The relationship between Hulk and Black Widow in the Marvel Cinematic Universe has always been somewhat rocky, and now it looks like the duo may reunite on less-than-stellar terms when the first installment of Avengers: Infinity War hits theaters next year. Scarlett Johansson, who has played Black Widow ever since Iron Man 2, hinted at as much in a recent interview on Bravo's Inside the Actor's Studio:
"I just finished Avengers: Infinity War. The first one. My character has this ongoing relationship with Mark Ruffalo’s character. I had such devastation that day. I don’t know why. I was so devastated. It was something about this character that Mark plays, and this is something that should feel so solid and suddenly doesn’t or there’s… And it reminded me of so much of the things going on in my own life at the time."
Johansson is likely referring to her divorce from Romain Dauriac in the last part of her statement. The two separated in January, and divorce papers were later filed in March. Johansson didn’t connect the dots regarding her real-life and on-screen relationship, so there’s a chance the two are completely unrelated (Johansson's statement is part of a larger conversation about acting). But the hallmark of the relationship between Hulk and Black Widow has been that the two are incompatible in some serious ways, including the tendency for Bruce Banner to turn into an uncontrollable 10-foot tall green monster.
Ruffalo’s Hulk is scheduled to next appear in Thor: Ragnarok, the trailers for which have already established that Bruce’s alter ego has been acting as a gladiator for an otherworldly fight pit. There’s no telling how Hulk might materialize in Infinity War, but the conclusion of Ragnarok should at least offer a clue. Whatever happens, it looks like at least one part of the Hulk’s tragic arc might come to a close in Infinity War.
Debuting in theaters on May 4, 2018, Avengers: Infinity War is a production of Marvel Studios directed by Anthony Russo and Joe Russo, starring Robert Downey Jr., Josh Brolin, Mark Ruffalo, Tom Hiddleston, Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Jeremy Renner, Chris Pratt, Elizabeth Olsen, Sebastian Stan, Benedict Cumberbatch, Paul Bettany, Samuel L. Jackson, Cobie Smulders, Benedict Wong, Zoe Saldana, Karen Gillan, Vin Diesel, Dave Bautista, Pom Klementieff, Scarlett Johanssonm, Benicio del Toro, Tom Holland, Anthony Mackie, Chadwick Boseman and Danai Gurira.