What does Captain America do when he’s not flying around saving the world?
Well, he flies around, only without the saving the world part. Chris Evans, well-known for his role as Captain America in the Avengers movie franchise set to continue later this year, made the daring decision to jump from an airplane for Esquire Magazine’s April issue.
Being a celebrity, however, doesn’t mean he can do whatever he wants, whenever he wants. Thanks to his six film contract with Marvel Studios, Evans had to obtain permission before suiting up for a Tandem Skydive with Skydive Perris in Orange County near Los Angeles, California.
The cape-dawning superstar joked about the added step, saying, “They give you all these crazy insurance policies, but even if I die, what are they going to do? Sue my family? They’d probably cast some new guy at a cheaper price and save some money.”
Despite having made the leap once before with fellow A-lister and then girlfriend, Jessica Biel, Evans still admitted to some fear the night before the jump. “I started exploring the sensation of ‘What if the chute doesn’t open?’ Those last minutes where you know. You’re not gonna pass out; you’re gonna be wide awake. So what? Do I close my eyes? Hopefully, it would be quick. Lights out. I f–king hope it would be quick. And then I was like: If you’re gonna do it, let’s just pretend there is no way this is going to go wrong. Just really embrace it and jump out of that plane with gusto.”
Pretending nothing will go wrong is quite the opposite of what most would do, and Evans attributes this ability to his mindfulness training to be present in the moment. Self-claimed to Maximillian Potter, the original reporter of the story, one of Evan’s true fears in life is what he’s missing out on while he’s putting his energy elsewhere. Thanks to his readings of Michael A. Singer’s The Surrender Experiment, Evans is learning to enjoy the present. “It’s about the basic notion that we are only in a good mood when things are going our way. The truth is, life is going to unfold as it’s going to unfold regardless of your input. If you are an active participant in that awareness, life kind of washes over you, good or bad.”
And that’s exactly what he did when jumping from 12,500, let go of it all as the 120 mph air rushed over him.
He let go of everything, including worry, to take on his favorite part of skydiving – jumping out. “Our conscious minds are very spread out. We worry about the past. We worry about the future. We label. And all of that stuff just makes us very separate. What I’m trying to do is just quiet it down. Put that brain down from time to time and hope those periods of quiet and stillness get longer. When you do that, what rises from the mist is a kind of surrendering. You’re more connected as opposed to being separate.”
As one would hope, or maybe even expect, the Boston native is also a known family man. Chris has close bonds with his parents, two sisters, and younger brother, and he wouldn’t have it any other way. “In my own life, I have a deep connection with my family and the value of those bonds. I’ve always loved stories about people who put their families before themselves. It’s such a noble endeavor. You can’t choose your family, as opposed to friends. Especially in L.A. You really get to see how friendships are put to the test; it stirs everyone’s egos. And If something goes south with a friend, you have the option to say we’re not friends anymore. Your family—that’s your family. Trying to make that system work and trying to make it not just functional but actually enjoyable is a really challenging endeavor, and that’s certainly how it is with my family.”
With shooting for Avengers: Infinity War, starting up in May, however, Evan’s family, friends, and agent can rest assured he won’t be jumping out of a plane again…at least for a while.