Black Widow VFX Crew Details How Final Fight Changed With Reshoots
After a year and some change of waiting, Black Widow finally hit theaters and Disney+ earlier this month, giving Natasha Romanoff (Scarlett Johansson) her first solo outing in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Like other MCU flicks before it, the cast and crew for the movie reassembled after principal photography initially wrapped to film additional scenes after internal Disney audiences give their input on the flick during test screenings.
As it turns out, some of the final fight between Romanoff and Taskmaster (Olga Kurylenko) was one candidate in need of additional footage during reshoots. According to Digital Domain VFX supervisor Hanzhi Tang, the additional fight sequence was filmed on a Disney-owned set in Los Angeles. During principal photography, that sequence was shot in and around London's Pinewood Studios, meaning the film's various visual effects vendors had to virtually insert the duo into a rendered background matching that of the London-based location.
"There was some additional photography as well months later for some of the ground shots," Tang recently told Before and Afters. "The Taskmaster fight with Natasha on the ground is quite different from what was originally envisioned. That new fight was shot at Disney Ranch in LA after the fact. They dressed up the dirt to look like the field in England, but it was more like a 20 by 20 foot patch, with bluescreen. So we needed more set extensions for this."
Though reshoots have long been looked at as a sign of trouble for a film, Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige has gone the length to call additional photography necessary for films he oversees.
"'Reshoots' was a bad word. 'Oh this movie's in reshoots, there must be a problem,'" Feige previously said during a panel at New York Film Academy in 2019.
He added, "Reshoots are key to our films, starting with Iron Man. We always say we're smart filmmakers at Marvel, but we're not geniuses and the best way to give notes on a movie is to watch the movie. So we make the movie and go, 'Oh yeah, no that's not right. That doesn't work," and have a system now that can be quite precise and efficient. [Reshoots last] sometimes one day, sometimes fifteen days, sometimes more to continue to go in and make the move the best it can be."
Black Widow is now in theaters and streaming on Disney+ Premier Access. If you haven't signed up for Disney+ yet, you can try it out here.
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