Zendaya starring in 'Spider-Man'? How the new film will be different

Actress Zendaya will reportedly appear in the upcoming 'Spider-Man' movie starring Tom Holland. The film is scheduled to come out in the summer of 2017.

Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP
Zendaya arrives at the 2016 Golden Globe Awards.

Another actress may have joined the upcoming “Spider-Man” film starring Tom Holland. 

Zendaya of “Shake It Up!” has reportedly been cast in the new “Spider-Man” movie. The actress is currently starring in the Disney Channel program “K.C. Undercover.”

Fans of past “Spider-Man” movies are most familiar with heroines Mary Jane Watson and Gwen Stacy when it comes to female leads, but Zendaya may not be playing either of those characters.

Mike Fleming Jr. of Deadline writes that Zendaya is portraying someone named Michelle, while Justin Kroll of Variety says “the character is not [Peter] Parker’s love interest nor a lead role. She will, however, play a bigger part in future installments.”

Also cast in the movie so far is “Empire” actress Marisa Tomei, who reportedly will be portraying Peter’s guardian Aunt May. 

The comic book hero Spider-Man has been adapted for the big screen in two different series, first in the movies starring Tobey Maguire that debuted in 2002 and then in a separate series starring Andrew Garfield that came on the scene in 2012. 

Only three years will separate the franchise's latest incarnation from 2014’s “The Amazing Spider-Man 2.” 

How will the upcoming movie compare to previous incarnations? 

International Business Times writer Tyler McCarthy writes that the new movie will take place in high school but will not be a story of how the web-slinger gained his abilities.

The new movie's omission of the hero's origin story will be one significant departure, but a bigger change might be underway for Spider-Man.

According to the Hollywood Reporter, Holland will appear in this spring’s Marvel movie “Captain America: Civil War.” Spider-Man is a Marvel character but the movies featuring him are currently released by Sony. Marvel licensed the hero in the late 1990s.

As Marvel has become a bigger and bigger force at the multiplex, the question has continued to arise over whether Spider-Man would pop up in a Marvel film alongside characters like Iron Man or Captain America like he often does in the comic books. Comic book fans know that Spider-Man appears in the “Civil War” story that is being told in the upcoming film.

Last year, Marvel and Sony made a deal to work together on upcoming Spider-Man movies and, according to Marvel, “Marvel and Sony Pictures are also exploring opportunities to integrate characters from the [Marvel Comics universe] into future Spider-Man films.” 

So while Maguire and Garfield starred in films that seemed to be separate from other comic book movies, the new movie or movies starring Holland will be made in a movie industry where Spider-Man is reunited with his Marvel Comics crossover contemporaries. 

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