The biggest players in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU), including Amagansett’s Scarlett Johansson and Gwyneth Paltrow, and East Hampton homeowner Robert Downey Jr., gathered for the world premiere of Avengers: Infinity War at El Capitan Theatre on Monday night. The massive event was so big it threatened to eclipse the Oscars in grandiosity, but Johansson took time to chat about her eight-year history as Black Widow.
A two-hour live stream event took place on the purple carpet—the unusual color in honor of the film’s great villain Thanos (Josh Brolin)—and featured interviews with most of the Marvel Studios biggest stars, as well as the directors, producers and others who do the hard work behind the camera. The premiere also offered a large exhibit of Marvel Studios costumes, props and other onscreen objects, as well as press conferences, fan contests and giveaways for fans and merchandise reveals.
In addition to opening up about her history with the MCU, Johansson officially announced her boyfriend of nearly a year, Saturday Night Live Weekend Update host and Montauk resident Colin Jost, to the world. It was couple’s first Hollywood
red purple carpet debut, though ScarJost also appeared as a couple at the American Museum of Natural History Gala in December.
Johansson told Entertainment Tonight, “I’m just excited to share this experience with him because I’m so excited to see the film. I haven’t seen it before!”
Tamara Krinsky and LZ Granderson interviewed a veritable Marvel who’s-who on the purple carpet, including Johansson, who wore a silver dress and purple eye shadow to match the carpet.
With Jost off camera, Johansson and her Iron Man 2 director and co-star (as Happy Hogan) Jon Favreau—who first cast the actress as Black Widow—chatted with Krinsky and Granderson about their experiences being part of the super franchise.
Johansson said Black Widow, aka Natalia Romanova, is finally coming into her own as a woman and as an individual person in Infinity War. “She finally trusts herself. I think that’s why she survived this long, is trusting her own instincts about things,” she said. When asked if she ever imagined being part of such a grand story, like Infinity War, when she signed up to play Black Widow, Johansson kept her response light. “I thought the carpet was going to be a different color, I’m not going to lie—everything else I totally foresaw,” she joked.
“She locked into that role and she created it—of course it existed in the comic books, but she brought her own spin to it,” Favreau, who is a producer of Infinity War but does not appear in the film, said, complimenting Johansson’s Black Widow and noting what a pleasure it’s been to see her evolve the character over so many movies. “I’m so happy we made the right choice when we hired her because she’s become one of the big faces of the franchise,” he added.
“I’m extremely happy about it too!” Johansson replied. “I didn’t know what the audience would think about my portrayal of the character,” she continued, pointing out, “She’s so beloved.”
Avengers: Infinity War—opening in theaters Friday, April 27—is Johansson’s sixth film as Black Widow. She debuted as the character in Iron Man 2 (2010), followed by The Avengers (2012), Captain America: Winter Soldier (2014), Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015) and Captain America: Civil War (2016). Marvel Studios also has a solo Black Widow film currently in the works.
Check South O’ the Highway for more Avengers: Infinity War news in the lead up to the film’s local premiere on Thursday night, April 26.