The film did not get a US theatrical release when first made in 1990, but was released internationally. It finally received a limited theatrical release in the United States in July 2011 (to promote the reboot Captain America: The First Avenger (2011)), when director Albert Pyun toured the country with his director's cut.
Before this movie was introduced, Marvel Comics head honcho Stan Lee insisted that it was good. He wrote, "Director Albert Pyun did it so well and so excitingly that everyone in the audience [at the screening] kept clamoring for more," to account for the film being scheduled for a re-shoot.
Before Steve Rogers' transformation, one character is addressed as "Senator Kirby". Jack Kirby (also known as King Kirby) co-created Captain America, as well as many other well-known Marvel characters.
The producers considered getting two different actors for the role of Captain America--one for the role of the weak pre-superhero Steve Rogers and another for the superhero Captain America--but decided to get an actor who could play both roles instead.
Advertisements in Variety magazine announcing the movie's production incorrectly credited the character as being "created by Stan Lee". This was corrected to credit Jack Kirby and Joe Simon in the actual movie.
According to the "Spokesman" review on February 19, 1986, Marlon Brando was scheduled to appear in the film as the Red Skull when Michael Winner was to be director, but Winnr admitted that he didn't talk to Brando about the project.
In an online interview with the Planet Origo website, director Albert Pyun talked about his experience with this film. He said that it was shelved for two years because "it wasn't the movie the studio wanted, plus the producing studio was undergoing financial issues." He also said the most challenging part about shooting the film was that they lacked proper funding. Pyun recalled, "It's pretty difficult to make a film when there were times we actually had no money in the bank."
The science fiction serial character Buck Rogers is an influence behind the character of Captain America. Captain America's real name is Steve Rogers and like Buck Rogers, he is frozen in suspended animation and is revived decades later, unlike Buck Rogers, whom was frozen in suspended animation for centuries.
The trivia item below may give away important plot points.
Matt Salinger, who plays the titular superhero, is the son of novelist J.D. Salinger. J.D. Salinger wrote "Catcher in the Rye," which has been mythologized as a novel obsessed over by several assassins who killed major political figures. In the film, the Red Skull is responsible for killing several political figures due to Cap failing to take him out in the 1940s. In reality, a few of these political figures were killed by assassins who owned "Catcher in the Rye."