Spider-Man 3’s already extensive cast list added a handful of unexpected names. In October, Marvel fans received the shocking announcement that Jamie Foxx would reprise his Amazing Spider-Man 2 role of Electro.
Later that month, MCU mainstay Doctor Stephen Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) joined the fray, reportedly acting as Peter Parker’s mentor figure. Come December, word got out that Alfred Molina appears to be reactivating his mechanical tentacles as Doctor Otto Octavius, AKA Doc Ock — a part he made famous in the 2004 hit, Spider-Man 2.
As if Far From Home’s cliffhanger hadn’t given everyone enough to think about, these bits of news only serve to muddy the waters. How could these iconic villains from separate continuities band together to battle a Spidey they’ve never met? The obvious answer is that the upcoming movie may focus heavily on the multiverse, a prospect that fuels speculation that the former Spider-Men, Andrew Garfield and Tobey Maguire, will don the red and blue spandex once more, alongside Holland, in a live-action Spider-Verse interpretation.
With nothing confirmed about their involvement so far, let’s take a look at the facts, and deduce what the odds of their return to the Marvel universe really are.
Garfield and Maguire’s comeback isn’t a done deal
It’s impossible to ignore how overt these cast additions are in their connection to a multiverse-based story for Spider-Man 3. Considering the smash success of the animated feature Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, it makes sense for Marvel and Sony to do the same in live-action soon, or, at least, hint to it a future possibility of it.
With the knowledge we have, uniting the three big-screen Spidey incarnations (probable thanks to Doctor Strange and his wizardry) seems an inevitability, but as thrilling as this sounds, we can’t put the cart before the horse.
The biggest mark against this dream team-up is that there’s no iron-clad press release announcing Garfield and Maguire’s comeback. At this point, it’s all hearsay based on Foxx and Molina’s involvement, with the implication being that if they return, so will their respective Peter Parkers.
According to Collider, by that logic, it stands to reason that Kirsten Dunst and Emma Stone will inevitably sign on as Mary Jane Watson and Gwen Stacy for Spider-man 3, too. That could happen, but it’s not a fact yet.
Also, it’s crucial to ask the question: do Andrew Garfield and Tobey Maguire even want to rejoin the Marvel universe? After all, both of their Spider-Man franchises ended because of circumstances outside of their control, and they each have their fair share of horror stories during production that they likely haven’t forgotten.
In recent years, Maguire has largely stepped away from the spotlight, meaning he might not be interested in working in front of the camera in any case. Garfield hasn’t expressed public interest in any further web-swinging since leaving the part behind in 2014.
Of course, much like those who believe Garfield and Maguire signing on is a given, this is just speculation. The two could be preparing for the comic book movie moment of the decade, or simply going about their lives, devoid of superhero-related thoughts altogether. The truth is, no one will know for sure until those at Sony or Marvel Studios say the word.
Spider-Man 3 releases on December 17, 2021.