Florence Pugh: ‘So Many People in Indie Film’ Were ‘Really Pissed Off at Me’ for Joining Marvel Movies

Florence Pugh revealed to Time magazine that a lot of people in the independent film community were “pissed off” at her when she decided to join the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Pugh made a name for herself with acclaimed roles in indies such as “Lady Macbeth” and “Midsommar” before earning an Oscar nomination for Greta Gerwig’s “Little Women.” She joined the MCU as Yelena Belova in “Black Widow” and reprised the role in the Disney+ series “Hawkeye.” Yelena will be back in Marvel’s upcoming tentpole film “Thunderbolts.”

“So many people in the indie film world were really pissed off at me,” Pugh said. “They were like, ‘Great, now she’s gone forever.’ And I’m like, no, I’m working as hard as I used to work. I’ve always done back-to-back movies. It’s just people are watching them now. You just have to be a bit more organized with your schedule.”

While Pugh has hit the mainstream with her Marvel role, she hasn’t turned her back on independent films. In between Marvel movies, she shot Sebastian Lelio’s Netlfix-backed drama “The Wonder” and earned acclaim from critics for her role. She recently headlined Zach Braff’s latest indie directorial effort, “A Good Person.”

Back in March, Pugh told Total Film magazine that some people in the industry told her that she was “never going to go back to small movies again” after making the jump to the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

“It always kind of wound me up,” she said. “Because I think there’s beauty in all types of those films. There’s beauty in the massive, epic storylines like ‘Dune,’ like Marvel, like even ‘Oppenheimer’ that I did. They’re amazing, mega movies. And then there’s also beauty in all these little ones that not everyone is going to see, but are going to affect the right person at the right time. I’ve never, ever only thought that I was going to just do one type of movie. I’ve always known that I want to dabble in all areas.” 

“Thunderbolts” is set to arrive in theaters July 2024. Before that, Pugh will star in Christopher Nolan’s “Oppenheimer” and will be making her debut in a different big studio franchise: She’s playing Princess Irulan in Denis Villeneuve’s “Dune: Part Two,” joining a cast that includes the likes of Timothée Chalamet, Zendaya and Austin Butler.

“I needed people who have the necessary charisma,” Villeneuve told Time magazine about assembling the cast for his “Dune” sequel. “I think Florence, Zendaya, Timothée [Chalamet], and Austin [Butler], they will be the new power in Hollywood. These strong, charismatic figures will drag people back to the theater.”

“Dune: Part Two” opens in theaters November 3 from Warner Bros.

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