As it turns out, it was Peter Parker actor himself, Tom Holland, who helped usher in the peace between Sony Pictures and Marvel Studios that resulted in the two agreeing to once again share the movie rights to Spider-Man.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Holland reached out to both Disney CEO Bob Iger and Sony Pictures Chairman Tom Rothman on multiple occasions following the split in August. It was apparently after Holland's emotional appearance at Disney's D23 Expo that the actor began to put increased pressure on both parties to come to an agreement, which was ultimately reached at the end of September after he showed them the strong outpouring from fans.
"I am thrilled that Spidey’s journey in the MCU will continue, and I and all of us at Marvel Studios are very excited that we get to keep working on it," Feige said after the new deal was struck. "Spider-Man is a powerful icon and hero whose story crosses all ages and audiences around the globe. He also happens to be the only hero with the superpower to cross cinematic universes, so as Sony continues to develop their own Spidey-verse you never know what surprises the future might hold."
"This is terrific. Peter Parker’s story took a dramatic turn in Far From Home and I could not be happier we will all be working together as we see where his journey goes," added Pascal, who co-produced the first two Homecoming films through Pascal Pictures. "This has been a winning partnership for the studios, the franchise and the fans and I’m overjoyed it will continue."
The initial deal between Marvel and Sony fell apart after Disney reportedly asked for all future Spider-Man projects to be a 50/50 co-financing arrangement between the two studios, but the latter declined. Instead, Sony proposed leaving the current deal untouched, meaning Marvel would continue to receive approximately 5% of first-dollar gross while maintaining merchandising rights, which Disney refused.
Since then, some reports indicated a deal could still be reached between the two studios, while others declared it dead. In fact, Sony Pictures CEO Tony Vinciquerra even confirmed that "for the moment the door is closed" on Spider-Man’s MCU future. "We had a great run with (Feige) on Spider-Man movies," he added. "We tried to see if there’s a way to work it out … the Marvel people are terrific people, we have great respect for them, but on the other hand we have some pretty terrific people of our own. Kevin didn’t do all the work."
Nevertheless, after weeks of silence, this new agreement revealed Spider-Man will return to the MCU after all. However, not all the terms of this deal been made public, though Homecoming and Far From Home director Jon Watts is in talks to helm the third Spider-Man film.
What we do know is that under the new deal, Disney and Marvel Studios will reportedly "receive roughly 25% of the profits" from a third movie in the Spider-Man: Homecoming series of films. Along with Disney retaining merchandising rights, the agreement also states Spider-Man will also appear in a future Marvel Cinematic Universe film.
Directed by Jon Watts, Spider-Man: Far from Home stars Tom Holland, Samuel L. Jackson, Zendaya, Cobie Smulders, Jon Favreau, JB Smoove, Jacob Batalon and Martin Starr, with Marisa Tomei and Jake Gyllenhaal. The film is now available on Digital HD, Blu-ray and 4K UHD.
A third film in the Spider-Man: Homecoming series is scheduled to hit theaters on July 16, 2021.