Marvel's Black Widow finally hits theaters this weekend, and it has been a long road for the movie. Thanks to the coronavirus pandemic, the origin story of Natasha Romanoff has been sitting on the shelf for a year, waiting to be released into the wild. Once fans sit in their seats though, they will want to savor every moment because it will be the last time they see Scarlett Johansson as the super spy.
"I have no plans to return as Natasha," Johansson, 36, told Fatherly. "I feel really satisfied with this film. It feels like a great way to go out for this chapter of my Marvel identity. I would love to be able to continue to collaborate with Marvel in other ways because I think there's just an incredible wealth of stories there. Re-imagining this genre is something that I find very interesting. I think there's a lot of opportunities to tell these stories in different ways than audiences have come to expect."
Black Widow is set just after Captain America: Civil War (2016) and shows how Natasha's past keeps coming to bite her present. It is also set before Avengers: Infinity War (2018) and Avengers: Endgame (2019), the latter of which showed Natasha sacrifice herself. Johansson has been playing Natasha since 2010 when the character made her MCU debut in Iron Man 2. She also appeared in The Avengers (2012), Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014), Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015), Civil War, and Captain Marvel (2019).
The character has evolved greatly over time, to the point that Johansson can see how Black Widow can be a role model for the younger members of the audience. "One of her most admirable attributes is that she's not afraid to admit when she's wrong," Johansson told Fatherly. "She takes responsibility for things, particularly in this film. She's really coming to terms with her past in a way that is very, very mindful, very thoughtful, and considerate, and mindful. And I think she's someone who has a lot of respect for other people. She has a lot of integrity as a person, and I think that makes her a great role model for children and certainly for young girls."
Black Widow is the first film in MCU's Phase 4, which also includes the Disney+ series WandaVision, Falcon and the Winter Soldier, and Loki. It was scheduled to hit theaters in May 2020 but was postponed several times during the coronavirus pandemic. It hits theaters on Friday, with preview screenings Thursday night. It will also be available to stream on Disney+ with $30 Premiere Access. The film was directed by Cate Shortland and written by Eric Pearson.