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Toby Jones to return as villain Arnim Zola in Captain America: The Winter Soldier

01.21.2013

British actor Toby Jones, who recently killed it in HBO's THE GIRL, has confirmed his return to the Marvel Universe, where he'll reprise his role as the villainous scientist Arnim Zola, the accomplice of the Red Skull who will likely play a large role in some flashback sequences as the man responsible for "brainwashing" Bucky Barnes/The Winter Soldier (portrayed once again by Sebastian Stan). 

When we last saw Jones as Zola in CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE FIRST AVENGER, he had been captured by the Allied Forces and was being interrogated by Tommy Lee Jones' Col. Chester Phillips.  No other details have been revealed, but it was suggested in the first Captain America film that Bucky had been brainwashed while at the facility that he was rescued from.  Although vastly different from the comics lineage, using Zola as the chief "brainwasher" will likely be the direction that new helmers Anthony and Joe Russo will take with the character, but that's pure speculation on my part. Zola is well-known in the Marvel Universe as being the cybernetic half-man/half-robot with the TV screen face, an invention which has allowed Zola to live well past his years.

The Winter Soldier is currently my favorite Marvel character, a deeply flawed hero that toe's the line in terms of being a "good" guy.  My fingers are crossed in hopes that his transition to the big screen will be one that pays homage to his origins and capitalizes on all the aspects that make him such a great character and nemesis/teammate to Steve Rogers (again played by Chris Evans).  

CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE WINTER SOLDIER starts filming in April with the current cast of Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson, Anthony Mackie, Sebastian Stan, Frank Grillo, Cobie Smulders, Samuel L. Jackson, and Toby Jones with a release date set for April 4, 2014.

Zola is featured heavily in the current run on Captain America, with the latest issue leaving a rather unique "partnership" plot twist between Zola and Steve Rogers...

Extra Tidbit: The Winter Soldier is one of the best Captain America stories ever told. I highly recommend picking up the trade at your local comic shop or online and giving it a read. Great stuff.

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