Image Credit: Marvel
Two of the biggest stars of Spider-Man: No Way Home originally made their first appearances in the film in completely different circumstances. In an interview with Variety, No Way Home writers Erik Sommers and Chris McKenna stated that the original draft of the script included both Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield’s respective Spider-Men right after Aunt May, Marisa Tomei’s deaths.
“They’re brought in by a Marvel character who says, ‘Here’s the rescue and they’ll help you get through this,'” McKenna said, although he didn’t specify which character machine.
Those introductions didn’t change until No Way Home was doing well in production, which began in the Fall of 2020 when Sommers and McKenna realized they needed something better in terms of history.
The Marvel Cinematic Universe came under a lot of pressure. “We changed history a lot,” said McKenna. “We’d been in production for two months. And now we had to make another hit in the third act, which we hadn’t done.” I had time for it because we were doing act one and act two.
The authors finally rewrote the sequence during Christmas 2020, which led to the scene now in the final cut of the film: Garfield and Maguire first meet Jacob Batalon’s Ned and Zendaya’s MJ, after which Ned accidentally opens a portal to the two alternative Peters is looking for his friend (Tom Holland).
The two spider-men can still be seen after Aunt May’s death, but now in a different context. “It was a ray of hope in the dark,” said McKenna.
“It was a gift, especially at this point in the writing process, to write for these two characters. It was the darkest part of the year, the darkest part of the production, the darkest part of the story unfolding, and it was like Oh, Tobey and Andrew.
In a separate interview, Sommers described Aunt May’s death as the critical “Uncle Ben” moment for Holland’s Peter Parker, whose trauma cemented the relationship between the three Spider-Men in the film.
They are finally crystallizing out for these three guys who are the same, who are brothers, “he said. And that they are cosmicly united by something and that sharing those words seemed the best.