When Tom Holland’s third solo outing as part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe swings into theaters next December, it’ll mark the eighth live-action Spider-Man movie to hit the big screen in less than 20 years, and the character’s twelfth appearance overall including the various MCU projects he’s shown up in as well as Sony’s Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse.
The web-slinger has been such a constant presence on our screens over the last two decades, in fact, that a lot of people might not even be aware of the incredibly complex and protracted battles that raged across Hollywood in an attempt to give the iconic comic book character his feature film debut in the first place.
B-movie legend Roger Corman held the rights in 1985, before they bounced to Cannon Films and then onto Carolco Pictures where the project was picked up by James Cameron, who wrote a 57-page scriptment for Spider-Man. This was during the time when he actually made movies on a semi-regular basis, and he was planning to tackle the superhero blockbuster after True Lies.
The Terminator creator reportedly wanted a young and still relatively unknown Leonardo DiCaprio for the title role and was said to be eying Arnold Schwarzenegger for Doctor Octopus, and you can check out how the Inception and Titanic star could have looked as Peter Parker in the mid-90s below.
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Cameron’s scriptment is widely available to read on the internet, and it would have made for a very unusual approach to Spider-Man. Not only is it heavy on both the profanity and puberty metaphors, but there’s also a scene where Spidey seduces Mary Jane Watson on top of the Brooklyn Bridge after regaling her with tales of arachnid mating rituals. We kid you not.