Emily Blunt, the star of A Quiet Place and Mary Poppins Returns, nearly stepped into the shoes of Natasha Romanoff, the Black Widow, in Iron Man 2. It’s a role that has since become synonymous with Scarlett Johansson, who played the character across multiple films.
“Come on, the best girl got it,” Blunt has said about Johansson, adding that she was “amazing”. It’s a role that Johansson would reprise many times, including in films like Civil War, Avengers: Infinity War, Captain Marvel, Avengers: Endgame, and the standalone Black Widow movie in 2021.
The news came from Blunt’s appearance on the Happy Sad Confused podcast, where she noted that she’d also been rumoured to be considered for roles in the MCU, including Captain Marvel, Peggy Carter and Sue Storm from Fantastic Four.
“Rumours. Talk. Queries. That kind of thing,” Blunt said, noting that she never met with producers or directors of the films. Rumours surrounding her Fantastic Four role were fuelled further by the cameo of John Krasinski, Blunt’s husband, as Mr Fantastic in Dr Strange and the Multiverse of Madness.
Since missing out on the Black Widow role, however, Blunt’s career has continued to flourish – most recently appearing as Kitty Oppenheimer, wife to the “father of the atomic bomb” in Christopher Nolan’s new record-breaking film, Oppenheimer.
In a previous interview on the Howard Stern Show in 2019, Blunt reflected on her decision to turn down the Marvel role. “I was contracted to do Gulliver’s Travels” in 2010 despite not wanting to do it, she said.
“It was a bit of a heartbreaker for me because I take such pride in the decisions that I make, and they mean so much to me, the films that I do, so that was tough,” she added. “They [Fox] kind of have a bit of a hold over you. There were other movies that I would want to do.”