Chris Evans is Captain America. It's a dream role for generations of kids weaned on the ultra-patriotic super soldier -- and one he initially refused to take. Again and again.
In this month's GQ cover story, which hits newsstands June 21st, Evans talks about his role in the upcoming Marvel big screen epic, saying that he wanted to no part of it at first, before introspection took over.
"I said no a bunch, and every time I said no, I woke up the next morning so happy and content," he reveals. "I kept saying no; they kept coming back. And eventually I was like, 'You know what? This is your biggest fear — this is exactly what you have to do.'"
Now that he's counting down the days to its July release, the massive marketing campaign and expectations are a whole other set of problems for him.
"The problem is, if the movie's bad, that's one set of problems. If the movie's great, here come the sequels, here come the f*ckin'…" he says, before catching his complaints -- no need to sound petty, he insists.
That being said, he has felt the sting of perception -- even if it was good for his career.
When he got the role of a smarmy Hollywood villain in "Scott Pilgrim vs. The World," he learned a hard truth about himself.
"The character's supposed to be this horrible actor and a douchebag, and I get the job and so many people were like, 'You're perfect, you're gonna crush it!'" he joked. "I was like, So I got this role as an a*shole actor, and you guys think I nailed it? That I'm a natural and that nobody in town can do it better?"
Evans' frame fluctuates wildly in the film, as he goes from a 5'7, 120 pound kid to a massive, sci-fi creation of a man. But while the special effects made him smaller, the muscles you see on screen are all him. It's something he spoke about with USA Weekend in April.
"They went back and forth on the type of technology they were going to use. Initially, they were just going to do body shrinking, and then they thought, 'Well, maybe we can get another skinny actor and put Chris' head on it,' and I really, really was against that," Evans said. "I said to Joe [Johnston, director], "Look, I know we want this to look good and this effect to not be distracting from the film, but it has to be my performance. I don't want to share this. Your body is a huge piece of the acting puzzle, and I don't want to have somebody else's body tell the story that I'm trying to tell.' So they did some tweaking and they did a bunch of tests and we went back to the initial plan to shrink my body."
It may have been impossible, though, to come off poorly in the interview, given the relationship he fostered with the article's writer; instead of a profile of Evans' career or adjustment to coming megastardom, much of it reads a dating log.
"We were heading our separate ways for dinner first. I said I was going to call a cab, but Chris laughed and insisted on his driver taking me back to my hotel. In the vast backseat, Chris was even more fliirtatious than before, touching my arm and my knee," the author, Edith Zimmerman, writes. "At this point, which was a…number of drinks in, it was easy to forget that it really was an interview, and I'd be lying if I said it didn't cross my mind that something might happen (and that we'd go to the Oscars and get married and have babies forever until we died?). But there was always the question of how much of it was truly Chris Evans, and whom I should pretend to be in response."
Whether it was an actor looking for good PR or more, it's hard to say. But if "Captain America" does as expected at the box office, Evans will have all the good press he can handle. Even if he doesn't want the attention.
For more, click over to GQ.WATCH: