'Black Widow' Cast, Release Date, Plot and More on This Avenger's Solo Film

All you need to know about Black Widow's epic return.

At long last, Marvel Studios is giving fans what they want with a solo film starring Scarlett Johansson as Natasha Romanoff, also known as the elite spy and Avenger, “Black Widow.”. At Marvel’s San Diego Comic-Con 2019, a whole slew of announcements were made about the MCU’s Phase Four which includes Black Widow.

While details are still scarce, below is everything we know so far about Marvel’s Black Widow including the release date, key casting information, and more. Bookmark this page and check back frequently, as we’ll update our information as we learn more about the movie.

When Is The Black Widow Release Date?

It was confirmed at Comic-Con 2019 that Black Widow’s release date will be the first movie in Phase Four: May 1, 2020. It will also be one of two Films releasing in 2020, with Eternals arriving in November.

Where Can I Watch the Black Widow Trailer?

There is no trailer for Black Widow. Production is underway and new footage was previewed at SDCC 2019, where the first Black Widow footage included previews of Natasha traveling to Budapest fighting one of her former assassin friends, Yelena Belova. The two brawl throughout an apartment and it’s clear the two are a perfect match. The footage indicates these two will begin as enemies but may become allies. The footage also previews the villain, Taskmaster.

Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow
Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow, in 2016's 'Captain America: Civil War.'

Who Is Starring in Black Widow?

Scarlett Johansson will return in role as Natasha Romanoff/Black Widow. The film will be Johansson’s seventh appearance in the role on the big screen, but the first to feature her as the main star.

On April 3, Variety reported that David Harbour (Stranger Things) and Rachel Weisz (The Favourite) were both “in talks” to join the film as so-far unnamed characters; Variety also named Florence Pugh (set to star alongside Emma Watson in Little Women) as “on board” for Black Widow.

In an interview with Entertainment Tonight, Harbour commented, just barely, on his involvement with the film. “Yeah man, like I want to do the movie,” he said. He added that he feared Marvel would “kick me out so fast” if he revealed anything.

“Look here’s what I will say,” he added. “It’s being directed by this woman Cate Shortland who is a phenomenal director. She directed a movie called Lore. She’s a phenomenal director, so what’s really exciting to me about it is it’s gonna be like a real deep, interesting film. And so yeah, I’m just excited for it as a film as well as a superhero movie.”

At SDCC 2019, Harbour was confirmed to play Red Guardian, a character imagined as Russia’s answer to Captain America. Weisz will play Melina; Pugh is Yelena Belova; and O-T Fagbenle (The Handmaid’s Tale) will play Mason. The identity of Taskmaster has yet to be revealed.

Avengers Endgame Scarlett Johnasson Black Widow
Scarlett Johansson, in 'Avengers: Endgame' (2019)

Who Is Writing and Directing Black Widow?

Cate Shortland, the Australian director of 2012’s Lore and 2017’s Berlin Syndrome, is directing Black Widow for Marvel Studios. The Hollywood Reporter broke the news of Shortland’s hiring back in July 2018.

Prior to Shortland’s enlistment, Marvel hired Captain Marvel co-writer Jac Schaeffer to pen the script. Schaeffer came to Hollywood’s attention after her acclaimed sci-fi comedy The Shower, about an alien invasion that takes place during a baby shower, was scooped up by megastar Anne Hathaway in 2015, though The Shower has yet to be produced.

In a feature interview with Inverse, Schaeffer commented on Black Widow, saying, “I’m not interested in adhering to comic canon that is discriminatory in any way or that violates my values system.”

She added that while she didn’t grow up a fan of comic books, “there’s just so much opportunity to make big, positive statements … Especially something like Captain Marvel and Black Widow, to have these female-centered stories — I just can’t not be involved in that.”

In February 2019, Marvel hired Ned Benson to rewrite Schaeffer’s script. Collider reported Marvel was impressed by Benson through his work in his Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby films, titled Him, Her, and Them, which follows the story of a married couple (played by James McAvoy and Jessica Chastain) whose stories are seen from their own separate perspectives.

Captain America Civil War Black Widow Scarlett Johansson
Johansson, again as "Black Widow" in 2016's 'Captain America: Civil War.'

What Is the Story of Black Widow?

No one besides Marvel knows the plot of Black Widow. The Hollywood Reporter, in its article about Shortland, reported the film will take place before 2012’s The Avengers. It was later confirmed the film takes place just after the events of 2016’s Captain America: Civil War but before Avengers: Infinity War.

That Hashtag Show also reported that the film will feature Taskmaster as a villain. Taskmaster has some cult popularity among fans, having made appearances outside the comics in video games like Marvel vs. Capcom 3 and Insomniac’s insanely-popular Spider-Man for PlayStation 4.

Some potential comics to read to brush up on the film could be Paul Cornell’s Black Widow: Deadly Origin and Marjorie Liu’s Black Widow: The Name of the Rose both of which are wise “homework reads” if you want to get ahead of your friends on all things Black Widow. Mark Waid’s 2016 Black Widow series was also really rad.

Black Widow will be released on May 1, 2020.

Media via Marvel Entertainment, Inverse, Marvel