‘Spider-Man: Far From Home’ Writers On Why Jake Gyllenhaal’s Mysterio Had That Tony Stark Connection

Marvel Studios and Sony’s Spider-Man: Far From Home, the second solo outing for Tom Holland’s wall-crawler, had a lot to live up to in the eyes of fans even before the first trailer for the film debuted. Not only would Spider-Man: Far From Home mark the first live-action appearance of Mysterio (Jake Gyllenhaal), a classic Spider-Man villain fans had been eager to see on the screen since Sam Raimi’s films, it would also be the first entry in the MCU to take place after the universe-changing events of Marvel Studios’ Avengers: Endgame.

To bring back the humor of the previous Spider-Man film while acknowledging the weight of the devasting losses in Avengers: Endgame, Marvel Studios and Sony enlisted Homecoming co-writers Chris McKenna and Erik Sommers to pen the script for Far From Home. Over the course of the writing process, McKenna and Sommers worked closely with the Marvel and Sony team to develop a new version of the villain Mysterio, played by Jake Gyllenhaal, who fans recognized from the comics while adapting the outlandish character for the Marvel Cinematic Universe. During a conversation with Heroic Hollywood, McKenna and Summers discussed why they felt the story came together perfectly after it was decided to tie the origin of Jake Gyllenhaal’s Mysterio to Tony Stark, the Aunt May and Happy Hogan summer fling, the surprise cameo appearance in the mid-credits scene, and why they find the idea of using Kraven the Hunter as the next Spider-Man an appealing challenge.

How early on in the writing process were you guys aware of the outcome to Avengers: Endgame? Was it something you guys knew all about from the beginning or did you have to incorporate those story elements later on in the process?

Erik Sommers: We knew very early on what the outcome of Endgame would be. You know, Marvel does a great job of keeping some pretty secrets, but they definitely let us know what we needed to know in order to make this movie.

Having the film be a lot about Tony Stark’s passing and how Peter Parker deals with that… was that a story you guys wanted to tell right from the get-go or when you received the information about his fate in Endgame, was that really the beginning of where you started to map out the story and really flesh it all out?

Chris McKenna: Once we were told what happened at the end of Endgame, we knew that it would have an effect early in the plot of our movie, but really on the emotional and existential response of Peter. I mean, this is his father figure. He’s the one who brought him into the Avengers, became a mentor, and his passing… we knew we wouldn’t be able to just brush it off. We knew that there was gonna be emotional fallout from it. So, we had to be true to the relationship that had been built up through the other movies. You know, we were given the mandate, ‘look, we’re coming off a really, really heavy movie, let’s have fun. As much fun as possible.’ But it seemed like it was unavoidable that it would have to deal with coping with the loss of Tony.

So, you know, the first half of that was a lot of ‘oh, let’s have fun!’ He’s kind of in denial and he’s running away from his problems. He’s running from his responsibilities, running away from the mantle that he feels everyone is expecting him to live up to. Then things start crashing down because he hasn’t really processed and dealt with everything that’s happened.

I felt the romantic dynamic between Aunt May and Happy Hogan was something that worked out really well. How did you guys come up with that pairing and what was appealing about exploring that for you guys? 

Chris McKenna: You know, it was something that we came up with early in the breaking of the story because we knew that we had access to Favreau and Happy. We had May. And we thought it would be fun to put them in scenes together and we thought a possible romantic spark between them could be a fun dynamic. Part of what’s so fun about Peter is the universe is constantly throwing obstacles and problems in his path and it’s so fun, particularly with Tom, to watch him cope with, for lack of a better word, sh*t raining down on him. It’s so great watching him scramble, and react to things, and we thought that would be yet another thing to throw in his path. And now he has to deal with this guy that he works with now having a relationship with his aunt. We thought there would be great comedy to be mined there. 

I also loved your take on Mysterio and how he was very much like the character we know from the comics while incorporating a lot of things from the previous MCU films. So, I was wondering how you guys came up with this new origin for the character and why did you feel it was important to tie Mysterio’s past to Tony Stark?

Erik Sommers: Mysterio was a very challenging villain looking at the source material, where he’s got springs on his feet, or he’s gluing furniture to the ceiling, or things like that. We were trying to think of how do we modernize this guy? How do we make the most fun, satisfying version of this guy, and we went down a lot of roads. We sat in a room with the director, Jon Watts, and folks from Marvel, folks from Pascal Pictures, and spent a lot of time discussing various versions of Mysterio and motivations and everything. But in the end, we came back to sort of who he is in the source material, this guy who is always trying to trick Spider-Man, and it was just a matter then of trying to figure out what mechanism he would use to do that. 

Chris McKenna: Every time that we lean towards anything that has an interpersonal relationship, a history in the MCU, it always feels like we’re on more solid ground. It feels like we have a better story that we’re weaving together. So, when we decided that we would do the B.A.R.F. technology it felt logical that then, well, if we’re using the B.A.R.F. technology he must have some sort of connection to Tony and if he has some sort of connection to Tony he, therefore, has a connection to Peter. There’s an element, clearly, of jealousy that Tony never gave back the recognition and respect that he felt he deserved. So, there is a personal element when he sees that not only has Tony handpicked Peter to be his protege, but also, he’s handed over this billion-dollar, global security system and essentially crowns him. Once we started playing around with those ideas it all felt like it was a better story. It was a nice intertwining of three characters that all have a relationship with one another. 

Erik Sommers: Once we sort of landed on that, as Chris said, it just started to feel right. Here’s Peter, who deserves to take over and play this larger role but doesn’t want to, and then you have Beck, who desperately wants to but doesn’t really deserve to and shouldn’t, frankly. It just started to feel really right.

I’ve had a few conversations with people and seen some chatter online about Mysterio’s fate, with some people thinking that it’s possible he’s still alive. It seemed to me like you guys were trying to make it clear that he really was dead, but was it your intention to leave the door open for a possible return by Mysterio? 

Chris McKenna: With Marvel, I would never rule anything out and honestly, I don’t know if Marvel or Sony have other plans or not. So, I can’t speak for them. God knows there were a lot of discussions about how we wanted to end it with Mysterio. Do we want to keep the door open or not? The fact that people are talking about whether the door’s open or not… I don’t know what Sony and Marvel’s plan is, but I’m excited to see what they’ll do.

The post-credits scene was also another highlight. When you guys were writing it did you know that J. K. Simmons was going to come back to play Jameson or did you have to write it knowing there was a possibility someone else could be in the role? 

Erik Sommers: Early on, we got the sense that there was a lot of excitement within the creative team about the possibility of bringing back J. K. Simmons and we thought it was a great idea. I’m not sure exactly when it was finalized or anything like that, but we didn’t really allow that to affect the way we write J. Jonah. What affected the way we wrote him was the decision to take the Daily Bugle from a standard newspaper, and sort of update it to a more modern media landscape, and tweak it, and make into this more sort of InfoWars type of website.

I’ve read that you guys have expressed that you do love Kraven the Hunter and I was wondering, did you have any particular storyline from the comics or maybe a combination of stories that you would love to see told on screen? 

Chris McKenna: I mean, Kraven’s Last Hunt, obviously, is such a great story. I don’t know if there’d be elements of that we could use. It’s so wild and fun. Him taking on the role of Spider-Man is so fun, but I don’t know. I think one of the great things the MCU does is they really are able to modernize and ground villains that oftentimes could be broad and larger than life because they’re in comic books, particularly the earlier ‘60s and ‘70s ones. Which we love, but it’s always about translating that to a modern screen. I think we love the idea of Kraven as someone who could just be a ruthless, a very ruthless, assassin. 

There are so many great characters. Mysterio, though, definitely felt like, at the time, we kept coming back to him because he’s so iconic and obviously such a challenge. Because I think a character like that could’ve gone off the rails pretty easily. So, we enjoyed the challenge, all of us, the whole team. We worked very hard to figure out how to ground that character. And so, any of the characters, if you were gonna do Kraven or Spot, I think it would just be fun to try to tackle any of those characters in a way that we could believe them so that we understand their motivations. Like Marvel has done so well with all of their villains.

Erik Sommers: I don’t have a specific Kraven storyline in mind, but he’s just such an iconic villain. He’s someone I remember being a huge fan of when I was a kid. So, anyway that we could potentially modernize him and work him into the world of Spider-Man in this new context would be super fun. I hope we get a chance to do it sometime.

Are you hoping we haven’t seen the last of  Jake Gyllenhaal’s Mysterio? Would you like to see the Spider-Man: Far From Home writers bring Kraven the Hunter to the big screen? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!

Following the events of Avengers: Endgame, Spider-Man must step up to take on new threats in a world that has changed forever.

Directed by Jon Watts from a script written by Chris McKenna and Erik Sommers, Spider-Man: Far From Home stars Tom Holland, Jake Gyllenhaal, Zendaya, Jacob Batalon, Tony Revolori, Martin Starr, Numan Acar, J.B. Smoove, Oli Hill, Remy Hii, Marisa Tomei, Michael Keaton, Jon Favreau, Cobie Smulders, and Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury.

Spider-Man: Far From Home is now playing in theaters!

‘Spider-Man’ Concept Art Reveals Alternate Suits For Jake Gyllenhaal’s Mysterio

Previous1 of 7

pider-Man Far From Home Jake Gyllenhaal MysterioNew Spider-Man: Far From Home concept art reveals alternate costume designs for Jake Gyllenhaal's Mysterio.

Marvel fans have been clamoring to see Mysterio in a live-action film ever since the release of Sam Raimi's first Spider-Man movie. Nearly two decades later, Mysterio finally made his way into a Spider-Man film with the release of Marvel Studios and Sony's Far From Home, with Jake Gyllenhaal portraying the classic Spidey foe.

While the writers incorporated elements of previous Marvel Studios films for the origin of Jake Gyllenhaal's Mysterio, this take on the character was largely faithful to the source material, especially in terms of the villain's costume design. However, new concept illustrations reveal alternate designs for Jake Gyllenhaal's Mysterio suit were considered, some of which are notably different from the comic book outfit with entirely different color schemes.

You can check out the first concept illustration of Jake Gyllenhaal's Mysterio costume below and click "next" to view the rest of the gallery.

Spider-Man Jake Gyllenhaal Mysterio

What do you think of these concept designs? Which alternate costume design is your favorite? Would any of them be a better suit for Jake Gyllenhaal's Mysterio? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section below!

Here is the official synopsis for Spider-Man: Far From Home:

Following the events of Avengers: Endgame, Spider-Man must step up to take on new threats in a world that has changed forever.

Directed by Jon Watts from a script written by Chris McKenna and Erik Sommers, Spider-Man: Far From Home stars Tom Holland, Jake Gyllenhaal, Zendaya, Jacob Batalon, Tony Revolori, Martin Starr, Numan Acar, J.B. Smoove, Oli Hill, Remy Hii, Marisa Tomei, Michael Keaton, Jon Favreau, Cobie Smulders, and Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury.

Spider-Man: Far From Home is now playing in theaters! Stay tuned for the latest news on the future of the Marvel Cinematic Universe!

Source: Marvel

Spider-Man Jake Gyllenhaal Mysterio

Spider-Man Jake Gyllenhaal Mysterio

Spider-Man Jake Gyllenhaal Mysterio

Spider-Man Jake Gyllenhaal Mysterio

Spider-Man Jake Gyllenhaal Mysterio

Spider-Man Jake Gyllenhaal Mysterio

Previous1 of 10

Sebastian Peris

Sebastian Peris

Canadian film buff, political junkie, comic book geek, and board game enthusiast.