Vaughan pointed out immediately that Nemo was the cat better at jumping, running, and generally being more physical. Tango, meanwhile, was hired for his mug. All the “heroic” cat close-ups were of Tango.
Filming with cats can apparently be perilous. Unlike dogs, cats can’t be trained in quite the same way, and it seems that Tango and Nemo couldn’t control some of their more aggressive cat instincts. For instance, one of them had to act on a set that was covered with a sandy floor. Thankfully, the cat didn’t poop in the sand, but he didn’t necessarily behave, either. Vaughan tells the story:
“The naughtiest thing one of them did happened when we were on one of the sets where the ground was quite gravelly. We were all ready to go and it was just a giant cat-litter box. He didn’t go to the toilet on set, but he came out and just started rolling around in it straight away.”
It also turned out to be a challenge working with Larson on set. The actress is aggressively allergic to cats, and wasn’t on set any of the days Captain Marvel had scenes. Any shots of Goose interacting with Captain Marvel were achieved with a stunt double or, in some cases, with Vaughan herself. Either she or a member of the cat-wrangling crew was put into the Captain Marvel costume and they stood in the background while Nemo or Tango got their close-up. That sounds like a game one can play with the new film: Scan “The Marvels” for shots of Goose with the superhero in the background, and it’s quite likely those shots don’t feature Brie Larson.