When the first trailer dropped for Sony's Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, fans assumed from certain shots that the elder Spider-Man mentoring Miles Morales may have been Tobey Maguire's version from the Sam Raimi films. Of course, the older Spidey voiced by Jake Johnson is from a parallel universe, but news has now emerged that Maguire was once considered for the role.
When asked by ScreenCrush if the possibility existed for Maguire to be the older wall-crawler, one of the film's directors, Rodney Rothman, said, "There was. There were many thoughts about where we could put Tobey Maguire and others. I think after this film, those thoughts might have a little more traction."
He added, "But before this movie, and introducing the idea of the 'Spider-Verse' to the audience, I think everybody was afraid that it would just really confuse people. But wow, it would have been fun."
When you think about it, the decision not to cast Maguire makes sense. With Maguire's voice as the older Peter Parker, many would have felt like this film followed the Raimi trilogy, with the third movie ending with his Spidey defeating Venom, the death of Harry Osborn and Peter on a rocky note with Mary Jane Watson.
Clearly, Sony didn't want to confuse the audience as Into the Spider-Verse was always meant to be a fresh story, but some will say Raimi's trilogy would have worked as a prelude to set up the older Spider-Man for a mid-life crisis. Nonetheless, given the fan reaction and positive critical reception so far, it seems the studio and creative team made the right move.
Directed by Bob Persichetti, Peter Ramsey, and Rodney Rothman, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse stars Shameik Moore, Brian Tyree Henry, Jake Johnson, Mahershala Ali, Hailee Steinfeld, Liev Schreiber, Luna Lauren Velez, Lily Tomlin, Nicolas Cage, John Mulaney, and Kimiko Glenn. The film opens on December 14.