Scarlett Johansson’s solo Black Widow movie is getting a rewrite courtesy of Ned Benson. Marvel Studios will release their first female-led movie in the history of the Marvel Cinematic Universe in just a few weeks with Captain Marvel, but they won’t wait another twenty films for their next. Instead, they are finally set to give Natasha Romanoff a movie of her own after years of fans and creators expressing a desire to see it happen.
The movie took its first major step forward when Jac Schaeffer was hired to write the script for Black Widow last year and Marvel began the director search not too far after. The search largely consisted of female directors and is how Cate Shortland eventually was hired as the MCU’s first solo female director. Since then, Black Widow has been mounting up its production crew as it prepared to begin filming sometime in the first half of 2019, but it is now set to undergo a rewrite.
According to Collider, Marvel Studios has hired Ned Benson to rewrite the script for Black Widow. There is currently no word on how extensive or small the rewrite will be and Marvel had no comment on the news. Benson most recently wrote and directed the Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby trilogy, which is the work that reportedly impressed Marvel executives enough to get him this job.
Rewrites are a common stage for any film to go through, and the latest MCU movie is no exception. Recent films like Captain Marvel, Ant-Man and the Wasp, and Spider-Man: Homecoming all had several writers take a crack at the scripts before production began. So, Black Widow getting a rewrite from Benson is no immediate reason to be concerned about the project, unless future updates reveal that they are overhauling the script on short notice. With the rumors that Marvel is considering an R-rating for the film, the purpose of Denson’s rewrites could be to fine tune the tone if a decision has been made on the matter. Without knowing such details about the extent of this rewrite, though, the timing of it does help make some sense of recent Black Widow developments.
For months, it was reported that production on Black Widow would begin in the early months of 2019; either in February or March. However, it then just continued to be delayed ever so slightly until a report surfaced that the start of filming had been moved all the way back to June. It was unclear why this would be the case, but Benson rewriting the script makes it pretty obvious. Marvel appears to have elected to perfect the script now and wait on production rather than stick to the previous start date and rewrite the movie on the fly. Once this script is done, then it hopefully won’t be too much longer before casting decisions on Black Widow start to be announced.