Outspoken “Black Widow” star Scarlett Johansson continues to have her franchise character’s back.
After years of anticipation, Marvel’s leading lady joined her Avengers counterparts and finally starred in her own stand-alone film.
Leading up to the July 9 premiere of “Black Widow,” Johansson, 36, caused a bit of a stir when asked about the evolution of her character, Natasha Romanoff — also known as the titular comic book hero. The two-time Oscar nominee decried the “piece of ass” hypersexualization of her character throughout the franchise’s evolution.
Now, Johansson has revealed that there were thwarted attempts — by male writers — to make her character a sexy blond bombshell during the scripting process of Marvel’s ninth blockbuster installment in 2014.
“When we were doing ‘Captain America: The Winter Soldier’ — this is a really funny thing — the look is fantastic and utilitarian,” Johansson told Fatherly on Thursday. “She first drives up in this beautiful car and picks up Cap — and initially in the script, it was like, she arrives in her tennis whites, with a blond wig. It was very quickly killed.”
Johansson went on to discuss other ways Black Widow was developed from a prop to a three-dimensional character, allowing for her true emergence as a leading franchise character.
“After ‘Iron Man’ to going into ‘Avengers,’ there’s been an evolution of her look,” Johansson told the outlet. “I think part of that is just gaining the trust of the executives at Marvel and kind of sitting in the character and just being able to make decisions for her. That really happened fairly early on. I mean, in ‘Iron Man 2.’ ”
Johansson also explained how the creation was a joint effort: “I worked with the amazing, incredible costume designer Mary Zophres, who created an absolutely beautiful femme fatale look for the character. And it was very stunning.”
Johansson goes on to explain the 2014 environment: “You work with a lot of male writers. Things were shifting. You have to be a part of the change. Audiences are also demanding stuff and there’s a cultural shift, and it feeds everything into a more progressive direction.”
With a decade of portraying the character under her belt, Johansson has admitted that, in some ways, she grew in tandem with Natasha Romanoff.
Johansson told IndieWire of the joint evolution: “It definitely has changed and I think part of that change has probably — it’s hard because I’m inside it, but probably a lot of that is actually from me, too. I’ll be  years old and I’m a mom and my life is different.”
Johansson — who is currently expecting a child with her husband, “SNL” star Colin Jost, 39 — continued, “Obviously, 10 years have passed and things have happened and I have a much different, more evolved understanding of myself. As a woman, I’m in a different place in my life, you know? And I felt more forgiving of myself, as a woman, and not — sometimes probably not enough. I’m more accepting of myself, I think.”
Marvel’s “Black Widow” premiered on Friday and is available to watch in theaters and to stream on Disney+ through Premier Access.