Courtesy of Marvel Studios
Avengers assemble! Or well, Spider-Man.
The official title for Tom Holland’s iteration of high school superhero Peter Parker was released over Instagram on Feb. 24, but Holland and his fellow castmates had to toy with fans’ expectations prior to its formal reveal.
The prior two films featured repetition of the word “home.” The first film was titled “Spider-Man: Homecoming” and the second “Spider-Man: Far From Home.”
Cast members Holland, Zendaya and Jacob Batalon knew that fans were aware of this wordplay and joked with each other hours before the title’s release over Instagram.
Each actor posted a real film still alongside a mock title of the film. Makeshift titles included “Spider-Man: Home-Wrecker,” “Spider-Man: Home Slice” and “Spider-Man: Phone Home,” which referenced the iconic 1980s alien film, “E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial.”
Luckily for fans, the official Spider-Man film series Instagram account uploaded a post containing the trio that addressed speculations with a very tongue-and-cheek skit.
In the post, Holland is seen leaving director Tom Watts’ office. Zendaya and Batalon await him outside expecting to finally release the true title of the film.
Holland unfortunately is the bearer of bad news; they must deliver yet another fake film title. Though Holland was confused as to why the title was not revealed to him, Zendaya and Batalon were not.
“I feel like it’s pretty obvious that you spoil things,” Batalon said.
As the group walks away, the camera pans to a whiteboard with “Spider-Man: No Way Home” etched amid multiple other scribbled-out fake titles.
“This, we can confirm,” the account said.
The post also confirmed a hard-set release date for theatres: Christmas 2021.
The video amassed nearly 750,000 views in its first two upload days. But fans were not convinced.
Multiple commentators said they choose not to believe anything until a trailer is released.
“I feel like y’all [are] lying,” one poster said.
Another hummed a similar tune.
“When can we see the trailer?!” they asked.
Why are fans suspicious as to the intentions of the released video? Why would Marvel Studios choose to play with fans’ expectations?
Well, actor Holland has a major history of spoiling his own films, as Batalon noted in the teaser video. Especially if he is featured in them and especially if they are Marvel films.
SPIDER-MAN TRILOGY SPOILERS (2017)
Holland began his series of press tour no-nos in an infamous interview with French magazine AlloCiné. The interview is between the 50 and 85 second mark of the attached compilation video.
Months before the first film’s release, Holland slipped up to the magazine reporters and said he will not only star in one future Spider-Man film but two.
“There is a lot of room for Peter Parker, and Spider-Man especially, to grow in the next two movies,” he said. “He’s definitely not the finished article by the end of ‘Spider-Man: Homecoming.’”
That was news to the interviewer, who asked him to confirm that the two movies were upcoming.
“Yeah, well now you know,” Holland said. “I’m sorry, Mom!”
“AVENGERS: INFINITY WAR” SPOILERS (2018)
Due to Holland’s loose mouth, fellow co-star Benedict Cumberbatch often followed him on press tour interviews in weeks prior to the film’s release on April 23, 2018.
To put it lightly, “Infinity War” was Marvel Studio’s baby and is often seen as Marvel’s best-kept secret in recent years.
In an interview with the YouTube channel Magic Radio, Cumberbatch made no effort to beat around the bush. He was there to babysit Holland.
“I am here to filter everything he says before he says it,” he said. “I have that ability.”
He then motioned to cover Holland’s mouth.
Jake Gyllenhaal took to his role of caretaker for Holland too.
Gyllenhaal often interviewed with Holland during the press tour of the upcoming Spider-Man sequel in summer 2019. But that wasn’t the biggest spoiler released from the “Far From Home” era.
“SPIDER-MAN: FAR FROM HOME” SPOILERS (2018)
Here’s the video that arguably started it all.
Holland attended Ace Seattle Comic Con in June 2018 just months after the release of “Avengers: Infinity War,” a film in which Holland’s character dies.
Holland said he was disappointed to reveal nothing new about the upcoming Peter Parker sequel.
“I wanted to apologize because there’s no real revelations coming out about ‘Spider-Man 2,’” he said.
Holland did however reveal to his fans that he received his copy of the film’s script, but he might have revealed a little too much.
Just as he waves his tablet in camera-view, a title card visibly reads, “Spider-Man: Far From Home.”
Though fans were torn on the legitimacy of Holland’s epic fail, the post was a publicity stunt.
“Mr. Holland took it upon himself to leak [the title] for us,” Kevin Feige, president of Marvel Studios, said in an interview with Birth.Movies.Death.
ANY “NO WAY HOME” SPOILERS?
Yes and no.
In a February interview with Variety, Holland walked no line when it came to dropping hints. His lips were sealed, but he would never leave any interviewer empty-handed.
Holland said his expectations for the film were very high, and he expects fans to be blown away by its release.
He also mentioned that shooting for the film began late Dec. 2020 and picked back up the second week of February.
And on Feb. 23, one day prior to the title release, Holland revealed a memorable scene he will have with none other than his brother, Harry.
In the scene, Spider-Man dangles the “ecstasy-dealing” boy upside down. Spider-Man then gets into an argument with another character while the boy continues to swing back and forth.
“Being upside down is second nature to me now, so I know how difficult it can be,” Holland said. “So the beginning of the day I was making the takes extra, extra long just to see how long it would take before he blacked out.”
“In the scene, he gets flipped upside down,” he said. “Spider-Man flips him upside down and then he’s swinging back and forth while I’m having an argument with someone. He’s kind of swinging through [the] frame.”
Holland also denied any knowledge he had of guest appearances in the film from Spider-Man predecessors Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield.
“No Way Home” is one of many films Marvel plans to release over the next two years including “Black Widow,” “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings” and “Black Panther II.”
Joshua LeBerte is a sophomore studying news media. His column, “Josh’s View,” covers national pop culture items and runs regularly.