Joss Whedon's announcement this past weekend at San Diego Comic-Con that Avengers 2 will officially be known as Avengers: Age of Ultron has whipped up even more excitement over the superhero sequel and what's next for some of our favorite Marvel characters. As a major Black Widow/Hawkeye (aka Natasha/Clint) shipper, I'm especially curious about what's next for the Avengers' master assassins, since they likely won't appear together in a film before Avengers 2 (unless Marvel is planning to sneak a Hawkeye cameo into Captain America: Winter Soldier, which is always a possibility).
We haven't heard yet about specific plans for teammates and close friends Hawkeye and Black Widow yet, but here's what Whedon has recently said about the characters as individuals and his plans for them in his next film:
On Scarlett Johansson's Natasha Romanoff, the Black Widow:
She was the most fun for me [in the first film] because she's not a hero, you know, and it's something that I read - and I feel bad that I can't remember who wrote the book - but it's in one of the books explaining: “These guys are heroes, you are a spy. It's a different thing, it's a different skill set, and you don't have their moral high ground or any of that good stuff.” And that just makes her so interesting to me. So yeah, the stuff I've got going on with her in the second one is killer
And that just makes her so interesting to me. So yeah, the stuff I've got going on with her in the second one is killer.
—Quote from this post by Digital Spy, which cites a video of a panel Joss did at NerdHQ during Comic-Con
And on Jeremy Renner's Clint Barton, Hawkeye:
Part of the fun for me, definitely this time around, is writing Hawkeye. He did get possessed pretty early by a bad guy and had to walk around all scowly for most of the movie so now it’s nice to actually have the character there and see him interact with the other guys.
—Quote from this post by Screen Rant from an interview with Whedon at Comic-Con
Seems fair to assume that beefier roles for both of them in the Avengers sequel will probably mean more screen time together, right? Fingers crossed?
Of course, whether there'll be any romance between them seems more up in the air than ever, since Natasha will apparently be appearing sans Hawkeye in Captain America 2 (where will her fellow S.H.I.E.L.D. team member be? on vacation? getting help dealing with Loki's brainwashing?) and there are pictures of [highlight for spoilers] Natasha and Steve a.k.a. Captain America kissing. It SEEMS like maybe that's just part of an undercover operation, but who knows?[/spoilers] And that's not even taking into account Natasha's comic book history with Bucky Barnes, the Winter Soldier. Could we see Black Widow and Winter Soldier become an item rather than Black Widow and Hawkeye? Or will Natasha decide to pass on all of them as love interests and be a happy single?
What do you think will happen with Natasha and Clint in Avengers: Age of Ultron, and what would you like to see happen?
ETA 3/4/15: The latest Avengers 2 trailers seem to be hinting at not Clint/Natasha but rather a Natasha/Bruce romance. Is this just misdirection, or was I TOTALLY off-base in assuming Hawkeye/Widow would be an item? Only time will tell. Personally, I'm hoping Entertainment Weekly's Anthony Breznican is right that she's just being protective of him, but that moment in the farmhouse with her in a robe does seem pretty intimate... Aaaahhh, can't the movie just come out already?!