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Black Widow Star Gets Candid About Marvel Reshoots: “It Can be Soul-Destroying”


Summary

  • Ray Winstone found working on
    Black Widow
    “soul-destroying” due to tedious reshoots and producer interference.
  • Black Widow
    ‘s release faced piracy issues, and suffered from heavy criticism over its visual effects.
  • Despite its flaws,
    Black Widow
    introduced key characters for the MCU, setting the stage for the upcoming
    Thunderbolts
    film.



Many actors have shared fond memories of being part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but Ray Winstone isn’t one of them. The British actor made his one and only MCU appearance in 2021’s Black Widow as Dreykov, the main antagonist who serves as a key figure from Natasha Romanoff’s past and the mastermind behind the creation of the “Widows.” In an interview with Radio Times, Winstone candidly shared his feelings about working on the movie, which he found tedious and “soul-destroying” thanks in part to Marvel Studios penchant for reshoots.

Black Widow

Natasha Romanoff confronts the darker parts of her ledger when a dangerous conspiracy with ties to her past arises. Starring Scarlett Johansson and Florence Pugh.

Release Date
July 9, 2021

Runtime
2hr 14min

Format
Theatrical

Studio
Marvel Studios

Tagline
She’s Done Running From Her Past.

Franchise
Marvel


Black Widow was a movie that came to fruition at completely the wrong time. Released as the first movie of the MCU’s Phase 4, Scarlett Johansson’s solo story already had the impossible job of following Avengers: Endgame and Spider-Man: Far From Home, and then landed right in the middle of the Covid pandemic with a Day & Date release. Although this allowed many people to purchase and watch the movie without venturing into a cinema, it also led to a huge surge in piracy of the film, and saw Johansson take Disney to court over lost earnings.

It seems that while the release of the film was plagued with issues, working on the film was no better for Winstone, who revealed that everything was “fine” until it came to returning to reshoot numerous scenes. He said:


“It was fine until you have to do the reshoots. Then you find out that a few producers have come down, and your performance is too much, it’s too strong… That’s the way Marvel works. It can be soul-destroying because you feel like you’re doing great work. I actually said, ‘You ought to recast it because that was it for me.’ And you end up doing it again because you’re contracted to do it. Otherwise you end up in court. It’s like being kicked in the balls.”


Black Widow Failed Scarlett Johansson’s Natasha Romanoff

Black Widow
Marvel Studios

Black Widow was meant to be the moment that Scarlett Johansson’s original Avenger was given a chance to shine in her own right. However, circumstances seemed to dictate that things would not quite go to plan. From complaints over the movie’s visual effects, to disappointment from those fans expecting the movie to be on the same scale as its immediate predecessors, and its controversial release strategy, Black Widow was a movie that was always going to be as close to a failure as the MCU had seen at that time.


Related

Why Does the MCU Need the Thunderbolts?

The Marvel Cinematic Universe is more expansive and complicated than ever. The new Thunderbolts film could fix some of the issues that come with that.

Despite the film’s faults, like every Marvel movie, it did serve another purpose than just giving Natasha her solo story. Black Widow introduced several characters that will next year form part of the Thunderbolts line-up, including David Harbour’s Red Guardian and Florence Pugh’s Yelena Belova. The film also set in motion Yelena’s revenge mission that would see her take on Hawkeye in his Disney+ series. So, while the movie is not one that sits at the top of many fans’ MCU lists, it does have an important place in the Marvel story that will likely be revisited following the release of Thunderbolts next summer.

Black Widow
is available to stream on Disney+.
Thunderbolts
is released in cinemas on May 2, 2025.




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