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Why Black Widow Left One Major Scene Missing, According To The Director

Scarlett Johansson in Black Widow

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The following contains spoilers for Black Widow.

Black Widow took place almost entirely in the "past" of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It existed to fill in the background of the title character, showing us where she came from and how she became the hero that we all knew. However, in doing so, the movie also created its own hole in Black Widow's history. At the end of the film, the movie jumps forward in time significantly, without showing or telling us how the character got from the one place to the other. It feels a bit disjointed, but it turns out that was exactly what director Cate Shortland was trying to accomplish.

In the second to last scene of Black Widow we see Natasha stay behind to face Thunderbolt Ross and his team, who are trying to apprehend her for violating the Sakovia Accords. While she waits, Romanoff's surrogate family and the rest of the Widows make their escape. As we see a number of military vehicles approaching and Black Widow standing her ground, the movie then jumps forward two weeks, revealing Natasha is free, and has decided to go look for her other family, the Avengers.

But how exactly did Natasha get free? Did she fight off the military single handed? Did she get imprisoned but make her escape? Did she post bail? The movie never tells us exactly what happened and director Cate Shortland revealed to The Wrap that even she doesn't know what happened, as she intentionally wanted to leave the scene up to interpretation. According to Shortland...

That was intentional, because we wanted to leave the question of how she would get away, rather than allow the audience to get exhausted by another fight. We wanted to leave you guys on a high with the question of how did she use her ingenuity? Because she did. And it was probably, I would say, she bargained her way out of that situation. But I don’t know.

In the grand scheme of things, how Black Widow extricates herself from the situation would be interesting information to have, but it's not strictly necessary. We know Black Widow is capable. If she needed to talk her way out, we know she's capable of that, and if she needed to fight her way out, we can be confident she would have succeeded. And honestly, Cate Shortland is right. The movie had just finished the big finale set piece and the audience needed to come down from that a bit. Jumping right into another action sequence would have made the movie's ending a bit exhausting.

Black Widow is currently available for a limited time on Disney+, along with the character's other MCU appearances. You can use this link to sign up for the streaming service.

And who knows? Maybe, if somebody down the road has an idea, we could see this part of Black Widow's history filled in. There's a two-week period that could even become another movie if somebody has an idea that works. Maybe we haven't seen the end of Black Widow in the MCU after all.

Dirk Libbey
Dirk Libbey

CinemaBlend’s resident theme park junkie and amateur Disney historian. Armchair Imagineer. Epcot Stan. Future Club 33 Member.