New 'Black Widow' Set Photos Fuel More Budapest Theories

Photos from the UK set of 'Black Widow' hint at Natasha's secret history in Hungary.

What happens in Budapest is seen in a prequel spin-off movie. Set photos from the Hankley Common set of Black Widow, the first film in Marvel’s Phase Four, contains fallen helicopters that appear to bear insignias belonging to the Hungarian Air Force.

This is a strong indicator that Black Widow, starring Scarlett Johansson and set for release in theaters in May 2020, will explore whatever went down in Budapest, a recurring mystery in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

On Monday, on the Reddit forum r/marvelstudios, user DaUltraMarine shared “high quality” photos from the Hankley Common set of Black Widow, which contain downed choppers. Local outlet SurreyLive reports that the location is serving as a “Russian farmstead” where the planes crashed.

One of the photos reveals the planes are from the Hungarian Air Force, evidenced by the red, white, and green roundel in the shape of a tall triangle.

This is further evidence Black Widow will explore Budapest, which is less about the capital city of Hungary and more of a vague thing that happened between Natasha and Clint Barton/Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner) prior to the first Avengers movie. Previously, the film’s costume designer also shared photos on Instagram that reveal she was in Hungary to work on Black Widow.

Thus far, Renner is not confirmed to appear in Black Widow, which casts doubt on “Budapest” because of Clint’s supposed involvement. But Johansson told Good Morning America back in July a very telling no-answer about a potential cameo appearance: “My lips are sealed.”

Black Widow Budapest Helicopter Hungarian Air Force
A downed helicopter from the set of 'Black Widow,' which based on the insignia comes from the Hungarian Air Force. Fans on Reddit thinks this means the film will explore "Budapest," an unknown chapter in the life of Natasha Romanoff.

As a refresher: Budapest, which is the tenth-largest city in the European Union (likely to change in the aftermath of Brexit) with a population of 3.3 million, is the location of an unknown occurrence that happened between Hawkeye and Black Widow before their arrivals to the Marvel film franchises.

The two characters have refrenced Budapest at least twice. Once in The Avengers (2012), when Black Widow and Hawkeye were fighting off Chitauri hordes and Widow joked, “This is just like Budapest,” to which Hawkeye replied, “You and I remember Budapest very differently.”

A second time happened in Avengers: Endgame (2019). When the two ventured off together to Vormir, the remote planet containing the Soul Stone, Hawkeye again joked, “We’re a long way from Budapest.” This prompted a knowing smile from Black Widow, who shrugged it off while fans went rabid with speculation.

For years, fans have wondered about Budapest. Was it a tryst between two super agents? Is it where the two committed their most heinous crime they can only laugh about now? Or is it just some lame in-joke that actually has no real story behind it? Fans have no clue except that it’s between Clint and Natasha.

Scarlett Johansson and Jeremy Renner in 'Avengers: Endgame'
What happened between these two in Budapest? Something juicy, for sure.

Whatever the case, “Budapest” is actually causing some real-world tension for Black Widow. SurreyLive reports the Waverly Borough Council (WBC) is objecting to filming as Marvel is allegedly “in breach” of planning regulations.

The local paper reports Marvel shot scenes on July 16 and 17, and will return “in late August” to continue. However, Marvel has allegedly still not received permission to use the land, which belongs to the Ministry of Defense. The area has been previously loaned for other productions, including the James Bond series (Die Another Day and Skyfall) and a Doctor Who episode from 1970.

This has prompted objections from the parish council. A clearly frustrated council now deems the decision “irrelevant” as Marvel will have likely been finished by the time the studio actually gets approval. 

Wrote the parish council: “The application is currently shown as ‘pending decision’ when the works have already commenced and will be completed before a decision is made, rendering the time committed by WBC to considering the application apparently redundant … It would also seem that there is no merit in asking the parish council to comment when their comments are completely irrelevant. The planning process has not been followed.”

We know that Taskmaster will be the villain in Black Widow, but it may seem that Natasha’s greatest threat right now is UK parish officials.


Black Widow will be released in theaters on May 1, 2020.

Media via Imgur, Marvel Entertainment, Inverse