Wonder Woman was one of the biggest movies to come out last year. The DC Extended Universe hasn't had a lot of things break in their direction, but the decision to beat Marvel to the punch with the first female-led superhero film was one place where they made all the right choices. Now, Marvel is left playing catch up with the long delayed Captain Marvel film in 2019. But that's not all: The first movement on a standalone Black Widow film has begun as well. So when will a Black Widow movie come out?
It should be noted that fans have been pushing for a Black Widow standalone film since the character was first introduced in 2010's Iron Man 2, played by Scarlett Johansson, as part of the cast connective tissue that would hold 2012's The Avengers together. Once her backstory, of ballet and Russian spying, was broadly hinted at in The Avengers, calls grew louder, especially when we learned more about the program through the 2013 Agent Carter TV show, and more about Natasha Romanova in 2014's Captain America: The Winter Solider.
You can see where this is going. Basically, fans have been calling for a film for nearly a decade at this point, with Marvel ignoring it in favor of yet-another-white-dude films like Ant-Man and Spider-Man: Homecoming. Even Johansson herself began saying there should be one. Saturday Night Live even parodied the idea. And yet, nothing. This is, until Wonder Woman smashed the box office patriarchy and made Marvel realize that on this front, they'd just been left in the dust.
Of course, Marvel insists that the sudden forward momentum on a stand alone Black Widow film has nothing to do with Wonder Woman's success, they've been totally ok with the concept for years. (Kevin Feige though it was a marvelous notion in 2016.) It's just an amazing coincidence that after DCEU's film wound up the third highest-grossing film of 2017 that they suddenly found themselves able to hire Jac Schaeffer to work on a script.
So, when might we expect a film? The rumors are running rampant ever since Schaeffer was hired, but the current scuttlebutt says that the Marvel Cinematic Universe is aiming for a 2020 release date, so about a year to 18 months after Captain Marvel (which arrives in March of 2019.)
This report should be taken with a healthy grain of salt though, because it doesn't come through the usual back channels, but instead through The Daily Mail. Moreover, some of the additional gossip that comes with it sounds like regurgitated facts from other Marvel movies, including that Johansson would be paid up to $25 million to do the film.
It is true that Marvel would have to do a separate deal with Johansson for a new standalone film. She's been out of contract and paid on a movie-by-movie basis since Age of Ultron. Take a guess what her fee's been rumored at, per movie. It's actually $20 million. But you can see where the numbers are coming from.
But then there's the co-stars that have supposedly been signed for the standalone: Jude Law and Ben Mendelsohn.
Now, it is true Jude Law and Ben Mendelsohn have been signed for a standalone Marvel film. But it's not Black Widow. It's Captain Marvel, which is set back in the 1990s. Unless this is going to be some sort of crossover where Scarlett Johansson is aged back 25 years, then that's just straight up taking fact from one lady superhero film and confusing it with another in order to make a story sound legit.
Still, enthusiasm is high for a Black Widow standalone, and considering how much Marvel movies make on the regular, landing a Wonder Woman of their own could even maybe beat Star Wars at the box office. Anyway you slice it, chances are high this film is happening. Let's all hope 2020 is really what they're aiming for.