Thunderbolts Star Florence Pugh Defends the Marvel Cinematic Universe

When an actor signs on to star in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, they know they're likely gearing up for a longterm commitment. A lot of their time will be spent in the massive comic franchise, but that doesn't mean they aren't able to take on smaller, more personal projects during their MCU stint. Florence Pugh, who played Yelena Belova in Black Widow and will star in the upcoming Thunderbolts, was warned when she joined the franchise that her indie opportunities would dry up. That has yet to be the case.

During a recent interview with Total Film, Pugh revealed that those comments from peers frustrated her, because she had always planned on taking on a variety of projects, with or without the MCU.

"When I first signed onto Marvel, lots of people from the indie-film world were all telling me that I was never going to go back to small movies again, and it always kind of wound me up," Pugh told Total Film. "Because I think there's beauty in all types of those films. There's beauty in the massive, epic storylines like Dune, like Marvel, like even Oppenheimer that I did. They're amazing, mega movies. And then there's also beauty in all these little ones that not everyone is going to see, but are going to affect the right person at the right time. I've never, ever only thought that I was going to just do one type of movie. I've always known that I want to dabble in all areas."

Pugh went on to say how important that wide array of experiences can be. By splitting her time between so many different types of films, she's able to consistently learn and grow as an actor and creative.

"It's also good for my brain to dabble in all areas. I would love to direct," she said." I know how important it is to have a good dialogue with your director. I know how crucial it is. And I just feel like you can't just throw yourself at it, and hope that the spaghetti sticks. I need to learn a bit more, and understand why things go where [they do], and really watch all these people that I have been watching.

"But I personally would feel too terrified that I'd accidentally say the wrong thing, or accidentally screw up someone's day because I said, 'Maybe not that way.' I don't know. All the things that I have personally felt before while acting. I think I'll probably just need a few more years of practicing the knack of leading a ship into a storm, and pretending like everything's fine. But I would love to one day."

Thunderbolts is set to hit theaters on July 26, 2024.