Recently, Tom Holland confirmed fan suspicions that Peter Parker was the masked kid at the Stark Expo who helped Iron Man take down a rogue drone in Iron Man 2. Director Jon Watts explains how this Spider-Man theory – which originated around the time that it was announced that Sony would be working with Marvel Studios – came to be official Marvel Cinematic Universe canon.
Watts recently chatted with Uproxx about the production and development of Spider-Man: Homecoming. He noted that in preparation to work on his own movie, he watched the other Marvel Cinematic Universe movies, and this is where the idea popped into his head:
“When I rewatched all the Marvel movies… I was watching all these other movies and being like, ‘What if that little kid at the Stark Expo was Peter Parker? In the Iron Man mask.’ Like, he’d be about the right age for that. And he loves Tony Stark. ‘Oh, what about after the Avengers battle, who would clean that stuff up?’ Because they mention Damage Control at one point in the movie. So it’s this thing where, because it’s not completely figured out, that you can just go back and basically write fan fiction for those movies, then the fan fiction becomes reality. A lot of the Easter eggs in this movie just started by rewatching the movies.”
The details about Damage Control handling the mess left after The Avengers specifically refer to the movie’s prologue, which explains how and why Adrian Toomes became the Vulture. When asked about whether or not Peter Parker’s retconned cameo would actually be addressed in the context of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Watts said that it’s a possibility according to Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige:
“I mean, I remember watching that with Kevin Feige and everyone and being like, ‘Does the math work on that?’ He was like, ‘It might, maybe.’ Then I found out that was Jon Favreau’s kid.”
So if it seems like this is a case of someone’s headcanon coming to life onscreen, that’s because that’s what it is in essence. Feige’s answers seem to be less definitive than Watts and Holland’s, so perhaps it’s not quite set in stone just yet.
Spider-Man: Homecoming swings into theaters on July 7, 2017. The film features a cast that includes Tom Holland as Peter Parker (Spider-Man), Robert Downey Junior as Tony Stark (Iron Man), Zendaya Coleman as Michelle, Jacob Batalon as Ned Leeds, Tony Revolori as “Flash” Thompson, Laura Harrier as Liz Allan, Marisa Tomei as May Parker, Jon Favreau as Harold “Happy” Hogan, Michael Keaton as Adrian Toomes (Vulture), Bokeem Woodbine as Herman Schultz (Shocker), and Michael Chernus as Phineas Mason (Tinkerer).