The whole world (wide web, at least) was convinced that Emma Stone would play Mary Jane Watson in Spider-Man, but they were wrong. In fact, it’s looking very likely that nobody will be playing MJ in Sony’s upcoming relaunch of the Marvel property.
The Hollywood Reporter’s rundown of Stone’s casting as Gwen Stacy pauses for a brief moment to inform readers that MJ’s participation in the Marc Webb-directed reboot is far from certain. The reliable Borys Kit writes:
The casting process reportedly involved looking for actresses for both Gwen and Mary Jane, and Columbia was into Stone — a favorite after starring in the studio’s “Superbad,” “The House Bunny” and “Zombieland” — for both roles. But as the search elongated, it decided to focus on casting Gwen, the more important role.
Sources said Mary Jane will not appear in the first movie, so a Gwen story line could provide an extra dose of gravitas, depending on how closely the studio and filmmakers hew to Marvel Comics lore.
If Kit is right, then MJ doesn’t have a seat at the table when Andrew Garfield swings into theaters as Peter Parker in 2012. What that also means, potentially, is that the remaining rumored actresses might not have any part to play in the Spider-Man reboot, unless that second fabled female lead is a different character altogether.
Oh, and that bit about Gwen Stacy adding “an extra dose of gravitas?” Kit has more:
In the comics, Gwen was Parker’s first love but died in a fight against the Green Goblin. The studio is not expected to have Green Goblin as the villain in order to distance itself from the previous trilogy (Philip Seymour Hoffman is on the shortlist for the new villain role), but it doesn’t preclude a similar story line to pack dramatic punch.
I certainly hope that Sony pulls the trigger on Gwen when the time is right, though I’m curious about whether or not she’ll survive the first film or two before getting tossed off the proverbial (and, well, literal) bridge. But would you be okay with Gwen dying at the hands of someone other than the Green Goblin? And who the heck do they want PSH to play?