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Elizabeth Banks Was Seen as "Too Old" to Play Mary Jane in Original "Spider-Man"

Elizabeth Banks has opened up about getting turned for the role of Mary Jane Watson in 2002's "Spider-Man," attributing the decision to being deemed "too old" for the role, at age 28.

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Speaking to Glamour UK about the casting decision, Banks revealed, "Tobey [Maguire] and I are basically the same age - and I was told I was too old to play her." Banks and Maguire are separated by 16 months in age. Kirsten Dunst, who was 18 in 2002, ended up getting the part.

Ultimately Banks expresses no malice over the casting decision, noting that it didn't really impact her career trajectory. "What I'm grateful for now is longevity...I was never a flavor of the month. I feel very comfortable that I will be working in this industry for a while."

Plus, losing out to Dunst wasn't a total loss for Banks -- she did get to play fan-favorite Daily Bugle employee Betty Brant in all three of the Sam Raimi-directed films.

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Banks' next major genre film, the "Power Rangers" movie -- in which she's playing the villainous Rita Repulsa -- hits theaters on March 24, 2017.

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