Which Avengers Would Appear In Marvel’s ‘Black Widow’ Prequel?
Now that Scarlett Johansson is very likely shooting the Black Widow standalone movie, two questions arise: Will this movie look forward or backward? And will any of the other Avengers join her?
The movie is very likely to be a prequel unless Marvel pulls out time travel or other mystical magic. SPOILER: Natasha gave her life in Avengers: Endgame so that the team could retrieve the soul stone — the same one that led to Gamora’s death in Infinity War.
So will her Marvel Cinematic Universe friends join her? We’re guessing no. The movie will almost certainly look back at the character’s origins, which have not been shown before, and the other Avengers simply aren’t part of that story. But we could be wrong. Marvel has surprised us before.
Why ‘Black Widow’ will most likely be a solo movie
Unlike most of the other Avengers, Black Widow doesn’t have some kind of supernatural or high-tech origin: Iron Man had all his Tony Stark Toys, Captain America had his super serum, and the Hulk had his gamma accident, and Thor is nothing less than a god.
The only one of the team from the 2012 Avengers who is similar to Natasha is Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner), who is also a skilled fighter who doesn’t rely on superpowers and who usually eschews high-tech weapons. That’s why, if any Avenger joins her in the new movie, it will most likely be Clint. Not only are they similar stylistically, but Clint was with her when she died in Endgame. So even if they improbably go the sequel route, Hawkeye would be her most likely partner.
If the solo movie does go the sequel route, that would involve resurrection, and that kind of otherworldly event would be at odds with Black Widow’s gritty, down to earth style. With her tortured background as a reformed Russian spy/assassin, Natasha has not been prone to sharing details of her past. That’s why a movie that reveals her origins has the most potential, and why the other Avengers are not likely to part of her movie.
How the other Avengers could appear
We can see one way the MCU would pull off a Black Widow sequel. The trailer for July’s Spider-Man: Far from Home specifically mentions multi-verses, like the kind Sony deployed so successfully in Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, which won an Oscar for the Best Animated Feature. That is one way to bring Natasha back without involving the far-out solutions that Doctor Strange and friends would dream up.
On the other hand, we have never truly seen Natasha on her own. Whenever we’ve seen her, she’s always been mixing it up with her fellow Avengers or helping out other team members in their solo movies. The MCU introduced the character in Iron Man 2, and after The Avengers, she helped Steve Rogers in Captain: America: Winter Soldier, one of the most earthbound of all the MCU movies.
One of the reasons that film worked so well is that it played like a paranoid conspiracy thriller from the 70s, even to the point of casting Robert Redford, a veteran of that genre via Three Days of the Condor. Black Widow fits into that genre like a glove.
Which Avengers might pop up in the new ‘Black Widow’ film
So, given that Black Widow has been a team player we’ll take a look at the likelihood of the other Avengers joining her.
Iron Man: Forget it. They teamed up once, but Tony’s dead too, and it is powerfully unlikely Disney would pay Robert Downey Jr. millions for a few days work.
Captain America: They teamed up before, so been there, done that. Chris Evans has made it clear he’s done.
Thor: His hammer would come in handy, but a deity and a spy would make for strange bedfellows.
The Hulk: Age of Ultron flirted with a Natasha/Bruce Banner romance, but the Russos basically dropped that idea for their Avengers movies.
Hawkeye: The only one who really makes sense, as noted above.
Here’s who we know is in the movie, besides Johansson: Rachel Weisz, David Harbour and Florence Pugh. The release date has not been revealed, but our best guess is next May.