Spider-Man: Homecoming, the first solo film for the wallcrawler within the MCU, arrives in theaters July 7. Coming Soon had a set visit where they learned about the setting for the movie, what makes it stand apart from the other superhero flicks, details about the Vulture’s origin, Zendaya’s character, and the films placement within the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Check it out below.
When the first Spider-Man movie came out there weren’t many superhero/comic book movies coming out on a yearly basis. Spider-Man was an event and broke the opening weekend record upon its release. These days it feels like nearly every weekend during blockbuster season contains a new superhero film. Some directors have even suggested “superhero fatigue” will soon set in where people are no longer interested in seeing yet another hero movie. So what makes Spider-Man: Homecoming stand apart from the many other options out there? What will make this feel fresh? Peter Parker himself, Tom Holland shared the following in an interview with Coming Soon.
“We’ve seen the Norse God, we’ve seen the billionaire, we’ve seen the soldier – now we get to see the kid. And one of the themes of the movie is what would a 15-year-old boy do with super powers? So the opening act to the movie, you see Peter really trying do discover who he is and what he can do, which is something I feel like we haven’t really explored massively in the previous movies… seeing Peter make mistakes and try to rectify them, and learn exactly what he can do. And that was something I was very passionate about, and I know Jon (Watts, director) was as well – and from the first draft that was always in the script.”
“It [Peter’s relationship with being Spider-Man] changes very drastically halfway through the movie. You see him really enjoying his powers, really getting to grips with what he can do and just experimenting throughout the movie. But then through a turn of events things happen, and it becomes a real serious matter. Then all of a sudden his powers become a bit of a burden, and it’s nice to play those two different feelings towards his powers.”
Director Jon Watts spoke about how one of the biggest differences Homecoming brings to the MCU is the perspective of a high school student with powers. Not only does Peter fight supervillains and interact with the other heroes in the shared universe, but he has to deal with the day to day drama of being in high school.
“The thing he remarked on which I thought was such a great takeaway was that everyone was exhausted,” Watts said with laughter. “That’s what I remember from high school. I remember being so tired. You’re waking up so early and working so hard and then doing so much homework and any extracurricular activities and you’re just exhausted all the time. So we made sure to keep some of that spirit alive just writing about being so tired. Like you’ve just woken up.”
“When you’re in high school, everything seems like the most important thing and everything bad seems like the end of the world. So if you have a zit or a girl doesn’t like you or you have to fight a super villain, those things when you’re 15 are all at 11.”
“I think one of the nicest things about his conflict with the villains in this is how different it is with his conflict with Cap and his side (in Civil War). Because that was kind of fun, he didn’t really know what was going on, and you don’t see the Avengers as people who are dangerous. But here the Vulture is definitely a formidable opponent, and he is terrifying. His suit is absolutely terrifying. So the banter picks up a little bit in the beginning, but as soon as Peter realizes he’s a little bit out of his depth, there comes a real battle. And it’s less about making quick jokes and being funny, and more about saving the day and making sure he does the right thing.”
What does that mean for potential Spidey sequels? Will he remain in high school in the films or quickly move on like the previous iterations?
“We really want to do multiple movies where he’s in high school,” producer Eric Carroll told us on the set.
“Going forward we would definitely treat them all as the same slate. So we would be as strategic about where future Spider-Man movies fall in the MCU of it all as we would if Sony weren’t involved, because there’s nothing in it for us or Sony to put a movie out at the wrong time or start confusing the continuity.”
“We want to tread lightly with what’s been done in the past films as far as The Osbornes and things like that. So I don’t think we’re going directly down that route. We figured honestly if there was a way to do this movie without mentioning anyone who has been in past films, with the exception of staples like Flash Thompson and Aunt May, that that might be a good thing to do.”
They’ve discussed previously that Homecoming is going to have a John Hughes vibe to it. Producer Eric Carroll spoke about how one particular character introduced in Homecoming fits the mold of a character in Hughes’ Breakfast Club. He also addressed some of the controversy and mystery surrounding her character.
“I can tell you that Zendaya is playing a character named Michelle, and that I promise you when the movie comes out her name is Michelle.”
“They’re usually wrong, so it’s really fun to watch people respond to all these incorrect rumors and reveal a lot of other things that they think might be going on,” director Jon Watts said with a laugh. “It’s like being a magician because you’re like ‘Nah, nah, nope. Oh? Close! Nope, wrong again.’ Then every once in a while someone will have a crazy theory or a weird idea and then you’re like ‘Oh, that’s pretty cool. Can we do that? Is it too late? Can we figure out a way to write that in?’ I love it.”
Spider-Man himself, Tom Holland added the following:
“This whole, you can’t cast someone who’s not of the right race for a character and such, I really feel like we’re breaking through and changing that. And Z is perfect. She’s so strong willed, it’s not going to shake her at all. “Michelle is a very interesting character,” he said. “We’ll be doing a scene with all of the other cast members, and then she’ll sort of pitch in and we’ll be like, ‘That was a strange thing to say,’ and then we’ll continue on with our dialogue. It’s a very fun character, and Z has really brought a lot of herself to the character.”
Director Jon Watts spoke of what Zendaya’s Michelle adds to Spider-Man: Homecoming and who she could be compared to from former high school films:
“I always thought of her as being a version of Ally Sheedy in The Breakfast Club, what Linda Cardellini is like in Freaks and Geeks, it’s just a cool character and it’s cool for her to be that character. She has a really cool wardrobe, really funny, lots of literary nods. I like the idea that she’s a real reader and bookish. She always has a big pile of books she’s carrying around, which I picked and obsessed over.”
Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige shares how Zendaya surprised him during her screentest and adds that he didn’t even know who she was before the audition.
“When Kevin and I looked at her screen test… oh god, maybe I can’t say this… we didn’t know who she was! There was this girl, she was the most gorgeous thing I’ve ever seen and we were like looking at it and she was so fine and so smart and savvy and poised and she had no make-up on… and we just looked at it after we shot it and we were like, ‘She’s really fine,’ and they were like, ‘She’s really famous.’ But she’s been blowing us away every day.”
“I knew of her, but I knew that she was on K.C. Undercover,” Watts said. “It was funny because then you Google her and you see she’s a cover girl and is so glamorous. She just came in and read on tape for just whoever because we were doing open readings, and she was so different than what I think anyone expected and was just really down to Earth and really relatable.”
The biggest reason I’m excited about Spider-Man: Homecoming is because it will be the first Spider-Man flick connected to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Where does this movie fit into the overall continuity and how does Spider-Man differ from the many characters already introduced? Coming Soon discovered that not only will Homecoming give us our first look at a teenage hero in the MCU (the other characters are all established men and women), but that the timeframe will actually jump around to show us the MCU through Peter’s eyes.
“The film literally begins in the shadow of Stark Tower, now with its trademark “A” still hanging on. Michael Keaton’s Toomes has arrived with his boys to begin the clean-up process, a nice little contract he’s picked up for his salvage business, only to be stopped by the Department of Damage Control (a nod to the classic Marvel comic series) who are taking over the clean up and send Toomes away.
Following that, and the Sony and Marvel logos, things will jump into the middle of Civil War, just after Tony Stark has recruited Peter to his side of the fight. A montage will show Peter’s exploits in leaving New York, riding on a private jet to Germany, and taking place in the big airport fight. We’ll also see what he did right after that, hanging around in Europe… literally, as he explores the world in his brand-new Spider-Man suit.”
Executive producer Eric Carroll shared what makes this movie different than the others we’ve seen so far.
“All the other movies so far, take place in this weird penthouse level. Where you’ve met this alien royalty, and Tony Stark, who very literally lives in a penthouse. (Spider-Man) is a guy who grew up in a world where all these characters are real. Seeing it from the ground, what is that like? How is that different?”
What about the villain? Superhero movies are sold on the strength of their villain as much as they are on their heroes. What can we expect from Michael Keaton as Adrian Toomes/Vulture? How does this character fit into the MCU and what differences are there from his comic counterpart?
Producer Eric Carroll stated:
“He is a businessman with a family and he wants to look out for him and his,” producer Eric Carroll says. “He has a Tony Soprano mentality, he doesn’t have these big delusions of grandeur where he wants to take over the world or replace the government or even defeat The Avengers or anything, he just wants his shot at the good life.”
“He thinks it’s not fair that someone like Tony Stark can make a fortune selling weapons and find the light, turn away from that and be looked upon as a hero, and then even worse help found the DoDC and get paid to help clean up the messes he makes,” Carroll says. “He’s like ‘It’s rigged man!’ He’s one of those guys.”
“He is somewhat of a victim. He takes things in that he feels like a victim, and some of it is justified actually. He believes that there’s an upper echelon of society of people who are getting away with a lot and have everything. And there’s a whole lot of folks who are working hard, and don’t have much. Does that sound familiar? To anybody, given the political climate? Which I think is an interesting way to go about this.”
Where did his equipment/suite come from for the film? Carroll provides the following information about its origin.
“That gauntlet, you’ll recognize from the beginning of Civil War, it’s what Crossbones is using to kick the sh*t of Cap in that prologue. They scavenged it from the battle in Lagos and made a couple of upgrades, so that it’s not a pneumatic punch machine, it also delivers a pretty hefty jolt when it connects as well..”
“One of the things when we landed on the Vulture being the bad guy, we wanted to make sure it wasn’t just evil Falcon, or another guy with a backpack with wings on it. So we felt one of the cool ways to do that was to make this more of a vehicle than a costume. This thing is something like 32 to 36 feet wide. It’s a small plane. It’s not a backpack he puts on and wings pop out. It’s a thing that rests on a gantry that he has to step and clip into, and it is massive.”
That’s where the Tinkerer comes in. Keaton’s Toomes may be a scavenger and criminal, but the Tinkerer is the one with the know-how to create the weapons. Keaton elaborates on this relationship in the movie.
“They are just his boys, you know? I really like the relationship with the Tinkerer–with Michael (Chernus)’s character–it’s great. He’s real funny, so we goof around a lot and make up very, very funny backstories. They’re funny, but then you think, ‘Well, that’s probably their relationship. They probably get on each other’s nerves sometimes.’ I have a lot of the ideas and then I just say, “Go make that. Go make that for me. I want to have a thing that does all this stuff. Just go make that stuff for me.” And he’s great. I’m having a lot of fun in that relationship.”
Lots to take in huh? I really have my fingers crossed for this one because Spider-Man has always been my favorite superhero. I’m hoping that this film can catapult him back to the upper echelon of heroes in the public eye, a spot he lost following the weak reception of the Amazing Spider-Man movies and the huge success of the MCU.
What do you think? Are you looking forward to Spider-Man: Homecoming? Share your thoughts in the discussion board below. Homecoming swings into theaters July 7, 2017.