Stephen McFeely and Christopher Markus -- the writers behind Avengers: Endgame -- have addressed the ultimate sacrifice made by Black Widow, admitting they have only one regret when it comes to that emotional decision.
"We certainly thought long and hard about it," McFeely told Vanity Fair. "We knew we were killing the first female hero of the Marvel Universe. We stupidly came up with these rules in the first movie—someone's going over that cliff. So we had to decide. By the way, you had to easily love the person next to you, so we couldn't send Steve Rogers and Hulk. So it's a puzzle of our own making, but it felt like it was the resolution of her arc, that if she could sacrifice herself for her new family and for half the universe, that was worth it to her."
Addressing the alternative sequence that would have seen Hawkeye sacrifice himself instead of Black Widow, McFeely explained how that was an unpopular choice among the women working on the movie. "A number of women on the crew, when we said, 'Hey, we're thinking maybe Hawkeye goes over,' said, 'Don't you do that! Don't rob her of this!'" he recalled. "And then it choked me up because I think we would have a much different conversation if Hawkeye had pushed her aside."
"She jumps on the grenade," he continued. "I'm really proud of that moment. I don't have any regrets. The only regret is that it comes at the end of Act Two. So you can't really roll around in the grief because we've got another hour of movie and we haven't solved the A-plot problem. So that's the downside."
Despite the events of Endgame, Black Widow will once again grace the big screen. The upcoming solo movie will be a prequel set before Endgame and will allegedly take place after Captain America: Civil War, following Natasha "Black Widow" Romanoff in a story that forces her to confront her past.
Directed by Joe and Anthony Russo, Avengers: Endgame stars Robert Downey Jr. as Iron Man, Chris Evans as Captain America, Mark Ruffalo as Bruce Banner, Chris Hemsworth as Thor, Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow, Jeremy Renner as Hawkeye, Brie Larson as Captain Marvel, Paul Rudd as Ant-Man, Don Cheadle as War Machine, Karen Gillan as Nebula, Danai Gurira as Okoye and Bradley Cooper as Rocket, with Gwyneth Paltrow Pepper Potts, Jon Favreau as Happy Hogan, Benedict Wong as Wong, Tessa Thompson as Valkyrie and Josh Brolin as Thanos. The film is now available on Digital HD, Blu-ray and 4K UHD.