Black Widow screenwriter Jac Schaeffer isn't afraid to shake up a story and has no time for "sour grapes voices." The upcoming movie finally sees Scarlett Johansson's Natasha Romanoff out on her own for the first time. Marvel Cinematic Universe fans have been waiting to see a standalone movie since the character first showed up in Iron Man 2, but Marvel Studios could never find the right time to develop the spin-off. Now, after the tragic events of Avengers: Endgame, the Black Widow movie will be the first project released for the MCU's Phase 4.
When it comes to making a comic book adaptation, Jac Schaeffer won't let things slip by that she disagrees with, even if it means changing the source material. "I'm not interested in adhering to comic canon that is discriminatory in any way or that violates my values system," says Schaeffer, which is more than likely why Scarlett Johansson wanted to work with her in the first place. And if people get bummed by her decisions, Schaeffer really doesn't care. She had this to say.
"When people react with hate, it saddens me. I think it's a shame. But that's not where I want to put my energy. I'm not interested in the loud, sour-grapes voices."
Jac Schaeffer isn't allowed to discuss the Black Widow movie at length but promises Natasha Romanoff is "very much on her own and over the events of the Black Widow movie; she has to reckon with some of the red in her ledger." While not much is clear about the movie, we do know that it takes place after the events of Captain America: Civil War and before Infinity War. As for what the movie will look like in terms of fighting, Jac Schaeffer kept it rooted in reality. She explains.
"The fighting (in Black Widow) is a lot of close contact, hand-to-hand combat. It's very visceral. There's a lot of aggression and power in a very human way that I find really satisfying and really exciting to watch, but it's the polar opposite to writing for super-powered characters."
Watching Avengers: Endgame on the big screen was quite the experience for Jac Schaeffer, who says she was able to watch it as a fan. While the writer had some insider knowledge about Natasha Romanoff's story arc, she admits to "crying like a baby" during the movie. As for watching the events play out on screen, Schaeffer also had a different reaction. She had this to say about watching other writers handle a character she has been working with so closely.
"It was a strange feeling. I have some proprietary feelings because if you are a writer who gets very emotionally invested in your work - which I think is most writers - the characters feel very real to you. So seeing her death in a movie that I didn't have anything to do with - it was a little bit similar to seeing an ex-boyfriend with another partner. There's a weird sort of removal that feels wrong and right at the same time. But her arc in the movie is wonderful."
Jac Schaeffer is looking forward to the world seeing the Black Widow standalone movie. Some brief footage was shown at Comic-Con this year, but it barely scratched the surface. However, it did tease a fighting scene that Schaeffer wrote and she was shocked to see how much it looked like what she envisioned in her head. You can check out the rest of the interview with Jac Schaeffer over at Inverse.