Dust off your web-shooters and start humming that iconic theme tune - it is time to head back to the amazing world of Spider-Man movies. As part of the big superhero boom of the 2000s, Sam Raimi first brought the wall-crawling nerd to screens in 2002. Since then, there have been five more Spider-Man entries, an upcoming seventh, and various proposed spin-offs for Sony’s villainverse.
Spider-Man may now be firmly under the MCU umbrella at Disney, but with two whole franchises already under his belt, the world of Peter Parker represents one of the most rebooted superheroes out there. While everyone seems happy with where Spidey finds himself now, let’s not forget that there have been some great (and not so great) movies that came before Spider-Man: Homecoming.
While the six Spider-Man movies may be known for A-list talent like Tobey Maguire, Andrew Garfield, and Tom Holland, the supporting cast has been just as impressive. Stars like Willem Dafoe, Michael Keaton, and Sally Field have all played their parts across Raimi’s original trilogy and the two rebooted series.
As we enter an even younger phase for our friendly neighborhood hero with Tom Holland under the mask, let’s look back at who you might’ve missed in the previous entries.
With this in mind, here are 16 A-Listers You Completely Missed In Spider-Man Movies.
16 Dylan Baker - Raimiverse
Perhaps the biggest waste of potential in the entire Raimiverse was that we never got to see what Dylan Baker's Dr. Curt Connors could become. While Raimi had plans for the fourth movie that would see Connors' full evolution into Lizard, fans know that we sadly never got there.
Briefly mentioned (but never seen) in Spider-Man, Curt Connors got an expanded role in the sequels as Peter's physics professor.
Given that Baker has played a superb villain in the likes of Trick 'R' Treat, it would've been amazing to watch him turn from Parker's mentor to full-blown supervillain. The Lizard is famed in the world of Spider-Man and had some particularly great storylines in Fox's animated series from the '90s.
Both Baker and producer Richard Curtis wanted Connors to be the antagonist of Spider-Man 4, but he instead got rebooted with Rhys Ifans for The Amazing Spider-Man.
15 Octavia Spencer - Spider-Man
Spider-Man featured Octavia Spencer before she became an Academy Award-winning actress. To earn some cash, Peter took his homemade costume to a wrestling match, only to become a laughing stock. However, as the wannabe hero signs up for the match, did you spot Spencer as the check-in girl?
Mocking Parker's size, she spouts warnings that the company won't be liable for any injury caused to him, and although it is only a small part, she does what she does best. It isn't quite up there with The Help, but it is still a coup to say Octavia Spencer has been in one of your movies.
Just think, though: if Peter had listened to her words, Uncle Ben might not have been shot and everything would've been different.
14 Bryce Dallas Howard - Spider-Man 3
It's amazing what a blonde hair can do. Did you know that's Bryce Dallas Howard playing Gwen Stacy in Spider-Man 3?
These days, she may be used to running away from T-Rexs in heels, but back in 2007, she was running away from cranes in heels. In one of the threequel's most ambitious scenes, Gwen was knocked from the inside of a skyscraper, only to be saved by Spidey and seal the deal with a kiss.
Thankfully, unlike her comic book counterpart, Gwen actually managed to make it out of the events of the movie alive. While the natural red might be better suited to playing Mary Jane Watson, that title was already claimed by Kirsten Dunst.
Given that it is a toss-up between whether Gwen or MJ is Peter Parker's true love, it was a smart move to leave Ms. Stacy until Raimi's final movie.
13 Hannibal Buress - Homecoming
The dry comedic timing of Hannibal Buress made its way into the MCU's rebooted version of the Spideyverse in 2017's Spider-Man: Homecoming. As Tom Holland took over from the Garfield years, a host of new characters were introduced, as well as a whole faculty at Peter's school.
Perhaps we were too busy ogling Chris Evans' brief cameo as Captain America for the fitness challenge to notice that it was Buress playing Coach Wilson.
Later appearing for the detention scene, it looks like Coach Wilson isn't too fussed about his job at Midtown School of Science and Technology.
It also seems that Buress wasn't too fussed with his part.
When the comedian couldn't attend the Homecoming premiere, he paid "lookalike" Joe Carrol $500 to go in his place - and we were none the wiser. Coach Whiz Wilson appears in the comics, so we have to assume Buress is his MCU counterpart.
12 Daniel Dae Kim - Spider-Man 2
One actor among the stellar cast of Spider-Man 2 was Daniel Dae Kim. The Hawaii Five-0 star played science boffin Raymond in Raimi's second movie.
As a willing associate of Doctor Otto Octavius, Raymond was there to witness the death of Rosie and Octavius' transformation into Doc Ock. We don't know what happened to Raymond after the incident at the lab, but with the comics containing a science teacher known as Raymond Warren, perhaps Raimi had bigger plans for Kim.
Interestingly, this wasn't Kim's first Marvel movie - he previously played a small part in Ang Lee's Hulk from 2003. Best-known for his role of Jin on ABC's Lost, he will soon rejoin the world of comic books when taking over from Ed Skrein to play Ben Daimio in the Hellboy reboot.
11 Felicity Jones - The Amazing Spider-Man 2
We can only imagine what Webb had in mind when he cast Felicity Jones in The Amazing Spider-Man 2. The actress is something of a big deal now thanks to Rogue One, but she was surely set for greatness in Spider-Man movies as Felicia Hardy.
In The Amazing Spider-Man 2, Harry hired Felicia as his assistant after the death of Norman. Although Jones was only a bit part in the movie, everyone knows that Hardy's alias is Black Cat - the cat burglar who has more than a bit of a fling with Spider-Man.
Sadly, with Sony moving forward with a rebooted Black Cat spin-off, it looks like Jones' time has come and gone. However, never say never: we could easily imagine her slinking across the skyline to play Hardy again in Silver and Black.
10 B.J. Novak - The Amazing Spider-Man 2
With its shoddy storytelling and lackluster villains, it’s a close call on whether fans dislike The Amazing Spider-Man 2 or Spider-Man 3 the most.
However, at least Marc Webb's second entry had the scope to set up a much bigger Spideyverse. Alongside hopes of a Sinister Six spin-off, Webb littered the movie with various big names from the pages of the Marvel comics. Among them was The Office star B.J. Novak as Alistair Smythe.
Those up on their Spidey knowledge, will undoubtedly remember that Smythe is a major player in the comics. Usually found working for Kingpin, Smythe is a brilliant geneticist known for the blades jutting out of his shoulders and a dogged desire to kill Peter Parker.
However, in The Amazing Spider-Man 2, Novak's part was merely an Oscorp bully who was mean to Max Dillon.
9 Lucy Lawless - Spider-Man
Lucy Lawless may be best-known for playing the fearsome Xena: Warrior Princess, but her impressive CV also extends to Marvel. As part of the MCU, she played Isabelle Hartley in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., but long before that, she nabbed a tiny role in Raimi's Spider-Man.
Literally unrecognizable and just listed as "Punk Rock Girl," Lawless is sporting a bright orange wig and seen puffing a cigarette.
In the scene where the new reporter asks the public about what they think of Spider-Man, Lawless has only one line: “Guy with eight hands. Sounds hot.”
Raimi loves to reuse his favorite actors and Lawless is no exception. These days, she is back with Raimi to hack the dead to pieces in Ash vs. Evil Dead, but this is a great little Easter egg that she snuck into his first Spider-Man movie back in 2002.
8 Joel McHale - Spider-Man 2
Funnyman Joel McHale excelled at being he sleazy Jeff Winger on Community, but he was equally cringeworthy back in Spider-Man 2. One of the movie's best scenes had a dramatic bank heist involving Doc Ock, Spider-Man, and Aunt May.
While May is heading to the bank to ask for a loan to keep the house, an unhelpful Hale plays banker Mr. Jacks.
When Dr. Octopus and his mechanical arms stars causing mayhem in the bank, the coins soon start flying. Peter runs off to "leave" May and Jacks mocks her with, "oh that boy of yours is a real hero." In the same scene, as Mr. Jacks goes to pocket some money for himself, he soon felt the wrath of Aunt May when she slapped him on the wrist.
Remember your commandments, Joel - thou shalt not steal. Some people are just born to play a jerk, and McHale is one of those.
7 Elizabeth Banks - Raimiverse
Comic book fans will undoubtedly have heard of the name Betty Brant, and she even got a nod in 2017's Spider-Man: Homecoming. However, after being in all three of Raimi's movies, most will only remember the character as that girl who gave Peter his checks.
Played by Pitch Perfect's Elizabeth Banks, Betty Brant has a small role.
As one of the Daily Bugle staff, Brant serves as the receptionist to J.J. Jameson. By the time we get to Spider-Man 3, Brant has figured out how to take revenge on Jameson, constantly interrupting him with her intercom buzzer. Just like in the comics, she shares a flirty relationship with Peter which could've developed into an office romance.Speaking of love interests, Banks auditioned for the role of MJ but was reportedly told that she was "too old," despite only being 16 months Kirsten Dunst's senior.
6 Daniel Gillies - Spider-Man 2
Those Jameson boys are pure red-blooded Americans. Appearing in Spider-Man 2, The Vampire Diaries and The Originals star Daniel Gillies played John Jameson.
Known as the first man to play American Football on the Moon, Jameson becomes MJ's fiance after Peter messes up their relationship. Nothing is heard of Jameson after MJ ditched him at the altar, but you have to assume that he carried on a happy life without supervillains or radioactive spider bites.
Just like the comics, Jameson is a prominent astronaut. Unlike his cartoon counterpart, he doesn't turn into a werewolf. Interestingly, an abandoned plotline of Spider-Man 3 would've had Jameson returning from space with the symbiote on board.
Due to budget constraints, Raimi opted for the alien to crash onto Earth via meteorite, meaning that Gillies' part was ultimately scrapped.
5 Sara Ramirez - Spider-Man
Sara Ramirez sure loves being a woman in uniform. Before walking the halls of the Grace Sloan Memorial Hospital, a pre-Grey's Anatomy Ramirez cameoed as a cop in the first Spider-Man.
The actress made a name for herself during her 10-year stint at Dr. Callie Torres on ABC's show, but she had a big break in Hollywood thanks to Raimi
The whole movie hinges around the iconic death of Uncle Ben and Peter's transformation into Spider-Man, but did you know that Sara Ramirez's character was of the first to witness this monumental moment? After the wrestling scene, Peter pushes his way through a crowd of onlookers to find Uncle Ben bleeding out on the floor. It is actually Ramirez who plays the cop ordering the crowd to stand back and tells Peter it was a carjacking.
4 James Cromwell - Spider-Man 3
Hey, isn't that the farmer from Babe? Well yes, yes it is.
Hiding in plain sight in Spider-Man 3 was James Cromwell. Not only did Raimi's third entry bring with it Gwen Stacy, but her father also had a minute part.
Marc Webb's Amazing series had a much larger part for Captain George Stacy (played by Denis Leary), but here he was merely a minor background character. In fact, you wouldn't even know Cromwell was playing Gwen's dad if not for Eddie Brock's convenient line of “I’m dating your daughter."
Famed for playing Farmer Hoggett in the two Babe movies, Cromwell has also had parts in American Horror Story and the upcoming Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom. He has given some brilliant performances over the years, but sadly, there just isn't enough meat for him when playing Stacy in Spider-Man 3.
3 Macy Gray - Spider-Man
Casting pop icons in anything can either work amazingly or flop like a wet fish. Cher's many cameos in Will & Grace were a stroke of genius, but as for Macy Gray in Spider-Man? We'll let you decide.
In a scene that should've been dominated by Norman Osborn's Green Goblin outfit, even the gloriously hammy acting of Willem Dafoe couldn't draw attention away from Gray.
In the middle of Raimi's first movie, there Gray's atop a float, singing "My Nutmeg Fantasy". With Gray being something of a big deal in 2002, it turns out she was signed to Sony Music at the time, leading to a cross-promotion for the studio.
It is so odd to be pulled out of the fantasy of our web-slinging hero and into the real-world, but somehow, it is just so Raimi.
2 Randy Savage - Spider-Man
Further plumbing the depths of odd cameos, Randy "Macho Man" Savage stuck on some spandex for Spider-Man as Bonesaw McGraw. Also appearing in the likes of Baywatch's wrestling-themed episode, Dexter's Laboratory, and the diabolical Ready to Rumble, Savage wasn't exactly known for his acting talent.
Working with what he had, the former WWF wrestler brought the comedy to one of Spider-Man's most memorable scenes.
Mirroring the comics, Savage played a live-action reimagining of the character Crusher Hogan. In both worlds, Peter turned to amateur wrestling to earn some extra cash after his spider bite. While Hogan was easily quashed, Bonesaw McGraw put up a much better fight.
Known as one of the best professional wrestlers of all time, Savage sadly died of a heart attack in 2011, however, he will always be remembered for that iconic line, "Bonesaw is Reaaa-dddyyy!"
1 Joe Manganiello - Raimiverse
Forget playing Slade Wilson in Justice League, Joe Manganiello had a much earlier foray into the world of comic book heroes and villains.
While Tony Revolori plays a much weedier Flash Thompson in Spider-Man: Homecoming, Manganiello's high school jock was plucked straight from the pages of Marvel. First shown as MJ's boyfriend, Flash was also involved in the infamous cafeteria fight scene and excelled at being Peter Parker's school bully.
Manganiello may have missed out on Spider-Man 2, but if you look hard enough, Flash can be silently seen at Harry's funeral in Spider-Man 3. It is unknown whether Raimi would've used him again in Spider-Man 4 or beyond, but with at least another trilogy planned, there is every chance the director might have introduced an Agent Venom storyline.
For now though, we will just have to get used to Sony's current imagination of where to take the alien symbiotes.
Who is your favorite hidden Spider-Man star? Sound off in the comments!
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