The Disney+ release of “Black Widow” is just a few weeks away and star Scarlett Johansson is looking at her character’s evolution over the past decade since Natasha Romanov was introduced in “Iron Man 2”.
Speaking with Collider, Johansson looks back at how the character was hyper-sexualized at first, something that has lessened over time.
“It definitely has changed and I think part of that change has probably — it’s hard because I’m inside it, but probably a lot of that is actually from me too,” Johansson explains. “I’ll be 35 years old and I’m a mom and my life is different. Obviously, 10 years have passed and things have happened and I have a much different, more evolved understanding of myself. As a woman, I’m in a different place in my life, you know?”
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According to Johansson, that’s led her to become “more forgiving of myself, as a woman, and not — sometimes probably not enough. I’m more accepting of myself, I think. All of that is related to that move away from the kind of hyper-sexualization of this character and, I mean, you look back at ‘Iron Man 2’ and while it was really fun and had a lot of great moments in it, the character is so sexualized, you know?”
At one point in “Iron Man 2”, she recalled, Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) “calls her a piece of meat and maybe at that time that actually felt like a compliment. You know what I mean? Because my thinking was different. Maybe I even would have… my own self-worth was probably measured against that type of comment or, like a lot of young women, you come into your own and you understand your own self-worth. It’s changing now. Now people, young girls, are getting a much more positive message, but it’s been incredible to be a part of that shift and be able to come out the other side and be a part of that old story, but also progress. Evolve. I think it’s pretty cool.”
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“Black Widow” debuts on Friday, July 9.