A quick recap… Anthony Mackie has been confirmed to star as Falcon, alongside Chris Evans, in the sequel to Captain America: The First Avenger (to be titled Winter Soldier), which is being directed by Joe and Anthony Russo.

Stan Lee introduced Falcon in Captain America #117 (September 1969),calling him "the first African American superhero."

The character, Sam Wilson, is Harlem-based and had many street adventures with Cap in the 1970s comics, when he served as his partner. In current comics, Falcon is a key player in many of Cap's espionage adventures.

His superhero abilities include: an empathic link with his pet falcon, has the ability to see through the eyes of nearby birds, can fly, is skilled in martial artist, and is a gymnast.

Winter Soldier will center heavily on the apparent resurrection of Bucky Barnes, played in Captain America: The First Avenger by Sebastian Stan.

As MTV notes:

In the comics, Bucky resurfaces in the form of a brainwashed Russian assassin known as the Winter Soldier, and it's up to his old partner and friend Steve Rogers to bring him back to the side of the angels. Exactly how faithful the Marvel Studios film plans to stick to that source material remains to be seen, but actor Chris Evans insists that the seeds for "Winter Soldier" were planted long ago.

And how involved will Falcon be in the story? That remains to be seen.

But Mackie is definitely excited about the opportunity to play Falcon, and as noted in an interiew he did with over the weekend, he's taking it all very seriously, because "he considers The Falcon to be an iconic role as Marvel's first real African-American superhero."

Mackie told that he starts his training soon (I assume that means physical training primarily), and that he's diving into a collection of the Captain America and the Falcon comics from the 1970s, to assist him in getting to know the character he's going to play on screen.

Mackie said he hadn't read the script yet, so he couldn't say how much of Falcon's backstory will be included in the film, adding that…

It makes me feel all the work I've done has been paying off. I have a son, nephews and nieces, and I love the idea that they can dress up as the Falcon on Halloween. They now have someone they can idolize. That's a huge honor for me.

Production on Captain America: Winter Soldier begins in March 2013 for a April 4, 2014 release date.