‘Black Widow’ film grooms Florence Pugh to take over

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In an exclusive interview with Empire, director of the upcoming Black Widow film Cate Shortland confirms that this won’t be the last time we see a version of the titular character.

Black Widow will be the first movie in Phase 4 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Since we know that Black Widow dies in Avengers: Endgame, the film fills in some of the gaps from the mysterious life of Scarlett Johansson’s character Natasha Romanoff/Black Widow. At the same time it sets us up for a leadership addition in the “new Avengers” team. That being said, the prequel movie takes place between the events of Captain America: Civil War and Avengers: Infinity War, when Natasha goes home to Russia and reconnects with her “family”. They include David Harbour as Red Guardian, Rachel Weiss as Melina Vostokoff, and Florence Pugh as Yelena Belova.

“[Kevin Feige] realised that the audience would expect an origin story so, of course, we went in the opposite direction,” Shortland tells Empire. “And we didn’t know how great Florence Pugh would be. We knew she would be great, but we didn’t know how great. Scarlett is so gracious, like, ‘Oh, I’m handing her the baton.’ So it’s going to propel another female storyline.”

Pugh’s character Yelena, is set up to join the new team of Avengers including Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie), Peter Parker (Tom Holland), Doctor Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) and Black Panther (Chadwick Boseman).

Black Widow was originally set to hit theaters May 20th, 2020. It has since been pushed back to November 6th, 2020, and the rest of the MCU Phase 4 movies will shuffle back its release dates as well.

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