Marvel has been remarkably wimpy about female superheroes lately. Despite ladies playing major supporting roles in most Marvel movies, the studio just can’t seem to bring themselves to pull the trigger on a female-led superhero movie, insisting the timing must be just right and every star must be perfectly aligned for it to happen.
Considering how cautious Marvel currently is about female superheroes, it’s interesting to note that they were actually strongly considering a Black Widow movie all the way back in 2004. Back in the early 2000s, David Hayter, one of the writers of X-Men and X2 (and longtime voice of Metal Gear Solid protagonist Snake) wrote a screenplay for a Black Widow movie. Ultimately the movie didn’t get made, because there were actually too many female-led action movies coming out in the early-2000s. Here’s Hayter describing why the movie was killed…
“Unfortunately, as I was coming up on the final draft, a number of female vigilante movies came out. We had Tomb Raider and Kill Bill, which were the ones that worked, but then we had BloodRayne and Ultraviolet and Aeon Flux. Aeon Flux didn’t open well, and three days after it opened, the studio said, ‘We don’t think it’s time to do this movie.’ I accepted their logic in terms of the saturation of the marketplace, but it was pretty painful.”
You know, looking at the list my reaction would have been, “Hey, the market’s wide open for a girl action movie that isn’t totally terrible” (shockingly the one movie on that list that did well was Kill Bill) but I guess that’s why I’m not a Hollywood producer.
What would the Black Widow movie have been about? We would have seen some of her early training in Russia. Once the Soviet Union fell, she would have moved to America, but her Russian mentor Ivan Petrovich (aka The Crimson Dynamo) would have tracked her down, forcing a final showdown. The CIA, double-agents and all sorts of other fun would have also been involved. Basically, it kind of sounds like Hayter wrote his own Metal Gear script, then swapped himself out for a girl in a catsuit, which is a creative decision I can get behind.
So real-talk Marvel — if you were almost brave enough to make a Black Widow movie happen in 2004, it should be no problem in 2014. Stop waiting for the universe to align and just do it.
Via The Mary Sue