A-listers Scarlett Johansson and Chris Evans have one of those Hollywood friendships we covet.
They've known each other for over 10 years, meeting when they made the teen heist comedy The Perfect Score in 2004. Since then, they have worked together on six films, including the four biggies in the Marvel Cinematic Universe,
The fact Johansson and Evans were besties before they even entered the MCU makes their relationship even more special. Playing two of the original Avengers, Natasha Romanoff aka Black Widow and Steve Rogers aka Captain America, the two infused their real-life friendship into their superhero characters, giving a richer context to their interactions onscreen.
Naturally, because of the great chemistry between them – and the fact they are both just too darn good looking as a pair – many rumors have swirled that Johansson and Evans dated. And if not, many fans thought they should be, and it was just a matter of time before things would finally turn romantic.
However, the close friends have defied the odds and have always kept their relationship strictly platonic. They truly think of themselves as brother and sister, and we've simply enjoyed watching them banter and play together throughout their entire MCU journey. One wonders what they might do next as a pair once the Avengers ends.
Here are 15 Secrets Behind Chris Evans And Scarlett Johansson’s Friendship.
15 WHAT HAPPENED WHEN THEY MET
When Scarlett Johansson and Chris Evans first met on the set of their 2004 movie The Perfect Score, Johansson was already a seasoned pro. The actress got her start as a child, starring in movies like The Horse Whisperer and If Lucy Fell. In fact, by 2004, the 20-year-old Johansson had already made her first real splash in Sofia Coppola's Lost in Translation and was becoming one of the indie film world's “it” girls.
Evans, on the other hand, was just starting out as an actor. He had done one short-lived TV series and the teen comedy spoof Not Another Teen Movie, so The Perfect Score was another step in his burgeoning film career.
The heist comedy focuses on six high-school seniors who all need to ace the SATs for various reasons but can't quite cut the mustard. They decide to break into the Princeton Testing Center and steal the answers so they can all get perfect scores. It also stars Erika Christensen, Bryan Greenburg, Darius Miles, and Leonardo Nam.
Johansson described her first encounter with Evans to Variety. “Our storylines didn’t cross paths too much. We did have one scene where we had to sing together. I was talking to Chris about it the other day, actually.”
14 WHY KISSING ON SCREEN IS NOT A BIG DEAL
Although their friendship was off to a great start, Johansson and Evans didn't actually work together again until 2007's The Nanny Diaries.
Johansson was quite busy in between, starring in Woody Allen's Match Point and Christopher Nolan's superb The Prestige. Meanwhile, Evans got his first taste of playing a comic book superhero when he starred as Johnny Storm, aka the Human Torch, in Fantastic Four. While the movie was poorly reviewed, everyone singled out Evans' performance as the wisecracking Johnny as one of the best parts to the movie and its sequel.
Then the two friends reunited on The Nanny Diaries, a big-screen adaptation of the popular YA novel. Johansson stars as a college graduate who goes to work as a nanny for a rich New York family. Ensconced in their home, she has to juggle their dysfunction and her young charge who is in desperate need of attention.
Evans plays Johansson's love interest, aptly named “Harvard Hottie.” Let's just say, you can see the sparks between the two actors and play-pretending to be in love didn't look like it was much of a chore.
The actress once talked about kissing Evans onscreen with Access Hollywood. “Any excuse to get close to Chris Evans is delightful... At this point, we're old and jaded, so it's like, 'Bring him on!' No big deal. Pop in the Tic-Tacs. Get the cameras rolling.”
13 SCARLETT CONVINCED CHRIS TO JOIN THE MCU
Then the Marvel Cinematic Universe came calling for them both. Johansson was the first to enter the MCU when she was cast as Natasha Romanoff, aka Black Widow - the Russian spy and S.H.I.E.L.D. agent. Black Widow made her grand debut in 2010's Iron Man 2 and the actress' performance was a hit right off the bat; audiences and comic-book aficionados alike loved her from the beginning.
When it came time to cast Steve Rogers aka Captain America for The First Avenger, Marvel looked to Evans, who certainly embodied the part of the all-American war hero. The actor, however, was incredibly apprehensive to join another Marvel franchise, not only because his foray with Fantastic Four was universally panned, but also because, as he has said in the past, he didn't know if wanted to be saddled with a high-profile franchise and the fandom that came with it.
Johansson told Variety she spoke to her good friend about taking on the Cap role. “I talked to him a little about it because I had already signed on to do Iron Man. Of course, the pressure wasn’t on my shoulders like it was on Chris’. I was playing a character that Marvel was invested in, but we didn’t know if the audience was going to be totally behind the Widow at that point. It was like I was dipping my toe in. He was taking the full brunt of the production on his shoulders. It can feel like a gilded cage at times.”
12 THEIR ONSCREEN SIZZLE
We are sure glad they both decided to stick it out in the MCU. Capitalizing on their already fantastic onscreen chemistry, the two friends finally appeared together as their Marvel characters in the first Avengers movie, and while they don't have much of a chance to explore their characters' relationship, the inklings of what is to come take root.
The two actors then went off to make other movies after The Avengers. Johansson starred with Joseph Gordon-Levitt in the indie romantic comedy Don Jon and voiced the sentient computer in the Spike Jonze sci-fi romance Her with Joaquin Phoenix, while Evans starred in the cool post-apocalyptic thriller Snowpiercer.
Then came Captain America: Winter Soldier and that's when things really started to spark onscreen between Johansson and Evans as their MCU alter egos.
“It’s nice for Chris and I to get to do dramatic work together,” Johansson once told the L.A. Times. “We work well together, I think, and admire one another as actors, and we’re used to being able to throw the ball back and forth because we’ve done that in the past in other films that we’ve done. We’re also older actors now and more comfortable taking our time. You can wait for the emotion to come and let the moment happen.”
11 CHRIS CROSSED THE LINE AND APOLOGIZED
Throughout it all, the two besties have always considered themselves more like brother and sister than anything else.
"She is a beautiful lady. I love that girl, man," Evans once gushed to Playboy (via OK!) about Johansson. "She’s like my sister. She’s just one of the smartest people I know. It’s great when someone with a razor-sharp intellect wants to have fun. A lot of my buddies who like to have fun are a little lowbrow, and that’s fun. It’s enjoyable, but you can laugh at only so many farts."
Johansson concurred when asked on a red carpet. “He's like the bigger, yet somehow younger, a little bit annoying but always charming brother.”
Evans once even got into a bit of hot water with his brotherly antics.
He and Avengers co-star Jeremy Renner were doing press for Age of Ultron when a reporter asked if Black Widow might have any romantic interest in either Cap or Hawkeye. He and Jeremy Renner chimed in, laughing and using misogynist slurs to shame Black Widow.
It was said in a joking manner, but the comments received some backlash, with fans calling out the actors for sexism and misogyny. They both publicly apologized for their insensitivity. Evans said in a statement to L.A. Times. "We answered in a juvenile and offensive way that rightfully angered some fans. I regret it and sincerely apologize."
10 THE SECRET BEHIND BLACK WIDOW AND CAPTAIN AMERICA
Cap and Black Widow as characters share a bond, which the actors felt really fit into their own close relationship and allowed them to show their mutual admiration and respect for one another.
"I think there's a functionality there,” Evans told Entertainment Tonight. “There's a void that they each fill for each other, and I think they've each kind of had to face a little bit of, like, a destruction of a belief system along the way. They've each leaned on one another for different reasons. I think in a lot of ways Cap certainly looks up to Black Widow. She's always been a little wiser, a little more experienced, a little more callused in the way the world really is… I think in the past couple of years before we pick up in [Infinity War], they've really kind of become this rock for one another."
“This character, because she’s this kind of reluctant superhero because she doesn’t have superpowers because she does have this really rich backstory that doesn’t just involve putting on a suit and turning into something else, she’s earned her scars,” Johansson said.
“Why I think their chemistry is so good together is they're very close friends,” director Joe Russo told L.A. Times separately. “They brought a lot of their own ideas to their scenes and a lot of personal energy to those scenes to create what we like to call a work wife/work husband relationship between those two characters.”
9 WHAT SCARLETT THINKS CHRIS SHOULD DO AFTER AVENGERS
Since Johansson has known Evans for so long, she can already predict what the actor might do once he hangs up his shield as Captain America (which he has said he's probably going to do after Avengers 4).
In W Magazine's “Screen Tests” series, Scarlett seemed to answer a question on whether Chris would be great in a movie musical.
“He's perfect to do a musical because he's so masculine and it's very rare,” she laughed.
Then she added that most of her male co-stars in the Avengers movies are just big ol' softies. “Male actors are very sensitive, so I don't feel like it gets to machismo. Everybody on the set, if you sing the opening line to Carousel, it will be followed by like five other actors singing in tandem.”
Evans actually has sung in his movies before. Like Johansson mentioned earlier, the two of them sang in A Perfect Score but he also did a whole musical number spoof with co-star Chyler Leigh and others in Not Another Teen Movie. Johansson also has a side career as a singer. She's released a few albums in the past, including a collaboration with Pete Yorn.
We're thinking Johansson and Evans should team up and do a musical together!
8 THEY KEEP CAP AND BLACK WIDOW IN THE FRIEND ZONE
In The Winter Soldier, it seemed like Steve and Natasha might actually go there and start up a real romance – even sharing an onscreen smooch. To be fair, the liplock was done so they could remain incognito, not like a real kiss or anything. Still, fans were crazy about these two.
“It’s not really defined,” Evans said to L.A. Times. “I think that’s what makes it more dynamic. It’s what makes it more similar to life. Not every single male and female bond is going to be rooted in romance. Sometimes movies make things too perfect.”
“But the chemistry is there, which is important,” Johansson added. “Just because they’re not romantically involved doesn’t mean that they’re not still attracted to each other as people. I like that the door is open a little bit.”
As we now know, a romance wasn't meant to be. Natasha ends up having the hots for Bruce Banner (played by Mark Ruffalo), while Steve has feelings for CIA Agent Sharon Carter (played by Emily VanCamp), the grand-niece of Rogers' first love, S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent Peggy Carter.
"I don't think a romance has ever really been in the air for these two," Johansson said to ET. "Sorry to disappoint. They have such a mutual respect for one another, personally and professionally, that I don't even think there's room for a romance in this. We've got a world to save."
7 THEIR PRANK BATTLES
The sign of a great friendship is to able to pull off a prank or two on each other. Scarlett Johansson and Chris Evans are no exception to this, especially Evans who really got Johansson good one time when she appeared on a segment of The Ellen Show.
Johansson was on the show in 2015, talking about their latest Marvel movie Avengers: Age of Ultron. The conversation she had with host Ellen DeGeneres was hilarious on its own. DeGeneres asked her about being the only woman with a bunch of male co-stars.
“Well, Lizzie [Olsen] and Cobie [Smulders] are in it, which is helpful,” said Johansson. “I also surround myself with an army of women to sort of protect me against all the testosterone. And we are talking about actors... they are very delicate,” which gets the audience laughing. “I mean [Chris] Hemsworth's hair takes much longer than mine.”
Then when DeGeneres started asking about Evans, Johansson said she knew him “almost too well,” as Chris sneaked up behind her – and scared the bejeezus out of her.
It was a classic best friend move, as Johansson was really surprised and Evans relished the moment.
Later in the episode, the two besties played a game of “Avenger? I Hardly Know Her,” to see how well they really did know each other. It was a hoot!
6 THAT ONE TIME ON THE USO TOUR...
Johansson and Evans had a blast doing a USO Holiday Tour in 2016, visiting servicemen and servicewomen who were stationed in Turkey, Qatar, and Afghanistan.
At the Bagram Airfield in Afghanistan, the two participated in a 20-minute Q&A, answering questions from the crowd, including some kids who were there.
One child asked if Evans and Johansson were friends in real life. "No, I can't stand her," Evans teased.
"Scarlett is honestly one of my oldest friends... It's nice in our business to have someone you can turn to, not just as a friend, but who can relate to the experience you're going through. Outside of the film, we are very good friends."
Another young boy asked if they could be another other of the Marvel characters, “would you want to be Iron Man or... what?"
"Well, not Batman!" Evans joked. "It's tough, because [Robert Downey Jr.]'s done such a great job. But as a Cap, you don't get to make the jokes. It was a lot more fun as [Fantastic Four's] Johnny Storm because I got to be funny. Cap doesn't crack the jokes, and it would be nice to be able to be funny sometimes. I would say...Iron Man."
Johansson replied, "Who would I rather be: You or Iron Man? That is an absurd question...Wait, do I have to be a superhero? I can be anything? I would be happy with the Terminator." (via E! News)
5 CHRIS HAS BEEN PUSHING FOR A BLACK WIDOW MOVIE
Johansson and Evans are always looking out for each other and supporting one another in their next endeavors, especially now that the Avengers movies are nearing the finish line.
As we mentioned, Evans has recently spoken about leaving the franchise for good. In a New York Times profile, the actor said, "You want to get off the train before they push you off."
Evans has been in favor of Johansson getting her own Marvel movie as Black Widow.
“[Johansson] is so good at everything she does,” Evans once told Elle. “She's played such a crucial part in the other films. She always makes her presence so felt—even when there are 50 different superheroes running around onscreen. I wouldn't be surprised if that happens at some point in the future. I'm sure Scarlett would be open to it.”
Now, it looks like it's going to happen. It was announced earlier this year that Marvel is in the beginning stages of a standalone movie centered on Natasha Romanoff's story. We know from some quick flashes in other Avengers movies that Nat has had a pretty dark past, so it should be a deep dive for Johansson.
She told ET, “I love playing this character, and I think there is definitely an opportunity to explore the Widow as a woman who has kind of come into her own and is making independent and active choices for herself probably for once in her life.”
4 THE BANTER IS TOO CUTE
Of course, one of the best parts of Johansson and Evans' friendship is watching them interact while doing press for their MCU movies. Their ease with one another is so evident and the two have developed a sort of short-hand.
Take for example this exchange in a video interview with Showbiz 411. When asked by the reporter about donning the superhero suits, Johansson explained there's about one week during the shooting of the movie in which every actor goes “rogue” and starts eating junk food like “chicken wings and doughnuts.”
Evans is laughing his butt off at her comment. Then he adds that they all have to suit up so the audience knows the “Texas switch,” meaning the choreography between the actor and the stuntman. The actors have to be in shape and prepared. Johansson is sitting there, nodding, but then asks Evans, “Is the Texas switch a poker reference?” Evans isn't quite sure and tries to explain what he's talking about, but she keeps drilling, “Is it an old Western term? But why is it the Texas switch?” Evans replies, “I don't know the root of it.”
Then the start to go off on an even further tangent when the reporter says Samuel L. Jackson keeps a small toy figurine of Black Widow in his pocket. This just launches Johansson and Evans into all kinds of back-and-forth banter. Let's just say we could watch them have fun with each other all day long.
3 THEY BOTH LOVE KIDS
If the two were ever to find romance, one thing is for certain – they'd be great parents.
Evans has said that on the Marvel sets, he's the single one but that he does want to settle down at some point. "I want to get married, though I want children – to me that's the ultimate thing," he told Glamour U.K. "When you're old and on your death bed, looking back at your life it's not going to be the films you've made or what you've accomplished, it's the relationships you have. You're survived by things that matter – the people you love and those who love you back."
Johansson actually has a young daughter who she shares with her ex-husband Romain Dauric.
She recently shared a great story with Ellen DeGeneres. “If you ask her what I do for a living, she says, ‘Mommy’s a superhero,'” Johansson laughed.
She continued, “We had taken a break in shooting Infinity War because it was an extremely long shoot. I was going into the office – I was not doing anything film related, I was like, ‘See you later, honey, Mommy has to go to work.' And she was like, ‘Who are you fighting?’ I don’t know if that’s a good thing, but yeah, she thinks I fight people for a living. If anybody has a regular uniform that they normally wear to work, mine’s a pleather unitard.”
2 THEY MAKE EACH OTHER LAUGH
As we mentioned, since the two friends have known each other for 10 years and have now made six movies together (four of them being Avengers movies), one thing has remained constant: their affinity for laughing all the time.
Scarlett once told Parade, “Even though the circumstances of our lives have changed and we’ve moved and our careers have evolved, he’s pretty much the same. We have the same kind of rapport between us, the same short-hand, he’s just as goofy and earnest as he’s always been. He’s got a lot of humility to him and a great sense of humor. I think Marvel was lucky to have that history between us so they can exploit it for the film!”
“I always say that if you were on a road trip, you’d definitely want Scarlett in your car,” Evans told Vogue. “She’s kind of always laughing, even when she’s in a bad mood.”
Want more proof? Here's another adorable video of the two of them on the Winter Soldier press tour, being asked by a British reporter from Empire magazine to do their close-up “cool” faces. Evans pulls off a pretty good one – and then does an imitation to the opening credits for Beverly Hills 90210. But Johansson just keeps turning and smiling hugely for her “cool” face. This just cracks Chris up.
1 SO JUST IGNORE THE DATING RUMORS... THEY DO.
Now we come to the persistent rumors that ScarJo and Evans are actually more than friends, speculation that has been dogging the two almost from the beginning.
The rumors really heated up last year, however, when Johansson divorced Romain Dauriac, and Evans split from girlfriend Jenny Slate. Suddenly, they were both single and seemingly leaning on each other for support during their mutual breakups. They were spotted out grabbing a bite or just hanging, and they were even spotted at the 2017 Oscars together, whispering and laughing with each other in the audience.
Plus, Johansson admitted she didn't like being alone. She said in an interview, “I’m learning now how to be alone just with myself. But it’s challenging. It doesn’t mean that I don’t feel alone at times or lonely, but I’m realizing that I’ve always had this other half out there.”
Many tabloid headlines splashed that they were finally dating and what a wonderful world it was, but alas, it just wasn't true. While reports say Evans and Slate are still toying with the on-again, off-again thing, Johansson has found love with Saturday Night Live head writer Colin Jost, with the two making their first red-carpet appearance last month.
As much as fans may want it, Scarlett and Chris are just going to be BFFs forever.
Any other secrets to Scarlett Johansson and Chris Evans' friendship we should know about? Let us know in the comments below!