Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man 2 Almost Featured Iron Man

Iron Man

Along with Blade and Bryan Singer’s early X-Men movies, Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man redefined and re-established the potential of what comic book films could be, and ushered in the genre’s boom period that’s still going strong two decades on. It wouldn’t be until a few years later though that the upstart Marvel Studios entered the fray and laid the foundations for their groundbreaking shared universe with Iron Man, with the launchpad for the MCU being regarded by many analysts as a massive gamble at the time.

An Iron Man solo movie had been in development for nearly a decade at that point as the rights bounced between Universal, Fox and New Line, but it wasn’t until they landed in Kevin Feige’s hands that the ambitious plans for the MCU could be put into motion. The script went through countless drafts, and one of those early versions featured a connection between Tony Stark and Raimi’s Spider-Man 2, which is still regarded as one of the finest comic book blockbusters ever made.

One of the many ideas being floated was to reveal that none other than Stark Industries were responsible for the development and creation of the mechanical arms used by Alfred Molina’s Otto Octavius in Spider-Man 2. While the idea was ultimately abandoned due to both rights issues and the decision to establish the MCU as a separate entity that existed outside of any pre-existing movies, it shows that the brain-trust at Marvel Studios always had crossovers between various superheroes as part of their long-term plan.

Ironically, while he didn’t end up being responsible for Doctor Octopus, one of the recurring themes of Iron Man‘s arc in the MCU is that he always seems to inadvertently create his or others’ enemies. His actions have direct consequences that led to the birth of Iron Monger, Ultron, Whiplash, Justin Hammer, Vulture, Aldrich Killian, Zemo and Mysterio, so it’s probably for the best that the connection to Doc Ock was ultimately abandoned.