Wow, Disney+’s Hawkeye Really Had To Beg To Include (Spoiler)

Florence Pugh as Yelena Belova in Black Widow
(Image credit: Marvel Studios)

Warning! The following contains spoilers for Hawkeye Episode 4! Read at your own risk!

The Marvel Cinematic Universe is known for its planning and foreshadowing across its numerous projects – the latest example being Yelena Belova’s arrival on Hawkeye. Some fans figured Natasha Romanoff’s adopted sister might appear on the Disney+ series when the Black Widow end credit scene revealed she’s intent on taking down Clint Barton, but they may not know how that came to be. According to a recent interview with Hawkeye head writer Jonathan Igla, it took some real begging, as Florence Pugh coming to the Disney+ series was not something always set in stone. 

Jonathan Igla recently spoke with Variety about Hawkeye and Yelena’s brief debut in Episode 4. Asked if he created for the Black Widow post-credit scene that teased Yelena's eventual Hawkeye debut, Igla revealed he was involved, but perhaps not in the way some might assume:

That scene came from Marvel, but it came in response to [us] begging for and making a good case for why Yelena had a place in our story.

It’s so obvious that Yelena would want to target Clint Barton that it’s wild to hear that Jonathan Igla had to make a pitch to get Florence Pugh’s character involved in Hawkeye. Igla joining the series in its early stages certainly helped this become a reality. Fans should be thankful as well, as the plotline introduces another meaningful crossover between the film and television sectors of the MCU. 

Jonathan Igla pushed to include Yelena in Hawkeye and had a great reason for doing so. Igla talked about the ways Yelena and Clint are linked and how it plays into the theme of the series in a meaningful way. Said the filmmaker,

I think what I can safely say about it right now is that there is an obvious connection between Clint’s guilt over the loss of his best friend and the other person in the world who cared the most about her.

So far, a lot of Hawkeye is about exploring the life of Clint Barton after the events of Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame. He’s dealing with physical and emotional trauma and made quite a few enemies in the underworld during his time as Ronin. Bringing in Yelena to remind him of the death of his friend Natasha Romanoff brings everything together to potentially be resolved in the course of this exciting miniseries. Hopefully, Yelena’s inclusion brings just as much to the table as other storylines thus far and helps create more exciting scenarios for the MCU to riff on in other projects. 

Hawkeye streams new episodes on Disney+ on Wednesdays, with the penultimate chapter set to drop at midnight PST/3am EST on December 15. Be sure to check in here on CinemaBlend often for more updates on the show, which feels almost mandatory for all Marvel Cinematic Universe fans at this point due to all the sneaky Easter eggs that are being placed in the show.

Mick Joest
Content Producer

Mick likes good television, but also reality television. He grew up on Star Wars, DC, Marvel, and pro wrestling and loves to discuss and dissect most of it. He’s been writing online for over a decade and never dreamed he’d be in the position he is today.