because most of them turn out so well. And it certainly works for the audience.

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