LOS ANGELES — Scarlett Johansson is deep in Alfred Hitchcock's world now, playing Janet Leigh opposite Anthony Hopkins' Hitchcock in the late filmmaker's biopic, but she's ready to put on her Black Widow super suit should Marvel call again.
The 27-year-old actress is the lone female in a crew of six superheroes fighting to save humanity in “Marvel's The Avengers,” which opened Friday in North America amid speculation that it could break the box office record for an opening weekend.
Where Thor (Chris Hemsworth) has a cape and hammer and Captain America (Chris Evans) has his spangled suit and shield, Johansson thought her “Avengers” costume was lackluster until she acknowledged its benefits.
“I thought I drew the short end because I was complaining about the fact that I wear this latex catsuit and how uncomfortably hot it is and all of that, and then I look around and think, you know I had it pretty good. Chris Hemsworth actually has a cooling system attached to his costume,” she said. “We spent a lot of time comparing and contrasting the pluses and minuses of our superhero suits.”
Though her costume was unforgivingly unbreathable and she spent months training to perform in it, Johansson said she'd wear it again in a second to tell the story of Black Widow.
“I love her origin story. I think it's just such a riveting one,” she said. “It's just steeped in history and the richness to shoot in Russia, perhaps. … I hope that the fans' voice is loud enough and they want to see a Widow origin story, I know Marvel would be happy to entertain that. We've spoken a lot about it.”
Johansson's Black Widow (aka Natasha Romanoff) first appeared in the second Iron Man film. In “The Avengers,” viewers learn more about her relationship to peacekeeping agency S.H.I.E.L.D.
“You see a little bit about how Natasha joined and it's not that she's fighting for the greater good of humanity,” the actress said. “She was almost salvaged by S.H.I.E.L.D. and so she's loyal to that group, to that agency, but only as sort of paid debt.”
Sounds like a setup for a film of its own.