This isn’t the beginning of the end, just because Nerd Bastards is talking about a star’s pregnancy doesn’t mean we’re devolving into a gossipy star-f#@%ing website, but what we propose here is a completely legit question: How might Scarlett Johansson‘s recently revealed pregnancy affect the shooting of Avengers: Age of Ultron? I mean, it’s not like Ultron‘s the sequel to the third biggest movie of all time, and it’s not like director Joss Whedon previously said that Johansson’s character, Black Widow, plays a very big/important role in the film. Actually, it’s a lot like that, so what will happen?
First, a timeline. According to the highly vaunted and stoic sources at E! News, Johannson is due to give birth to her first child sometime in August, which, by their calculations, means she’s presently about four months pregnant. Ultron is scheduled to begin shooting on April 5, coincidentally one day after Captain America: The Winter Soldier hits theaters. That’s another month away, which would put Johansson squarely in the midway range of her pregnancy and undoubtedly at or near a point where she would start having a tummy. I imagine it’s pretty hard to fit into that Black Widow gear in anything less than a size zero.
So what will the production do? Recasting is not an option, first because I believe that’s illegal and secondly Ultron will be Johansson’s fourth appearance as Black Widow in the Marvel Movie Universe. This is a classic Hollywood dilemma though, and Johansson’s certainly not the first actress to face it, hiding their bellies behind counters and over-sized bags, and things. Obviously, these things get more complicated when the actress in question is required to show her fighting skills, but that ‘s what body doubles are for. To wit, the same predicament was overcome by the makers of Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides when leading lady Penelope Cruz got pregnant during production; Cruz’s sister Monica stood in for all the sword-fighting and wide angle shots.
Long story short, where there’s a will, there’s a way. Don’t expect something as straightforward, though unexpected, as Black Widow’s real life alterego being preggers to slow down the mighty Marvel movie train.
The Avengers: Age of Ultron is in theaters May 1, 2015.