The level of intrigue surrounding The Amazing Spider-Man 2 is at an all-time high, as fan curiosity has moved on from director Marc Webb’s teaser photos and some revealing set photos released online, to rumors allegedly being leaked out of Sony – particularly where the female cast of the film is concerned.
Today we have some additional “girl talk” surrounding ASM2, as well as some new rumors about how Chris Cooper’s Norman Osborn will fit into the sequel.
Needless to say – POTENTIAL AMAZING SPIDER-MAN 2 SPOILERS FOLLOW!!!!
FINAL SPOILER ALERT!!!!
Black Cat Revealed?
We’ll start with ladies first: Debate has raged in the last few days about the additional women that Peter Parker (Andrew Garfield) could soon have in his life. We learned that Mary Jane Watson’s (Shailene Woodley) small cameo role had been cut from Amazing Spider-Man 2, with the assumption that Woodley (The Descendants) would be brought back for the already-confirmed Amazing Spider-Man 3. After that, there was some confusion regarding franchise new addition Sarah Gadon (Cosmopolis), whom many fans thought was being positioned as a replacement for Woodley (however, that turned out NOT to be the case).
With MJ gone from ASM2, that left just one potential rival for Gwen Stacy (Emma Stone) to compete against: actress Felicity Jones (Like Crazy), who is playing a still-unnamed role that many fans have nonetheless speculated is in fact Spider-Man’s on/off love interest, Felicia Hardy, a.k.a. Black Cat.
In a recent interview with the Telegraph UK, Jones described her Amazing Spider-Man 2 role in a way that has fanboys buzzing:
“It’s TOP secret. I can tell you that she’s sort of on the baddie’s side, but I can’t explain much more than that.”
Any Spider-Man comic book fan knows that Black Cat started out as a thief who was attempting to break her father out of prison when she ran afoul of Spider-Man. After a career as a burglar and a stay in a mental institution, Hardy slowly but surely started to move toward the good guys’ side, and struck up more than one romance with the web-slinger.
The fact that Jones refers to her character as “sort of on the baddie’s side” certainly hints at that classic Black Cat story arc. In the comics, the character was also later submitted to a process that previously created animal-themed villains like The Scorpion and The Fly – which should be a clear indication of how her powers/origin could be modified to fit with the gene-spliced metahumans of the Amazing Spider-Man movie universe.
In short: At this point, if Jones ISN’T playing Black Cat, fans are likely to be disappointed…
New Green Goblin Rumors
The other big rumor surrounding ASM2 has been the introduction of the new Norman Osborn (Chris Cooper). Norman Osborn and his mega-corporation Oscorp have been placed at the center of the ASM movie universe – even though the character himself didn’t appear in the first film. With the casting of Cooper (not to mention emerging actor Dane DeHaan being cast as Norman’s son, Harry) it was naturally assumed that Norman Osborn would be a featured player in the sequel’s story – but whether or not Norman’s nefarious alter-ego The Green Goblin would be featured was less certain.
Well, in the last few days some big rumors have been spreading around the Net – rumors which not only detail when/where Green Goblin could be featured in Amazing Spider-Man 2, but also what he will look like, as well as details on how Norman’s tragic transformation will occur.
Movie Web ran a piece detailing an alleged sequence in Amazing Spider-Man 2 that sees Norman Osborn using “Spider-Man serum” to transform himself into the Green Goblin, via a strange gene-splicing chamber (possibly the one pictured above). In that same article there are accompanying set photos of the chamber in question, what might be an early mock-up of the new Green Goblin Glider, and a billboard that Electro (Jamie Foxx) zaps through when making his big debut. Check all of them out, below:
CBM and MW both go on to describe what the new Green Goblin’s look will be. According to the respective sites:
CBM: the suit will once again “resemble” some type of armor (though really, short of having him wear spandex or mutating him what other options are there?). We’re told it’ll be a matte black and dark green design with spikes — not too dissimilar to Ultimate Green Goblin’s look apparently, though obviously Osborn will still be human.
MW: We now have a more accurate description of Green Goblin’s suit of armor, and apparently the costume designers are taking both a nod from Tony Stark’s Iron Man and Christopher Nolan‘s Catwoman… Green Goblin’s suit will be made up entirely of matte black armor that resembles a hi-tech motocross suit. The suit will remain open-faced, and there will be no helmet at all. Norman will have green hair that is spiked high up. In his ears, he will be wearing a Bluetooth device that will make it look as though he has the Green Goblin’s signature pointed ears, the same way Selina Kyle’s goggles worked in creating the illusion that she had cat ears. The back of the armor has a spine. At the moment, there are no green accents. From a distance, you’d be forgiven for thinking that Tony Stark’s signature Mark XLII armor had been painted black.
MW also alleges that Osborn’s transformation into the Goblin will come at a climatic moment in the film, and that the Green Goblin will actually be “the big bad” that Spider-Man must battle at the end of the film. You can read additional plot info over at MW concerning how Peter’s parents will figure into the sequel’s plot, as well as other speculative details.
Personally, I was never a fan of James Franco’s Goblin armor in Amazing Spider-Man 3 – heck, it made our worst dressed villains list – and this description above sounds like just that. Additionally, CBM‘s claim that Norman ‘will still be human’ is also questionable, since in the Ultimate Spider-Man comics (which the ASM movies draw from), the Green Goblin is actually more like The Lizard (i.e., a gene-spliced monster). Given the storyline of these films, a non-human Goblin sounds more likely than what is described above; though, there is always room for the character to go through multiple stages of transformation…
Future Franchises & Villain Use
As we discussed on the World War Z episode of our SR Underground Podcast, we expect Amazing Spider-Man 2 to be “The Dark Knight” of the new Spider-Man saga. Do we mean that Marc Webb is going to start copying Chris Nolan’s cinematic storytelling style (i.e., dark and gritty)? No. What we mean is that the sequel will likely examine “escalation” in the same way that TDK did after Batman’s initial debut to the world.
What does Spider-Man’s debut mean for the world he inhabits? Well, in the first film Peter Parker provided Dr. Connors (and subsequently Oscorp) with a scientific equation that gave birth to a gene-spliced monster like The Lizard. Given the impressive powers that Spider-Man now has, it’s not hard to imagine Oscorp pushing Connors’ gene-splicing research to a new level, creating super-powered threats like Electro and/or Rhino as a way of discovering a cure for terminally-ill Norman Osborn.
This is a theory that is somewhat supported by the materials that Marc Webb has teased fans with previously – including that mysterious chamber that could indeed be the same one Osborn uses for his transformation, as well as the diagram of a genetically-altered spider sporting the tagline “Patient Zero,” which would suggest that Spider-Man’s origins are going to play a bigger role in the story of the sequel. That’s all to say: These latest rumors aren’t all that wild, when compared to other clues.
There’s also been speculation that actors like Felicity Jones and Dane DeHaan have been selected for key roles in the Spider-Man universe so that they may eventually be spun-off into their own respective franchises. For Jones, this would of course mean bolstering a Black Cat movie franchise, the potential for which has been somewhat proven by fan’s enthusiastic response to Anne Hathaway’s Catwoman in The Dark Knight Rises. At the same time, there has been a small hint of evidence that another sub-plot of ASM2 could see Dane DeHaan become the new Venom of the Amazing Spider-Man universe – which would tie into Sony’s continued development of a Venom movie.
No matter how the facts shake out, there’s no doubt that Sony is at least considering one of the pre-reserved dates for Amazing Spider-Man sequels as a point from which to launch a spinoff Venom or Black Cat movie. With Spider-Man serving as Sony’s major superhero movie tentpole, the studio is going to be looking at ways to expand the web-slinger’s universe into additional avenues of revenue. Black Cat and Venom could be the perfect way to do just that.
What do you think of all these latest rumors? Do you want a human or “beast form” Green Goblin? Should the major villain appear in ASM2 or in a later film? And how do you feel about a spinoff Venom and/or Black Cat movie starring DeHaan and/or Jones? Let us know in the comments.
The Amazing Spider-Man 2 will be in theaters on May 2, 2014.