With 19-year old Tom Holland cast as Spider Man in the upcoming Jon Watts directed reboot, it has been anyone’s guess as to the age of the character.
With rumours hinting the film, written by Jonathan Goldstein and John Francis Daily, would bear resemblance to the coming-of-age dramas of John Hughes; Holland now looks set to carry on the Hollywood tradition of actors playing characters much younger than themselves (of which Hughes also made ample use). That’s right, your new Spider Man will be just 15 years old.
Speaking to Empire magazine, Watts explained the decision: “There are only so many times you can kill Uncle Ben… I love the idea of making a coming-of-age high-school movie. We’re really going to see Peter Parker in high school and get deeper into that side of it. He’s just 15 now”.
There are adequate reasons for such a young interpretation of the character to join the Marvel Cinematic Universe; for a start, most of the current Avengers line-up are well known actors in their own right, and will no doubt want to hang up their capes and cowls at some point for other projects. A young talent in a popular role is likely to stick around for a good while. Also, there are few reference points for younger viewers in Marvel’s films (see; the awful child in Iron Man 3). In comics, teenager Miles Morales has become much more popular than his older counterpart; finally leaving his Ultimate universe in Secret Wars to join a mainstream title.
After leaked emails from Sony confirmed the character will remain white, as apposed to the hispanic Morales, it seems Marvel is still unwilling to make diversity a priority.