UPDATED September 9, 2008:To everyone who disbelieved this story, Ain't It Cool News has spoken to people at Marvel who have denied that Will Smith has been offered the role of Captain America, or in fact any role at all in The First Avenger: Captain America. The story as originally written continues below.
One of the more unlikely casting rumors for The First Avenger: Captain America has now reared it's head, with the suggestion that Will Smith will be taking on the role of the Star-Spangled Avenger. Derek Luke, while speaking to MTV about his role in Miracle at St. Anna, said that Marvel had offered the role to Smith.
Luke added the casting rumor "just shows you how times have changed."
Now, while it's true that Marvel hasn't been afraid of reinventing its' characters as time goes by, this one sounds a bit unlikely to us. It worked when Mark Millar changed Nick Fury of S.H.I.E.L.D. from David Hasselhoff into Samuel L. Jackson in the pages of The Ultimates, a change that was carried over into this summer's Iron Man. But would Marvel really take the chance of so drastically changing Captain America?
Now, while it doesn't seem likely to us that Smith will be taking the role of Steve Rogers, it may still be possible that Smith could make an appearance in the film as A Captain America. Marvel created a comic titled Truth: Red, White and Black, written by Robert Morales and illustrated by Kyle Baker. In that comic, before Steve Rogers received the Super-Soldier treatment, the process was first tested on a number of African-American volunteers. One of those volunteers, Isaiah Bradley, performed several missions as the first Captain America.
So, it's possible that if there is any truth to Luke's statement, Smith may be making an appearance in the film as Bradley, while another actor takes the role of Steve Rogers.
In the comics, Captain America is actually Steve Rogers, a patriotic young man during the days of World War II who was rejected by the army for being physically unfit. Officials were so impressed with the young man's enthusiasm that they enlisted him in a top-secret Super Soldier program to transform him into the pinnacle of human fitness. Transformed, Captain America fought in the War and was then put into suspended animation until the modern day. Re-awakened in a strange new world, Cap still fights for truth and justice and the American way as the leader of the Avengers. Expect to see The First Avenger: Captain America battle to screens in the summer of 2011.