Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Here is a fun Marvel scoop. I’m hearing that Robert Redford is in discussions to join the cast of Marvel’s Captain America: The Winter Soldier, the sequel that brings Chris Evans back as the shield-carrying superhero. Redford is in talks to play a senior leadership role in S.H.I.E.L.D., the superhero collective run by Samuel L. Jackson’s Nick Fury character. Joe and Anthony Russo are directing the film from a script by Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely, whose Marvel script credits include Captain America: The First Avenger and the upcoming Thor: The Dark World. The sequel will be released by Disney on April 4, 2014.

In between running his Sundance empire, Redford most recently starred in All Is Lost, the J.C. Chandor-scripted and directed survival tale. While Marvel was predictably mum as Kevin Feige’s unit always is on casting matters, Marvel characters have a tendency to show up in other superhero movies, and I believe that is likely to be on the menu for Redford. It will be somewhat ironic for the patriarch of independent cinema to become a regular in some of Hollywood’s biggest studio blockbusters. Redford’s repped by WME.

Redford directed and stars in The Company You Keep, which Sony Pictures Classics releases April 5, with Shia La Beouf, Stanley Tucci, Nick Nolte, Susan Sarandon, Julie Christie, Sam Elliott, Brit Marling and Chris Cooper starring.