By Stephen Ippolito | July 6th, 2020
In February, I wrote an article about how I thought Florence Pugh’s character Yelena Belova, would take over for Scarlett Johansson as the MCU’s new Black Widow. I wasn’t the only one that thought this, in fact, a lot of people did. The fact that the upcoming Black Widow film would be Johansson’s last appearance as Natasha Romanova and Belova’s history in Marvel Comics it just seemed obvious. According to the film’s director, it’s been confirmed that this is what indeed happens.
In an interview with Empire, director Cate Shortland says that the upcoming Phase 4 opener will set up Belova as the new Black Widow.
“[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.”
Since Black Widow’s trailer was released, speculation began that since Romanova was seen wearing Belova’s vest in Avengers: Infinity War, it was presumed that she dies in the upcoming film. Unless Shortland is just saying this to trick everyone than this theory seems to be debunked.
It will be interesting to see if Florence Pugh will be in Avengers films going forward or if she will just have a solo film or a series on Disney+. It will also be interesting to see if her getting the “baton” will be a mid or post-credit scene in Black Widow.
In my piece in February, I thought it would be cool if there was a scene that flashes forward to the events of Tony Stark’s funereal in Avengers: Endgame. In it, we find out that Pugh’s character was watching the ceremony from a distance. Maybe we eventually see her interact with someone, possibly Hawkeye or Bruce Banner. Until November, will just have to wait and see how it all plays out.