It's a very exciting time in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Spider-Man: Far From Home wrapped up Phase Three of the massive property, and San Diego Comic-Con finally revealed the plans for the next slate of releases. The long awaited Black Widow movie will be the first installment in Phase Four, allowing Scarlett Johansson's signature character to take the spot light for the first time.
Marvel fans have been waiting years for Black Widow to get her own blockbuster, revealing Natasha's sordid backstory in the process. The movie is set to arrive in theaters in May 2020, with moviegoers waiting nearly a year until the next Marvel release. Scarlett Johansson recently spoke to the next set of movies, observing that women are taking the spotlight more than ever. As she put it:
It’s pretty explosive. The future is female for Marvel, that’s what it feels like.
I mean, she's not wrong. The Marvel Cinematic Universe became a more inclusive place in Phase Three, and studio head Kevin Feige has always maintained that the future will only get more diverse. Phase Four's original lineup seems to confirm this, and even the stars are taking notice.
Scarlett Johansson's comments to Entertainment Tonight make a great deal of sense, especially considering Black Widow will be the first movie to arrive in Phase Four of the MCU. Despite being an OG Avenger who made her debut back in Iron Man 2, Natasha Romanoff has never been given her own franchise to lead. Instead she's played supporting roles in the Avengers movies, as well as the last two Captain America flicks.
As such, Black Widow's past has never been fully explored, only seen in bits and pieces throughout her tenure in the MCU thus far. But that should change in her solo movie, as the prequel will finally reveal what happened in Budapest, as well as the atrocities she's referenced from her pre-hero life. So while the character might have sacrificed her life to procure the Soul Stone in Avengers: Endgame, fans will actually get to know the character more than ever before.
Of course, Black Widow isn't the only female Marvel character who will get to lead a project in Phase Four. Taika Waititi's Thor: Love and Thunder will bring Natalie Portman's Jane Foster back into the franchise, becoming the first Female Thor in the process. Scarlet Witch has a role in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, as well as her Disney+ series WandaVision. The Eternals will feature women in gender swapped roles, and Captain Marvel is expected to get her sequel movie as well.
It certainly seems like the future of Marvel is female, and it should be interesting to see how the studio continues to become a more inclusive place.
Black Widow will hit theaters on May 1st, 2020. In the meantime, check out our 2019 release list to plan your next trip to the movies.