‘Black Widow’ Cinematographer Mystery Solved: Gabriel Beristain Shot the Marvel Movie

     January 16, 2020

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Disney released a second trailer for Marvel’s Black Widow last week, and if you took a close look at the credit block, you’d notice that there was no cinematographer listed. It was an odd omission, to say the least.

A December 2018 tweet from Discussing Film claimed that Rob Hardy (Ex Machina) had signed on to work alongside director Cate Shortland and serve as Black Widow‘s cinematographer, and from what we can tell, initially, he did. But apparently, Hardy parted ways with the project before production began, and sources say that Marvel turned to one of its trusted collaborators, Gabriel Beristain, to tackle the job.

Beristain’s MCU credits date back to the original Iron Man, on which he’s credited as an additional photographer, though his history with Marvel goes back even further, as he served as the director of photography on Guillermo del Toro‘s Blade II. Though Beristain hasn’t served as the chief DP on a major movie in quite awhile, he has been involved with Marvel movies such as The Avengers, Guardians of the Galaxy and Thor: The Dark World, as well as the Iron Man sequels and DC’s Suicide Squad. There’s no question that he has the experience, particularly within the realm of comic book movies, to deliver the visual goods.

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Image via Marvel Studios

Marvel had no comment, which is par for the course, though it is strange that the studio has yet to announce who shot its summer tentpole, seeing as Black Widow wrapped months ago and hits theaters in May. Perhaps there’s a contractual thing that has to be worked out behind the scenes? Either way, the fact that Beristain has yet to be credited for his work on the film, which isn’t even on his IMDb page yet, raises an eyebrow. Some of Collider’s editors think that some of the shots in the Black Widow trailer look suspiciously Hardy-esque, but I could find no evidence that Hardy started working on the film and then left. I don’t know what prompted his exit prior to production — creative differences, a family emergency, etc. — but Beristain ultimately did the job, so expect to see his name in future press materials.

A representative for Beristain did not respond to a request for comment, while a representative for Hardy declined to comment.

Disney will release Black Widow on May 1. Scarlett Johansson stars alongside Florence Pugh, David Harbour, Rachel Weisz, Ray WinstoneO-T Fagbenle and William Hurt, and Alexandre Desplat is composing the score. Click here to watch the latest trailer.

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