When Marvel announced plans to release their own Spider-Man films, fan reactions ranged from ecstatic to skeptical. After all, these films would have to be really special to stand out from the other two recent Spider-Man adaptations, starring Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield. But, now that production for Spider-Man: Homecoming is officially under way and we're getting to know the film's cast and crew, it seems like we can afford to raise our expectations.
Recent images from the Homecoming set showed young actor Tom Holland hard at work as the film's lead. While some fans were disappointed that this most recent Spider-Man reboot would also focus on Peter Parker (instead of, say, Miles Morales), it looks like Holland will prove to be extremely capable in the role. One of the most exciting aspects of Holland's portrayal is how he incorporates his dance and gymnastics background into some insane stunts - which he teased in a set photo.
The 20-year-old uploaded a picture to Instagram that features him atop a precarious alleyway A/C unit. He used the caption to thank Homecoming's stunt coordinator, George J. Cottle. Take a look:
Cottle is a veteran in the world of action movie stunts, working closely with director Christopher Nolan. Cottle was a stunt performer on The Dark Knight and Inception before advancing to assistant stunt coordinator for The Dark Knight Rises. He made his stunt coordinator debut with Interstellar.
For all the actor's graciousness, though, Tom Holland doesn't need much help looking like a badass. The actor has used his dance and gymnastics background to his advantage on set, and a dangerous stunt even helped land him the role. Since, as Holland himself has mentioned, Marvel would rather actors avoid injury by not performing their own stunts, a detail like this may seem inconsequential. However, In an interview with EW, Civil War director Joe Russo explained why Holland's athleticism is vital to the role:
As important as it is to capture the essence of the character on an emotional level, there’s an incredible physicality to these characters. So to see a kid who is a gymnast, and you know you’re going to be digitally mapping to his movements…to have somebody who can move that way, it’s f—ing invaluable… That’s why everybody goes, ‘Well, yeah, we have to see that. If he can do that, that’s a whole other asset that he’s bringing, a whole other dimension that he’s bringing to the part.'
From mysterious set photos like this one to playful, acrobatic videos, stunts certainly seem to be one of Holland's favorite aspects of filming. It's only a matter of time before the young actor brings this latest, youngest version of Peter Parker to life, and finally bounds across the big screen.
Doctor Strange opens November 4, 2016; Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 – May 5, 2017; Spider-Man: Homecoming – July 7, 2017; Thor: Ragnarok – November 3, 2017; Black Panther – February 16, 2018; Avengers: Infinity – May 4, 2018; Ant-Man and the Wasp – July 6, 2018; Captain Marvel– March 8, 2019; Untitled Avengers – May 3, 2019; and as-yet-untitled Marvel movies on July 12, 2019, and on May 1, July 10, and November 6 in 2020.