First of all, David Harbour is playing Red Guardian, the Russian equivalent of Captain America. Second…
[Ed. note: This post contains spoilers for Avengers: Endgame.]
When does the Black Widow movie take place?
During the events of Avengers: Endgame, Natasha Romanoff sacrificed her own life on the planet Vormir so that Hawkeye could walk away with the Soul Stone. It seems like that’ll be the last we’ll be seeing of Scarlett Johansson’s character — in the modern time period of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, that is.
The Black Widow movie is set earlier in the MCU continuity, but not quite as far back as, say, Captain Marvel, which took place in the 1990s. Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige confirmed at San Diego Comic-Con 2019 that the movie will take place just after the events of Captain America: Civil War, which was the last MCU movie that Black Widow appeared in before Infinity War and Endgame.
Black Widow also takes place even earlier thanks to flashbacks
The new movie is likely to give us a more complete look at Black Widow’s origin story, though flashbacks. That’s sort of how we saw it in our first hint, during which took place during Avengers: Age of Ultron, in the form of Scarlet Witch-induced visions of the past.
The scene gave us our only look — so far — at the infamous Red Room, the secretive training program that produced an elite class of female spies for the Russia of Marvel Comics.
We’ll likely get a lot more in Black Widow, with Florence Pugh playing Yelena Belova. In the comics, Belova is another graduate of the Red Room, and even takes over the role of Black Widow from Natasha for a time.