Now that Andrew Garfield is set as the new Peter Parker, the search has begun for an actress to play the love interest – who will NOT be Mary Jane – in the Spider-Man reboot.

Director Marc Webb will return to the high school days of nerd-turned-superhero Peter Parker in his 3D Spider-Man movie, which will reportedly be significantly edgier and more “realistic” in nature than Sam Raimi’s blockbuster movies about the character.

The other twist in the new tale of the webslinger is that he will not be craving the attention of iconic, red-haired beauty Mary Jane Watson – at least not in the first film.  Whether the object of Parker’s desire will be Gwen Stacy (who was played by Bryce Dallas Howard in Raimi’s Spider-Man 3) or an entirely new character has not yet been revealed.

Mary Elizabeth Winstead (Scott Pilgrim Vs. the World) is reportedly one of the first known candidates who has officially dropped out of the running for the part.  Those who are rumored to still be contenders include actress Lily Collins (Priest), Ophelia Lovibond (London Boulevard), Teresa Palmer (The Sorcerer’s Apprentice), Imogen Poots (Fright Night), and Emma Roberts (Scream 4).

All of these actresses are up-and-comers that are youthful enough in appearance to be convincing in the role of a high schooler – by Hollywood standards, at least.  With the exception of Palmer, none of them bear too strong a resemblance to Gwen Stacy from the comic books, though one of them could end up dying their hair blonde for that (possible) role, much like Kirsten Dunst dyed her hair red for the part of Mary Jane in Raimi’s Spider-Man.

Nothing is guaranteed at this point and, when all is said and done, an entirely different actress might end up with the role.  The casting drama won’t reach the heights of Captain America but a final decision will likely take a few weeks, so strap yourselves in.

Production on the Spider-Man reboot begins this December, with a tentative release date scheduled for July 3rd, 2012.

Source: THR