It has been a wild week for the Marvel Cinematic Universe, as it may lose one of its biggest characters–Spider-Man–because of a dispute between Sony and Disney over the rights. In the middle of the madness is actor Tom Holland who plays Peter Parker/Spider-Man in the MCU films. Regardless of the final outcome though, Holland showed up to D23 on Saturday to promote his upcoming Pixar movie, Onward, coming Spring 2020.
The portion of the panel kicked off with a video. The movie takes place in a magical world filled with faeries, mermaids, elves, and more. Then, a jet flies by, and the magical world is gone, and it’s our modern day, filled with these creatures, including gnomes mowing lawns.
Director Dan Scanlon, producer Kori Rae, actor Chris Pratt were in attendance, alongside Tom Holland, who previously starred with Pratt in Avengers: Infinity War. “Firstly, it’s so good to be back here at D23,” Holland said. “This is the best day of the year. Last time we were here, we were space buddies fighting on Titan. And now we’re elf buddies fighting in LA.”
At this point, nothing about Spider-Man had been mentioned. However, after the new footage was shown to the crowd–detailed below–Holland turned to the crowd and said, “It’s been a crazy week, and I want you to know I am grateful from the bottom of my heart, and I love you 3000.” He left the stage with the audience screaming.
Eight minutes of footage was then shown to everyone attending the D23 panel.
As for the future of Spider-Man in the MCU, the future is uncertain. Both fans and Sony remain optimistic about Spider-Man’s inclusion in future MCU films though. “Much of today’s news about Spider-Man has mischaracterized recent discussions about Kevin Feige’s involvement in the franchise,” Sony said in a series of tweets. “We are disappointed, but respect Disney’s decision not to have him continue as a lead producer of our next live-action Spider-Man film. We hope this might change in the future, but understand that the many new responsibilities that Disney has given him–including all their newly added Marvel properties–do not allow time for him to work on IP they do not own. Kevin is terrific and we are grateful for his help and guidance and appreciate the path he has helped put us on, which we will continue.”
Disney is also hopeful a deal will be worked out between the two companies, as Marvel Studios executive producer Jon Favreau told ET: “As a fan, [I’m] cautiously hopeful that something will come together, because I think all the fans wanna see those characters together. … Things don’t always–what you read isn’t always indicative of where things are now, so hopefully I’ll find out more while I’m here. Holding out hope that this isn’t the final chapter of that story.”
Regardless of any potential Spider-Man involvement in the future of the MCU, Marvel Studios isn’t slowing down anytime soon. It was revealed yesterday that in addition to the MCU shows previously announced for Disney+ that Ms. Marvel, She-Hulk, and Moon Knight would each get their own original series.