It’s been about nine months since we first found out that Anthony Mackie would be joining ‘Captain America: The Winter Soldier’ as Steve Rogers’ wingman, Sam Wilson AKA Falcon. Now, production on the film started about a week ago, so we should be seeing the star of ‘The Hurt Locker’ and ‘Gangster Squad’ suit up sometime soon. But before that happens, the actor recently divulged some information as to how he landed the role.

During an interview with Collider for his latest film ‘Pain & Gain’ with Mark Wahlberg and The Rock, Mackie talked a bit about Captain America’s next film and his place in all of it. First, he started with how he came to join the cast in the first place:

“I was offered ‘Captain America’. It was just a straight offer. I met with the directors and the producers and talked to them and we were kind of on the same page about what it is we thought the character could be and they really were interested in my input and my ideas. And after that, they… I think we were both… we both realized at that meeting that we were both on board to do the movie.”

Next, he talks about how this Marvel movie will open the doors to more opportunities in film for him:

“I mean, you know, you do the Marvel movies to garner you the ability to do the movies that you really want to do – the other movies, the smaller movies, you know. So it depends on what exactly you want to do. You know, doing a movie like ‘Captain America’ – that puts your name in the mouth of everyone in this country and in the living room of everybody so, you know, once that comes out then you can go to the studio and tell them the kind of movie you really want to do.”

Finally, since filming has begun on ‘Captain America: The Winter Soldier’, Mackie revealed that he’ll be joining the crew in Cleveland, OH, as well as shooting some scenes in Manhattan Beach, CA. But before he could, he had to slim down after his role in ‘Pain & Gain’ because the studio mentioned that they wanted Falcon to be a bit smaller than superheroes of the past:

“Well, it’s more so a cardio thing now. I mean, you know, if you’re a super hero… I didn’t want to get too bulky. You know there’s a lot of limitations to how big I was for ‘Pain and Gain’, whereas with this I just want to be fit, you know. I just want to be in shape to where I can go in and do all the stunts and all the things I feel like I would need to do to bring this character to life. So, it all depends. I met with the studio very early on and I told them I was going to throw on some weight and get bigger and they said, ‘No, no, no, no don’t do that. Stay a smaller weight and we’ll figure out something character-wise.’ So, you know, that’s kind of what it turned into.”

Since Sam Wilson is supposed to take flight, I could see why he’d be a slimmer guy. I assume that he’d be more aerodynamic that way. Either way, it’s interesting to get a little peek into what Marvel demands of their actors physically when they’re preparing for their roles as these iconic comic book characters. And while I’m sold on how Mackie describes Falcon, I’m not sure if I’m totally sold on the concept art for the character yet. I mean, I know he’s supposed to be stealthy, but Hawkeye is still stealthy while having a little bit of color in his suit. Hopefully the costume designers throw in some of Falcon’s trademark red in there before the final product makes it to the screen so that he doesn’t look like Blade with wings.

‘Captain America: The Winter Soldier’ starring Chris Evans, Sebastian Stan, Anthony Mackie, Frank Grillo, Toby Jones, Scarlett Johansson, Samuel L. Jackson, Cobie Smulders, and Emily VanCamp is scheduled to land in theaters on April 4, 2014.