Scarlett Johansson on Choosing Roles and “Pushing Your Boundaries”

Actress Scarlett Johansson
“Breathing life into a character means celebrating and recognizing the fullness of them — that you can be a lot of things at one time, that it doesn’t have to be black or white.” – Scarlett Johansson

It’s worth noting that in between playing Black Widow in The Avengers and Captain America: The Winter Soldier — which had a combined box office gross of over $2 billion dollars worldwide — Scarlett Johansson appeared in Under the Skin, a low-budget sci-fi thriller in which she played an alien that preys on men in the Scottish highland. It highlights what has been a very varied career for the actress. In an interview with the New York Times, Johansson speaks about what attracts her to the different roles that she plays.

Johansson notes what appealed to her about becoming Black Widow in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, saying, “I’ve always had the same principle for choosing roles, which is to try and make movies that I would pay to see. As I get older that’s meant different things. I’ve never been a superhero-comic fan exactly. I did Iron Man 2 because I loved what [the director Jon] Favreau did with Iron Man. It spoke to me as someone who was not a fan of that genre, and I saw a future in building a character with Marvel. The idea of doing a franchise was exciting — being able to play a character over many installments, the challenge of playing a character who had a built-in fan base, and trying to put my stamp on that character.”

She adds that most of the reasons why she chooses the roles that she does is because of the opportunities to do something new. She explains, “I look for projects with filmmakers who want to make things that give the audience a fresh experience… I’ve always been very competitive, and a part of that is pushing your boundaries — taking a risk, and being able to live with the loss that comes with taking a risk.”

In the case of Black Widow, one aspect of the character that Johansson connects with Natasha’s vulnerability. She points out, “Admitting that you’re vulnerable is a very powerful thing. There’s something to be said for a character having a quiet strength about them. So many contradictory things make up a multidimensional personality. Breathing life into a character means celebrating and recognizing the fullness of them — that you can be a lot of things at one time, that it doesn’t have to be black or white.”

Leave a Reply

http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/24-legacy-corey-hawkins.jpg
Tony Nominee Corey Hawkins on His Nearly-Disastrous Juilliard Audition
"I remember thinking, ‘I want to go to Juilliard, I want that structure and I want that rigor and that classical foundation.’" - Corey Hawkins
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/the-walking-dead-josh-mcdermitt.jpg
Josh McDermitt: “I moved to LA a little later in my life than when most people move and I feel like I’m better for it.”
"You have wins, you have losses. You have to remain positive, that’s probably the biggest challenge; to not get yourself down." - Josh McDermitt on Acting
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/tracy-letts-indignation.png
Tracy Letts on Turning Down Acting Work: “It’s not worth doing work that I’m not proud of”
"I'm in a weird and enviable position in that, because of my playwriting, I don't have to do anything as an actor I don't want to do." - Tracy Letts
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/elizabeth-moss-handmais-tale.jpg
Elisabeth Moss on ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ and Doing Television When Actors Weren’t “Supposed” to Do Television
"I still get excited when I get offered stuff. Like, a part of me thinks, They think I can do it! That’s awesome!" - Elisabeth Moss
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/dennis-quaid-dogs-purpose.jpg
Dennis Quaid on Discovering Acting and His Early Career
"I discovered that acting was really a study of human behavior; what made people tick. And that fascinated me, and still fascinates me." - Dennis Quaid