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Joe Johnston Teases Winter Soldier in ‘Captain America 2′

Bucky Barnes could return in the sequel to this weekend's biggest new release.

With Captain America expected to tear up the box office this weekend, talk has already turned to the inevitable sequel. And no, we don't just mean The Avengers. But the unique chronology of the character, who finds himself frozen in World War II and waking up in the present day, might make Captain America 2 a tricky proposition. Do you go back to World War II, keep it in the present, or find a way to combine the two. These were the questions director Joe Johnston, who is contracted for a second Marvel Studios film, pondered for ScreenRant.

“Well ‘The Avengers’ will show him in present day, there’s no getting around that. But we talked about possibly doing a sequel, or the idea of doing a sequel back in the 40s. Basically make an adventure story that took place during the time that he was with his Avengers, you know. Because he was with them for three years and he could have done all kinds of things," Johnston said.

Adding, "But I think that what will determine the sequel is really what 'The Avengers' does. I haven’t seen it, I haven’t read the script, I don’t really know what the story is but it may be tough to go back to the 40s after seeing him in contemporary times — I’m not sure.”

So it's up in the air. But the real question the uber-fans want to know is who will be Cap's antagonist in the sequel. Johnston had some thoughts on that as well:

"I told the Marvel guys that there is a character that I’m really interested in called ‘The Winter Soldier’ and that if, ‘you guys decide to make that picture I would definitely be interested.’ It’s the ‘Bucky’ Barnes story.”

To be fair, Johnston was a little fuzzy on whether he wanted The Winter Soldier to be in Captain America 2 or his own, stand-alone film. But given Captain America's fairly limited rogues gallery, which consists primarily of The Red Skull and such Red Skull-ish villains as Baron Zemo, Baron Strucker and Baron Blood (sheesh, what does Marvel have against Barons, anyway?), this seems like a logical fit for the sequel.

The Winter Soldier, for those who don't know (we're deeply ashamed of you), is really Bucky Barnes, Captain America's best friend from World War II who was captured by the Russians and brainwashed into becoming their assassin. His reduced aging stems from the fact that he was cryogenically frozen between missions. In Captain America: The First Avenger he's played by Hot Tub Time Machine's Sebastian Stan.

CRAVE Online will return with more Captain America news as soon as we're done watching him punch out Hitler.