The actor made famous by a superhero film has led a long and brilliant career that started on stage, and all through these years, he has managed to keep his personal life out of the spotlight.
41-year-old actor Anthony Mackie had his breakthrough role in 2014 when he became mainstream famous by playing Sam Wilson/ Falcon in the Marvel cinematic universe, but there is quite a lot more to him.
He started his professional career as a Broadway actor after graduating from the prestigious Julliard School, and he once had to choose between pursuing his acting dreams and becoming a professional football player.
Mackie made his debut on the big screen in the 2002 film "8 Mile," starring rapper Eminem. He starred in Kathryn Bigelow's celebrated "The Hurt Locker" (2008) and played rapper Tupac Shakur on "Notorious" (2009) years before becoming a huge star.
But after all is said and done, it is Anthony's four children he shares with his once-school sweetheart and former wife, 41-year-old Sheletta Chapital Mackie, are the only ones from whom he actually wants approval.
HOW THEY MET
"So I walk in, and I looked, and I see this little girl with these ratty pigtails and skinny legs, and I was like, 'Wow!'" Anthony recalls about meeting Sheletta in grade school.
Like Anthony, Sheletta was only seven years old at the time, but she also felt drawn to him, and the two became inseparable for decades. As Anthony told Queen Latifah in 2014, they dated on and off from that time until their marriage in 2014.
Even though Anthony became a recognizable big-screen star in 2012 when he first portrayed the role of Sam Wilson/Falcon in "Captain America: The Winter Soldier" (part of the "Avengers" film franchise), the press only learned about Sheletta in the months leading to the couple's secret wedding.
Anthony and Sheletta were both 28 and had not seen each other for a while when the two reconnected after running into each other at a rock concert.
"She put her number in my phone, and it's been dope ever since," the actor shared with James Corden in 2015.
MARRYING IN SECRET
Anthony and Sheletta managed to keep their relationship private because of their extreme discretion. But Anthony probably knew that hiding a relationship after marriage wasn't possible in the long run, so he prepared the public by mentioning his longtime girlfriend on live television.
When Latifah asked Anthony in an April 2014 episode of her namesake talk show whether there was a "Mrs. Mackie," Anthony answered affirmatively, although referring to Sheletta only as his "Falconette."
As the news outlet learned, the couple managed to avoid media attention by getting married in Punta Cana, the Dominican Republic, where they also spent their honeymoon (Mackie was filming "Our Brand Is Crisis" there at the time).
"It was low-key and super relaxed. They had a welcome dinner. We golfed and drank," one of the guests at the private celebration told Page Six.
Although very little is known about Anthony and Sheletta's children, given the former couple's private nature, we know that they share four children.
Their firstborn, a boy, was born in 2009, years before the longtime boyfriend-girlfriend went on to marry.
In November 2015, Anthony and Sheletta announced that they had recently given birth to their third child. While it wasn't the first time, Anthony admitted that the addition changed his perspective on many aspects.
"It just changes your entire perspective on the world. Even traveling is an issue now — I've got to buy five tickets!" Anthony half-joked in a Los Angeles Times interview.
As TMZ reported in 2019, Anthony and Sheletta had a total of four children before their divorce.
A QUIET DIVORCE
Just as quietly as they married four years earlier, Anthony and Sheletta filed for divorce in 2017, finalizing the legal process to officially end their marriage the following year.
TMZ only obtained the exclusive news of the split by May 2019. As the news outlet reported at the time, the separation happened on friendly terms, and the reason behind their decision remains unknown to the public.
As TMZ also noted, Sheletta wasn't seen with her former husband at the "Avengers: Endgame" premiere early in 2019, contrary to what had happened at previous red carpet events.