Marvel Hires 'Black Widow' Director

It looks like Marvel's search for a Black Widow movie director is officially complete.

Australian director Cate Shortland has been tapped to direct the upcoming Marvel Studios solo film, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Shortland, who has been regarded as the frontrunner to direct the film, is best known for directing Berlin Syndrome and Lore. Other directors on the shortlist included Amma Asante (Belle), Maggie Betts (Noviate), Melanie Laurent (Galveston), and Kimberly Pierce (Boys Don't Cry). Marvel Studios reportedly met with 70 to 75 different directors for the project, with a female director being seen as a priority.

Shortland will be the first female director to singlehandedly direct a Marvel Studios movie. She is the second female director in the Marvel Cinematic Universe's roster, following Captain Marvel co-director Anna Boden.

The film will be written by TiMER's Jac Schaeffer, and will reportedly be a prequel set before the events of the first Avengers movie. Scarlett Johansson is expected to reprise her role as Natasha Romanoff/Black Widow.

While it's unclear how the plot will evolve from there, it sounds like Johansson already had some ideas in mind.

"It's such a loaded question," Johansson said during a recent interview. "Yes, I would want to in the right context and for the film to fit where I'm at, where I am in my life. I mean I've played this character for a long time. It's been probably like 8 years or more, and so much has happened in my life, my life as a performer and happened in my life personally."

"I love playing this character." Johansson continued. "And I think there is definitely an opportunity to explore the Widow as a woman who has kind of come into her own and is making independent and active choices for herself probably for once in her life. You know she hasn't always had that possibility so if it fit that criteria then yes I would want to do it."

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You can next see Black Widow - and her brand new costume - in Avengers 4, which will land in theaters on May 3, 2019.