In the last 15 years, fans have seen two different iterations of live-action Spider-Man on the big screen. First portrayed by Tobey Maguire in Sam Raimi's Spider-Man, then portrayed by Andrew Garfield in The Amazing Spider-Man and its sequel. Now, a new actor will take on the role of Peter Parker in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Since the new version of Spider-Man was announced, it was clear Marvel was looking for a younger actor who would portray a high school-aged Peter Parker. Now, it seems Marvel may have not one, but two frontrunners to introduce Spider-Man into the MCU in Captain America: Civil War.
According to Devin Faraci of Birth Movies Death (formerly Badass Digest), Marvel has narrowed the finalists for the role of Peter Parker down to two 18-year-old British actors: Asa Butterfield (Ender’s Game) and Tom Holland (In The Heart of The Sea). The actors were on the rumored shortlist, which also included Nat Wolff (The Fault in Our Stars), Timothee Chalamet (Interstellar) and Liam James (The Killing).
The final two contenders for Spider-Man are Asa Butterfield and Tom Holland, I am hearing. It was down to 2 last week.
— Devin Faraci (@devincf) May 1, 2015
Shortly after the shortlist was revealed, it was rumored that Butterfield was the sole frontrunner to play Spider-Man. With the young actor's leading role in the sci-fi adaptation Ender's Game, he is the most high-profile of the group, though they are all relative newcomers. Now, however, it seems Holland is still a serious contender for the role.
It's possible that Marvel is looking at Holland because there may be a scheduling conflict with Butterfield and his other film, Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children. The Tim Burton-directed young adult adaptation - which also stars Samuel L. Jackson, who plays Nick Fury in the MCU - is currently filming. However, depending on when Miss Peregrine's Home wraps production, Butterfield could feasibly complete filming and move on to play Spider-Man.
Of course, it may also be the case that both Holland and Butterfield were always the frontrunners from Marvel's shortlist, perhaps with the studio leaning toward the latter because he is a little more established. That being said, Holland is on the rise and is set to co-star opposite Marvel's Thor, Chris Hemsworth, in In the Heart of the Sea later this year.
Still, we won’t know for sure which actor - whether Butterfield, Holland, or another on the shortlist - is truly the frontrunner until Marvel reveals the official casting of its Peter Parker. However, since Captain America: Civil War recently began filming, it’s likely we’ll know the next Spider-Man soon enough.
The Avengers: Age of Ultron is now in theaters. Ant-Man will premiere on July 17 2015, followed by Captain America: Civil War on May 6 2016, Doctor Strange on November 4 2016, Guardians of the Galaxy 2 on May 5 2017, Spider-Man on July 28, 2017, Thor: Ragnarok on November 3 2017, Avengers: Infinity War – Part 1 on May 4 2018, Black Panther on July 6 2018, Captain Marvel on November 2 2018, Avengers: Infinity War – Part 2 on May 3 2019 and Inhumans on July 12, 2019.
Source: Devin Faraci