Black magic

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chat Scarlett Johansson on her role, make-up and picking up the art of ‘wushu' for ‘The Avengers.'

Scarlett Johansson (‘Lost in Translation,' ‘Iron Man 2,' ‘Vicky Cristina Barcelona') is excited to reprise her role as Natasha Romanoff (Black Widow) in Marvel's ‘The Avengers.' And for good reason: it is for the first time in her acclaimed career that the Golden Globe nominated actor has revisited a role. “I love the character and I love playing her,” she says.

The movie is releasing in India on April 27, 2012.

After you appeared in ‘Iron Man 2' as Black Widow, did you think your character would go on to appear in other Marvel films?

I didn't really know what the future would be for Black Widow. I didn't know if she would reappear in future ‘Iron Man' films or even how the fans would react to her, so to be part of Marvel's ‘The Avengers' is pretty exciting. I'm such a huge fan of the Widow. I enjoy bringing my ideas of how she would look and act, sculpting her. I've never been able to return to a character before. So, in a way, putting on the suit is like, “Ah, the old familiar friend.” You know where you're going with the character and you have all of this history to fall back on.

Why do you love the Black Widow character?

The thing I love about the Widow is she is all business. She's sort of in a grey area; she's not patriotic like Captain America. In a sense, she's been engaged in the good fight, despite her dark background. But she's committed because she has to be, and her moral ground is more dutiful. She knows right from wrong. That kind of attitude is what I love about her. She's just a machine; you can't get her down.

Did you refer to how Black Widow has been portrayed in the comics for the style?

There are so many renditions of Black Widow, whether it's fan art or comic art that was so '60s and space-agey. Eventually, she moves more into a utilitarian look and there are a lot of costumes and hairstyles that come with that. Some are sexier or more over-the-top and others are gritty and dirty. I think her style in the film is a combination of all those looks.

Are you learning any new fight styles for this film?

We definitely embraced wushu (Chinese martial arts) and there's a lot more weaponry in this movie that I had to learn. So that's been a bit complicated, especially learning to fight with a staff. I found it really frustrating to get the moves down. Besides being deadly, it was unwieldy. But the more I rehearsed with it the easier it got and I learned its limits and what I could do with it. But Black Widow isn't always about the twirly stuff – she does some extreme damage with the butt of her gun and isn't afraid to go there.



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