If the Black Widow Doesn't Have a Sister, Who Is Yelena Belova?

Leila Kozma - Author

Apr. 24 2020, Updated 10:54 a.m. ET

black widow yelena
Source: Getty

The forthcoming Black Widow sees Natasha Romanoff (Scarlett Johansson) return to the game after a prolonged hiatus.  

The first order of business? Before she embarks on the next round of adrenaline-drenched adventures, Natasha decides to pay a surprise visit to her "sister" and former schoolmate, Yelena Belova (Florence Pugh). Their love-hate relationship — or healthy rivalry, if you will — will be at the focal point of the new movie. 

Are you ready to find out more about Black Widow's Yelena? 

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Meet Black Widow's "sister," Yelena. 

As the first few seconds of the recently-released trailer reveal, Natasha — who goes by the name of Black Widow in the superhero community — sets out on a brand new mission. Unable to succeed by herself, she turns to her old friends, close confidantes – and her "sister," the curmudgeonly Yelena. 

Once the two manage to resolve the conflicts eating away at their relationship, the crusade against the real baddies like the Taskmaster can begin.

black widow yelena
Source: Youtube
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Natasha and Yelena have a long and complicated history, reveals the Polygon. 

As the plot of the original comic book series holds, both women studied at the Red Room, a high-profile espionage school in communist Russia. 

They were subjected to some horrific experiences, including bodily manipulation. To cover up for this, the leaders of the elite institute erased the girls' recollections, changing them to fond memories of ballet lessons instead. 

As the Polygon notes, Natasha and Yelena's relationship fluctuated throughout these years. The bitter rivals became allies, only to eventually revert to the status of cold-hearted opponents. 

While they made efforts to help out one another — Yelena volunteered to take up Natasha's space as a Soviet spy, Natasha helped her realize how little her life is worth for the Soviet government and advised her to flee to Cuba — but they never thought of each other as best friends. 

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black widow yelena
Source: Youtube

Black Widow marked a turning point in Florence Pugh's career. 

"It was one of the most bizarre, nuts, extravaganza experiences," the actress told Variety

“I think we’ve made something very raw and very painful and very beautiful and I think people are going to be really surprised by the outcome of a big action film having that much heart," Florence added later on in the interview. 

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black widow yelena
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Florence Pugh's name might be familiar from Midsommar or Little Women. 

The British actress had an incredibly successful year, having starred in big hits like Fighting With My Family, Midsommar, and Little Women

In Fighting With My Family, she appeared alongside A-listers like The Rock, Lena Headey, and Vince Vaughn. 

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Midsommar needs no introduction either: it became one of the most popular films of the summer season, sending hundred thousands of viewers into a state of unmediated shock with its raw depictions of sheer horror. 

The forthcoming Little Women will offer a feminist re-reading of the eponymous literary classic, casting Florence as the youngest sister and "regular snow maiden," Amy. 

Florence's unparalleled ability to play vastly different roles hasn't gone unnoticed. Her laid-back, nonchalant approach and vast talents won over viewers and the press alike. 

"Calling it now: by this time next year, we'll all be devoted Pugh-gilists," predicts Vogue's Emma Specter.

Check out Florence on Instagram here. 

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