Scarlett Johansson is happy about having the "rare opportunity" to play the mercenary The Black Widow, a woman who stands on her own, rather than as a love interest or sidekick, in "The Avengers."
The 27-year-old actress is one of Hollywood's most popular sex symbols who was even the target of a recent nude photo scandal. She first debuted her character, whose alter ego is Natasha Romanoff, and showed off her fighting skills - in a sexy catsuit - in "Iron Man 2." In "The Avengers," she teams up with Iron Man, played by Robert Downey Jr., and various other Marvel Comics superheroes to try and stop the evil God Loki and his army.
"The Widow has no time for funny business," Johansson told OnTheRedCarpet.com.
"The Avengers" is directed by "Buffy The Vampire Slayer" creator Joss Whedon. Johansson said that she owed her "Widowdom" to director Jon Favreau, who helmed both "Iron Man" films.
"I don't think I would think of myself as being this badass super heroine," the actress said. "He took a chance on me and I was able to build a character really from that, from 'Iron Man 2,' and being able to play a woman who is not a love interest, she's not a wife, she's not a sidekick, she is her own ... she's a mercenary, really, and it's a rare opportunity."
Despite her character's ability to hold her own as a superhero, the actress added that she is "never one of the guys. Never ever."
"The Avengers" also stars Chris Hemsworth, Chris Evans, Mark Ruffalo, Clark Gregg, Samuel L. Jackson, Cobie Smulder and Tom Hiddleston and is set for release in the United States on May 4. As of Monday, April 30, It has already made $178 million abroad.
Reporting by George Pennacchio of KABC Television, which produces the syndicated entertainment show "On The Red Carpet" (check for local TV listings).