It feels like it was only yesterday, but it was actually back in 2015 that Marvel Studios and Sony Pictures teamed up to find a new Spider-Man. For months, rumours swirled about who would swing into the Marvel Cinematic Universe as Peter Parker, and Asa Butterfield was a top contender alongside the eventual winner of the casting hunt, Tom Holland.
Butterfield suddenly dropped out of contention, though, leaving Holland, Charlie Plummer, and Matthew Lintz the apparent finalists. During a recent interview with Collider, the Sex Eduction star opened up on what it was like to miss out on being given the chance to be the next big screen Spider-Man.
"Every so often there’s a part [that you really want] and it’s a script you love, and you kind of put your heart and soul into it, and you don’t get it," he reflected. "And it is tough and it is shit, but I often find that something even better comes out of it at the end. And so in the case of Spider-Man, I did Sex Ed, because I wouldn’t have been able to do both of those at the same time."
Butterfield clearly isn't bitter, and seemed to hint that he delivered a very different take on Spider-Man when he was given the chance to audition for Captain America: Civil War.
"Tom did amazing things with Peter and he had an entirely different portrayal of him, and I think it’s worked so well in the universe and in that part, and I don’t think I could do it. So I think all things work out in the end."
It certainly would have been interesting to see what Butterfield could have brought to the table, but having seen Holland's version, it's hard to get too upset about the way things ultimately worked out.
What do you guys think?
For some leaked details on Sony's Spider-Man
spinoff, Silver & Black, click on the "Next" button below!
Silver Sable Vs. Black Cat
It's said that the movie was going to mostly revolve around Silver Sable - a bounty hunter for the U.S. Department of Justice - attempt to track down Felicia Hardy to bring her in to her paymasters.
In her past, Black Cat had volunteered to undergo an experimental surgery at the hands of Dr. Mendel Stromm (using his comic book alias Gaunt here) which would have seen A.I. tech installed in her body to give the master thief powers which would enhance her skill set.
It's unclear whether that means she was going to have Domino-style bad luck abilities, but it seems likely it was just Felicia's strength and speed which were going to end up being enhanced.
Silver Sable's Grudge
After gaining those new abilities, Black Cat escaped with her powers (which she wouldn't have entirely mastered at this point) and headed straight to the border for South America.
Silver Sable, meanwhile, would have been shown as having her own motivations for wanting to capture Felicia; Gaunt was responsible for the deal of her father, Ernst Sablinova, not to mention the torture and death of many of her fellow Symkarians (the anti-hero's fictional home country).
Sable's plan was to use Hardy to lead her back to Gaunt so she get her revenge on the villain.
The Wild Pack
If you've followed Silver Sable's comic book adventures, then you'll know all about The Wild Pack. This group of mercenaries have a storied history in the comic books, and were brought together by Silver Sable's father. In Silver & Black, Dominic Fortune would have been given a leading role, and worked with both Ernst and Sable before joining the U.S. Department of Justice.
Reunited with Sable under the direction of Agent Mark Sim, we were seemingly getting a version of the team here too, though the use of that character is particularly interesting as his comic book counterpart is known as Haechi, a NuHuman who first appeared in the pages of New Warriors in 2014. It's unclear how many other members of this group were set to appear, though.
Ties To Spider-Man's World
Given when Silver & Black was being made, there probably weren't any plans for the movie to tie into what Spider-Man was up to in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. However, this report explains that Sable and Fortune (potentially joined by a team resembling The Wild Pack) were set to team up to track down Black Cat, with the end goal being to take down Gaunt.
In order to achieve that, it's said Sable would have reached out to one of her contacts in the Tri-Border region of South America (an epicenter for organised crime): Dimitri Smerdyakov.
As you should hopefully already know, his alter-ego is Chameleon, a classic Spider-Man villain...
So, what exactly should we have expected from this take on the character? Well, he was reportedly a man on the run from his own past, and that he's got quite the reputation in the Tri-Border area for being a man in the know. Surprisingly, it doesn't sound like he was supposed to be a full-blown baddie, and was instead another mercenary who served as an ally to Silver Sable.
Chameleon was only going to have a handful of scenes in Silver & Black, but was set to help Sable find Felica, while showing off his skills as a master of disguise. Some will argue that he deserved more than this, but it sounds more like this movie was meant to serve as an introduction for the character, with a return planned further down the line in perhaps a sequel or different spinoff.
Scorpion And Tarantula
While all that was going on, more familiar faces from Spider-Man's adventures were set to appear.
Gaunt's plan was to add Felicia to his gang of surgically enhanced villains, and after she ruined that, he has Mac Gargan (Scorpion) and Anton Rodriguez (Tarantula) chase her down South.
As you might expect, they've both been enhanced, with Gargan wearing a full exoskeleton suit, and Rodriguez rocking a boot with some razor sharp upgrades. It does sound a little like they were just generic goons meant to chase her down, so expecting them to look exactly like their comic book counterparts may have been wishful thinking. It's hard to say for sure, however.
Black Cat obviously has a criminal past, and that means Gaunt isn't the only one after her.
Once upon a time, it seems Felicia Hardy crossed Lonnie Lincoln, a villain better known in the comic books as Tombstone. He's out to put an end to her, but only has what sounds like an extended cameo. Was it worth even including him? Well, once again, it seems this may have been Sony's way of introducing yet another classic character whose presence could be felt in future.
Luckily for Felicia, Sable find her first, and the duo then go on the run from, well, everyone!
An Action-Packed Final Act
With Silver Sable and Black Cat being pursued by Scorpion and Tarantula, they team up for what sounds like an action-packed final act which sees a set piece on a train among other big moments.
Tarantula ends up being taken out, but Scorpion manages to get Felicia back to Gaunt and takes great pleasure in torturing her after having his ass handed to him by the two female leads.
Teaming up with Fortune, Sable manages to infiltrate Gaunt's lab and gets her revenge after saving her newfound ally. Here's where things would have taken a very unexpected turn, though...
A Female Team Of Heroes
It's not specified how this came together, but Silver & Black was reportedly set to end with the two titular characters assembling an all-female team of heroes made up of Spider-Woman, Jackpot, Stunner, and Dusk. Described as a "female version of the Dirty Dozen," this was clearly meant to tease both solo projects for the characters and a future Avengers-style movie for them.
Casting this lot for a cameo and then locking them in for future films would have been a big undertaking. However, it's hard not to get excited about what a scene like this may have looked like.
Of course, the big question many of us had about the film was Norman Osborn's role...
What About Norman Osborn?
Fairly early on, the plan was for Norman Osborn to appear in Silver & Black. As much as fans want to see the villain clash with Spider-Man again, it's been done before, and Marvel Studios definitely appears to be intent on using bad guys who haven't been featured in previous movies.
In an early draft, Osborn was the one funding Stromm's work, while Charles Standish was set to serve as his messenger. The future Green Goblin, meanwhile, would only be seen, not heard.
However, once Marvel Studios seemingly started expressing an interest in the character, both Osborn and Standish were reportedly removed from the screenplay, so take that as you will...