Marvel and Sony have found their new webslinger in actor Tom Holland, but where a new Spider-Man is born, the supporting cast must be re-imagined as well. One major player can be crossed off the list of needed castings, as it's now being reported that Marisa Tomei (The Wrestler) has agreed to play 'Aunt May' in the upcoming reboot.
As the adopted mother of Peter Parker following his parents' death, it is May who helps instill the heroism and responsibility that's put to use when he transforms from boy to superhuman. And now that Tomei has been put in place, fans have a better idea of how that relationship will be portrayed in the MCU.
According to Variety, Tomei has been offered the part after negotiating with the studio. Tomei would follow Rosemary Harris (Spider-Man) and Sally Field (Amazing Spider-Man) in the role as May Parker in live-action films, and continue the trend of casting a younger actress in the part. Of course, Tomei marks the youngest version of May that most casual fans will have ever seen - which may be further evidence that Sony and Marvel are thinking long - long - term with this incarnation of the character.
Tomei may not have the established career of Sally Field, but aside from the My Cousin Vinny to her name, has offered a number of surprising dramatic and comedic roles in recent years. If actor Tom Holland was established as a frontrunner and tested with the likes of Captain America and Iron Man, then it follows that Marvel may have done their homework before arranging the deal with Tomei. [Update: THR reports that Tomei could appear as Aunt May in Civil War, alongside Peter, as well.]
The topic of conversation among fans - aside from 'how old' May Parker really has to be to do the character's history justice - is likely to surround her as-yet-un-cast husband, Ben Parker. The re-tread of the Spider-Man origin story criticized in The Amazing Spider-Man extended far beyond Ben's death (which forged Peter into a selfless hero), but it's safe to say that few movie fans would be pleased to see screen time taken up by yet another Ben Parker death scene (as good as his wisdom concerning "great power" may be).
Will Marvel, Sony and director Jon Watts take a page out of Zack Snyder's book and place far less emphasis on their iconic hero's origins? Considering that Uncle Ben's death actually follows soon after Peter begins to realize his powers, it may be that any Spider-Man origin must include it in some way - no matter how tired and anti-climactic it may be. If that is, indeed, the case, then Wattsm Tomei, Holland, and the actor cast in the part have a challenge on their hands, if nothing else.
More details or even an official announcement may be coming soon, considering all of the rumors surrounding Holland's role in Captain America 3: Civil War before debuting in his own film - Spectacular Spider-Man - in 2017.
We'll keep you updated, but for now, what do you think of Tomei's potential casting? Has Marvel set its sights on another strong addition, or do you see another actress in the part? Does this change your opinion on those old rumors of a solo Aunt May movie series?
Ant-Man opens in theaters July 17, 2015; Captain America: Civil War – May 6, 2016; Doctor Strange – November 4, 2016; Guardians of the Galaxy 2 – May 5, 2017; Spider-Man reboot – July 28, 2017; Thor: Ragnarok – November 3, 2017; The Avengers: Infinity War Part 1 – May 4, 2018; Black Panther – July 6, 2018; Captain Marvel – November 2, 2018; The Avengers: Infinity War Part 2 – May 3, 2019; Inhumans – July 12, 2019.