Most of us out there are already well aware that Stranger Things, and Hellboy star David Harbour and Midsommar, and The Commuter actress Florence Pugh are onboard to star alongside Scarlett Johansson in Marvel's upcoming Black Widow standalone movie. And today we have word that the cast of the spin-off has just grown a bit more with the addition of The Departed and Sexy Beast star Ray Winstone joining the party. There isn't currently word on just who Winstone will be playing in the flick at this time.

Now, I don't know how you feel about this upcoming Black Widow standalone movie, but I can say without a doubt that I'm really looking forward to checking it out. If only because I'm holding out the hope that this Black Widow stand-alone movie returns the Marvel Cinematic Universe to the more grounded action-thriller roots of the Russo Brothers' Captain America: Winter Soldier. I mean, don't get me wrong, I love the cosmic fun found within recent MCU movies such as James Gunn's Guardians of the Galaxy and Taika Waititi's Thor: Ragnarok. I just think that following the epic craziness that went down in the Russo Brothers' Avengers: Endgame a more gritty, down and dirty action-thriller would be just what the strange doctor ordered.

But back to Ray Winstone for a bit. On top of the above-mentioned roles in Martin Scorcese's The Departed alongside Leonardo DiCaprio, Matt Damon, and Jack Nicholson, and Jonathan Glazer's Sexy Beast with Ben Kingsley and Ian McShane, Ray Winstone is also known for his roles in a handful of other classics. Some of these films include Ericson Core's Point Break remake starring Edgar Ramírez and Luke Bracey, Darren Aronofsky's Noah with Russell Crowe, Jennifer Connelly, and Emma Watson, and Rupert Sanders' Snow White and the Huntsman with Kristen Stewart, Chris Hemsworth, and Charlize Theron. Winstone has also starred in movies such as Martin Scorsese's Hugo with Sacha Baron Cohen, Asa Butterfield, and Chloë Grace Moretz, and Steven Spielberg's Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull with Harrison Ford, Cate Blanchett, and Shia LaBeouf. And let's not forget his role in Robert Zemeckis' motion-capture movie Beowulf with Robin Wright, Anthony Hopkins, and John Malkovich.

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While plot details are unknown at this time for Marvel's upcoming Black Widow standalone movie it's said that the motion picture will most likely follow along the lines of an origin story for the highly-trained spy and S.H.I.E.L.D. member, Natasha Romanoff. Lore and Berlin Syndrome director Cate Shortland will be taking the helm of Marvel's upcoming standalone movie from a screenplay written by Jac Schaeffer (Captain Marvel, The Hustle) and Ned Benson (The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby) based on the character created by Stan Lee, Don Rico, and Don Heck.

As always is the case with films within the Marvel Cinematic Universe, this Black Widow movie will be produced by Kevin Feige. On top of the above-mentioned cast which includes Johansson, Pugh, Harbour, and Winstone, Black Widow will also costar Oz the Great and Powerful and The Light Between Oceans actress Rachel Weisz. The film is currently in production and filming kicked off back in May in Norway and at Pinewood Studios in England. The production is expected to continue filming around the world until September. This casting update comes to us via Variety.

Cinemark Movie Club
Mike Sprague