Florence Pugh has captured the hearts of Marvel Cinematic Universe fans with her portrayal of Yelena Belova. However, it seems the Black Widow role almost went to Saoirse Ronan instead.
Florence Pugh made a splash when she jumped from the indie scene to the MCU. For as many issues people had with Black Widow, Pugh certainly wasn’t one of them. However, it seems that the role of Yelena Belova almost went to fellow indie darling Saoirse Ronan, who reportedly turned down the Marvel character before it was offered to Pugh:
“The Saoirse [Ronan] thing, I’ve heard stuff she’s passed on. She passed on Florence’s role in ‘Black Widow,’ the sister,” Justin Kroll revealed in a recent episode of The Town. “Marvel has not been her cup of tea, and she was not interested.”
Given Saoirse Ronan’s acting record, it’s no shock that she wasn’t interested in joining a Marvel film. While it certainly would’ve been interesting to see Ronan’s take on the now iconic Yelena Belova, it seems best for everyone that the actress passed and let Florence Pugh take a swing at the character. Once again, it seems the MCU struck gold with its casting!
Who is attached to the Thunderbolts movie?
During Marvel’s San Diego Comic-Con presentation in July, it was revealed that Jake Schreier would direct the upcoming Thunderbolts project. Eric Pearson, the writer for Black Widow, had previously written a draft of the script before being replaced by Lee Sung Jin.
Thunderbolts features a star-studded cast, including Julia Louis-Dreyfuss as Valentina Allegra de Fontaine, David Harbour as Red Guardian, Wyatt Russell as John Walker, Hannah John-Kamen as the Ghost, Florence Pugh as Yelena Belova, Olga Kurylenko as Taskmaster, Sebastian Stan as Bucky Barnes and Harrison Ford as Thunderbolt Ross. Ayo Edebir and Steven Yeun are also on board in undisclosed roles.
Thunderbolts is currently set to hit theaters on July 25, 2025. Stay tuned for the latest news regarding the future of the Marvel Cinematic Universe!