Since being introduced in 2010, Black Widow has been an important player in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, whether it’s spying for S.H.I.E.L.D. or fighting as an Avenger. However, aside from her frequent partner Hawkeye, she’s the only one of the founding Avengers to not star in her own movie. This has been to the dismay of many fans, including actor Clark Gregg, a.k.a. Phil Coulson on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., who believes it’s time for Black Widow to go on her own adventure.
Gregg, who costarred with Scarlett Johansson in The Avengers, told Digital Spy that he wants a Black Widow to star in her own movie, and trusts that Marvel won’t waste her potential. As he put it:
Black Widow has been around from day one of this, and is portrayed with this kind of heavy-hearted ferocity by Scarlett Johansson - who I think is as good as any actor working today. It seems like it would be tragic, it would be a waste, if that character wasn't given the spotlight in the way that some of the other characters have been. If I know Marvel, they won't let that happen, because she's too valuable an asset.
Gregg isn’t far off saying that Black Widow has been around since “day one.” Superhero-wise, only Iron Man and Hulk debuted before her in the MCU, release-wise (chronologically, Thor and Captain America have them beat). Since then, she’s been a key member of the Avengers and assisted Steve Rogers in Captain America: The Winter Soldier.
While her presence in these other movies has been welcome, Black Widow's decades-long history in the comics certainly provides enough material for her own movie. Fans have also slowly learned about her past as an assassin, most recently in Avengers: Age of Ultron through the Scarlet Witch-induced visions, so surely there would be enough from that part of her life to incorporate into a solo story. This would give Marvel another opportunity to put one of their most famous superheroines in the spotlight on their own. Currently in the MCU, 2019’s Captain Marvel is their only female-led feature, though Hope van Dyne will be a co-lead with Scott Lang in Ant-Man and the Wasp.
With Marvel’s Phase Three already filled up, the soonest we could see a Black Widow movie would be in Phase Four. In other words, anytime after Inhumans is released in summer 2019. By then, it’s unclear if Johansson will stay with the franchise or move on to other things, but if it’s the former, then the next step forward for her could be a Black Widow movie. That said, if Marvel really doesn’t see such a film fitting with their future plans, maybe they would be up for doing a Black Widow miniseries. Heck, they could even bring Coulson into the mix. It’s about time at least one of the Avengers learn he’s alive.
We’ll see Black Widow back in action when Captain America: Civil War rolls into theaters on May 6, and if all goes well, Johansson will likely return for the Avengers: Infinity War movies, though nothing is confirmed yet.