Black Widow Director Reveals Which Scene Kevin Feige Fought To Keep In – Screen Rant

Black Widow director Cate Shortland reveals which scene Kevin Feige fought to include in the film, despite her and Scarlett Johansson’s hesitation.
The director of Black Widow has revealed the scene that Marvel Studios head Kevin Feige insisted should stay in the final cut. Black Widow hit theaters in July following delays due to the Global pandemic, and also debuted on Disney+’s Premium access service simultaneously in a risky move from Disney and Marvel. The gamble paid off, however, and Black Widow went on to reinvigorate the injured cinema industry, grossing over $180 million domestically, which was a record hit for 2021 at the time. However, Marvel broke its own record when Shang-Chi and the Legend Of the Ten Rings released in September.
Black Widow, which is the 24th movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, was the long awaited solo-movie for Avenger Natasha Romanoff (Scarlett Johansson). In the film, Romanoff is brought back to her native Russia in search of her former adopted family in order to bring down the Red Room facility that trained her and dozens of other orphaned girls to become heartless assassins. In taking on the project, director Cate Shortland, who was making her first Hollywood blockbuster after a career of indie filmmaking, got her first experience dealing with one of the biggest and most efficient studios in the entertainment industry.
Related: How Disney Ended Scarlett Johansson’s Black Widow Lawsuit 
Speaking with Empire, Shortland revealed that one particular scene in Black Widow was heavily favored by Kevin Feige, who fought hard to make sure it remained in the film. Feige, who has overseen the global success of the interconnected films and shows of the MCU, is known for his firm but friendly approach when it comes to the direction of Marvel characters and narratives. Shortland said the emotive dinner table sequence, in which Natasha, her adoptive sister Yelena (Florence Pugh) and her surrogate parents, Alexei (David Harbour) and Melina (Rachel Weisz), find themselves arguing over their estranged history, was a favorite of Feige’s. Shortland said both herself and Johannson “kept fighting” the studio head on its inclusion, arguing it wouldn’t work, but Feige was very keen to keep the sequence. Read Shortland’s full comments below:
“He doesn’t give you many directives, he’s very free … But that was a scene he really felt needed to be in the film, and Scarlett and I kept fighting him on it, saying, ‘How will this ever work?’ But it became a very alive thing. You’ve got this bunch of people shipwrecked together, who are still desperately trying to cling onto the roles that they had in Ohio, because that’s all they know. That’s all they have. And it’s beautiful for me.”
The scene in question is one of the standout character moments in the blockbuster movie, perfectly capturing the film’s dual tones of action-drama and comedy. While Shortland notes how difficult it was to realistically adapt the moment into a realistic conversation, the actors involved helped to make it something natural and truly emotive. Over its long history, the MCU movies have had several notoriously scrapped moments and ideas, while Feige has sometimes inserted extra side plots or removed certain moments in order to further plan the roadmap for the ultimate Marvel crossovers. Sometimes, the studio has come into conflict with directors who didn’t share the same vision as the producers; be it Edgar Wright leaving the first Ant-Man, or other directors choosing not to return for the sequels to their movies, as is the case in the upcoming Doctor Strange 2. Making a Marvel movie can be a lot harder to perfect than making a regular film, with plenty of pre-established narrative baggage attached. But in an age where director’s cuts for studio-interfered movies are becoming more common and more widely-supported, Marvel remains a unique anomaly in that, more often than not, the studio gets things right with its first try.
Shortland’s explanation shows that Feige isn’t quite as demanding as some might think, and that the Black Widow director was given lots of freedom in her role. Feige naturally has a lot of control over the MCU films, but so far the success rate speaks it for itself, and fans of Black Widow will agree that both Feige and Shortland made the right call. The moment in question is an example of everything that the movie got right about its central characters; a warped family dynamic that is equal parts chaotic and warm.
Next: The MCU Just Answered A Black Widow Mystery 
Source: Empire
Elliott is a freelance entertainment writer for Screen Rant from Northamptonshire, England. A trained actor, Elliott is also a keen film and TV enthusiast, which led to him pursuing entertainment and media writing. Following years of amateur film critique and review, Elliott established a Social media page for his Film Review site ETCinema Reviews, before further adding to his experience by joining Screen Rant.


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