When popular comic book characters are adapted to the big screen, it’s a given that changes will be made to make the character work in a modern setting, particularly if the character has decades of history. But the changes planned for the upcoming Marvel and Sony joint production, Spider-Man: Homecoming, may be the most drastic we’ve ever seen. Yes, that’s right: Flash Thompson will no longer be a bully.
Spider-Man himself, Tom Holland, revealed the details in The Disney Channel’s A Fan’s Guide To Spider-Man: Homecoming.
“One of the main differences from the previous movies is that we don’t really have a bully,” Holland said. “His main rival is Flash. They have this really funny back-and-forth.”
In the comics, Flash Thompson has long since moved past his bully origins, but Sony’s Spider-Man movies have traditionally relied on Spider-Man’s original 1960s source material for inspiration, and Flash’s bullying of Peter helps to quickly establish Peter’s social standing. Though Spider-Man: Homecoming does star a high school age Peter Parker, the movie does appear to be breaking from formula in a lot of key ways, and the portrayal of Thompson by actor Tony Revolori is just a small piece of the puzzle.
“We don’t do the spider bite,” said Marvel Studios head Kevin Feige in the Disney Channel special, explaining that Peter will have been Spider-Man for more than six months by the start of the movie. “We don’t do the death of Uncle Ben. We’ve seen that before.”
“It’s a whole new way of telling his story,” added producer Amy Pascal. “This peter is on the periphery of the world that Tony Stark lives in.
“Being Spider-Man in a world where the Avengers exist means we don’t have to spend any time explaining that,” concluded director Jon Waters. “Which means we can get right into the fun of it, telling the story from Peter’s perspective.”
Spider-Man: Homecoming hits theaters on July 7.