"There is a pure entertainment value that is good for the soul," said the actor, during a roundtable in Los Angeles. "We live in a very literal world and as things get more chaotic we need spaces like that. It has a fantasy feel to it, it's like a dream." David Harbour, known to audiences for his role as Sheriff Hopper on "Stranger Things," stars opposite Scarlett Johansson (Natasha Romanoff), Florence Pugh (Yelena Belova) and Rachel Weisz (Melina) in the new Marvel movie, which opens in theaters on 8th July and on the Disney+ streaming platform in premium access the following day.
"One of the interesting things about the Red Guardian is that he grew up in the Soviet Union, he was a product of a certain communist structure and he has tattoos of Lenin and Karl Marx," explained the actor about his character. "There is a deep resentment in him and competition with Captain America." David Harbor revealed that many scenes that are seen in the film were improvised, the result of the true connection that was generated between the protagonists. "It was one of the most fun times of my life. When we got together there was a magic between us," he said. "A lot of what you see in the film is improvised. It was glorious, a result of the chemistry between us and the brilliance of director Cate Shortland, which allowed us to do this in a film worth hundreds of millions of dollars."
Florence Pugh, at another roundtable, also spoke of that dose of improvisation that went into "Black Widow" and the real connection she created with Scarlett Johansson. "When Scarlett and I first met, we had an instant bond from the very first rehearsal. We had to do confidence exercises and immediately started making fun of each other," she said. "I was making fun of her pose and we put that in the movie. There were a lot of things that came naturally."
Rachel Weisz said the same: "There was so much improvisation that the biggest challenge was managing not to laugh," she said at another roundtable. "David Harbor is extremely funny. Melina doesn't find him funny, she has a zero sense of humor, which maybe makes her funny." The scenes between the four protagonists oscillate between tragedy and comedy, something that spices up the noisy action of the rest of the film. Like Red Guardian, or Alexei Shostakov, David Harbor has alternated between his intense and funny sides, adopting a perfect American accent at the beginning of the film and then moving on to a rather closed Russian accent. "The accents are an homage to the reality that these people are Russian. It doesn't make literal sense, but it makes sense that this man, who has very Russian energy, has an accent. Rachel, Florence and I acquired these accents," explained the actor. "This reality requires a suspension of disbelief. Theoretically, these people would speak Russian to each other," he added, saying wearing the Red Guardian costume made him feel like a true superhero.
Focusing on the events that took place in the life of Avengers black widow Natasha Romanoff between "Civil War" and "War of Infinity", this film explores a past that was hitherto unknown and arises after her death in "Endgame". Kevin Feige, president of Marvel Studios, said at a press conference following the roundtables that this idea of looking back makes sense to other Marvel heroes. The title was filmed in 2019, but its premiere was delayed because of the covid-19 pandemic and the closing of movie theaters. It is the Marvel film that follows "The Avengers: Endgame", which became the most profitable film ever at the box office when it came out.