'Black Widow' Recruits 'The Departed' Star Ray Winstone

The Black Widow cast continues to grow more impressive — and intimidating — with each new addition. The latest recruit is The Departed star Ray Winstone, who joins the cast of the upcoming Marvel prequel film in an undisclosed role.

Variety broke the news that Ray Winstone has joined Marvel's Black Widow stanadalone movie. Marvel and Disney had no comment on the casting, but considering Winstone's past filmography as a gruff and menacing character actor in films like The Departed, Sexy Beast, and Noah, it would be no surprise if he played a villain. But since this is the origin story of Scarlett Johansson's former KGB agent and assassin, it's very likely that he could play an ally to her Natasha Romanoff before she goes straight.

Winstone joins a star-studded cast that includes Johansson as well as Midsommar's Florence PughStranger ThingsDavid Harbour, and The Favourite's Rachel Weisz. Not much is known about the plot to this film, apart from Marvel chief and Black Widow producer Kevin Feige's recent comparisons to Better Call Saul, the gold standard for prequel storytelling. Black Widow probably won't follow the same plot as Better Call Saul — one is a spy thriller and the other is a character tragedy about a man's unraveling morality — but it is encouraging that Feige is looking at the best version of a prequel.

Cate Shortland is directing Black Widow from on a script by Jac Schaeffer. The film is currently in production in London, with some locations spotted in Norway. Look forward to learning more about the film and Winstone's casting come San Diego Comic-Con this July, where Marvel will most likely unveil some juicy information about Black Widow.