February 26, 2010

David Hayter Wrote A Black Widow Film?

Back in 2004 the Hollywood Reporter said David Hayter (Watchmen, X2) was going to write and make his directorial debut with a Black Widow film. Now LatinoReview has excepts from the book Tales From The Script with Hayter talking about the project. The film was going to be an origin film setup at Lionsgate. At birth the Black Widow is given to the KGB, which grooms her to become its ultimate operative. When the U.S.S.R. breaks up, the government tries to kill her as the action moves to present-day New York, where she is a freelance operative.

"I had a very solid relationship with Marvel, having worked on a number of films with them, and I was looking for something to write and direct. They brought up Black Widow, and I knew the character very well from the comic book. So I spent about a year working on the script, and I was extremely happy with it. Essentially, the story is a young Russian girl’s parents are killed, so she’s given to the KGB to be developed into a super spy. In her early teen years, the Soviet Union crumbles, so they decide to kill her. But at that point, she’s too tough to kill, so she escapes and makes her way to America. Then, years later, we catch up with her in present day. She’s a freelance mercenary, and she’s called back to where she was brought up to face her past. What I tried to do was use the backdrop of the splintered Soviet Empire – a lawless insane asylum with four hundred some odd nuclear missile silos. It was all about loose nukes, and I felt it was very timely and very cool. Unfortunately, as I was coming up on the final draft, a number of female vigilante movies came out. We had Tomb Raider and Kill Bill, which were the ones that worked, but then we had BloodRayne and Ultraviolet and Aeon Flux. Aeon Flux didn’t open well, and three days after it opened, the studio said, “We don’t think it’s time to do this movie.” I accepted their logic in terms of the saturation of the marketplace, but it was pretty painful. I had not only invested a lot of time in that movie, but I had also named my daughter, who was born in that time period Natasha – after the lead character in Black Widow. I named my daughter after a movie that I wasn’t working on anymore."

There has been lots of talk for Iron Man 2 spin-offs. Don Cheadle has said there aren't immediate plans to develop a War Machine film. The character would be staying in the Iron Man franchise as a supporting hero. There is however active development on the Nick Fury spin-off. Since high profile actress Scarlett Johansson was cast as Black Widow it was expected she would get her own film. Scarlett has a multi-picture deal with Marvel Studios similar to Sam Jackson. I wouldn't be surprised if Marvel is waiting to see the fan's response to the character in Iron Man 2 before going ahead with the film.

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