Emma Stone has been confirmed as one of the two female leads in Sony Pictures’ Spider-Man reboot, but not as Mary Jane Watson as we previously reported. Instead, Stone will play Gwen Stacy, Peter Parker’s first love in the Marvel comic book series.
Stone’s red hair in most of her movies is likely to blame for the mix-up (though she’s actually a natural blonde), but Deadline says both the studio and her representation expected her to take the MJ role. I’m sure fans will find a way to be outraged by this follicle fiasco, but I should remind you that the blonde Kirsten Dunst played the redheaded Mary Jane and Bryce Dallas Howard went platinum as Gwen in Sam Raimi’s own Spider-Man trilogy. I’m sure Stone will do a fantastic job, as she is accustomed to doing, despite the head-scratching switch.
The casting of Andrew Garfield and Stone establishes the two leads for Sony’s origin story reboot, but director Marc Webb still needs to name a “new” Mary Jane and a central villain. As I understand it, MJ may be a supporting character with a promise for more screen time in later installments — THR hears she’s not even in the film — and Venom is the rumored antagonist at this point with Philip Seymour Hoffman on the shortlist. In the comics, Stacy dies at the hands of the Green Goblin, but perhaps the studio wants to distance itself from Raimi’s original just 8 years ago.
It’s unclear who Sony is considering for Mary Jane since most of the names thus far have been linked to Gwen Stacy. Mia Wasikowska (Alice in Wonderland), Dianna Agron (“Glee”), Georgina Haig (Wasted on the Young), and Dominique McElligott (Moon) were in the mix up until this weekend. Personally, I’m still lobbying for Imogen Poots and, why not, “True Blood” actress Deborah Ann Woll.
The untitled Spider-Man movie is scheduled for July 3, 2012 and is expected to start shooting this fall.
Official Sony/Columbia press release:
CULVER CITY, Calif., October 5, 2010 – Emma Stone has been cast as the female lead in the upcoming Spider-Man film from Columbia Pictures and Marvel Studios, it was announced today by Amy Pascal, co-chairman of Sony Pictures Entertainment and Matt Tolmach, president of Columbia Pictures. Stone has been tapped for the role of Gwen Stacy opposite Andrew Garfield as Peter Parker. The film, to be directed by Marc Webb from a screenplay by James Vanderbilt and produced by Avi Arad and Laura Ziskin, will begin production in December and will be released in theaters nationwide in 3D on July 3, 2012.
The casting continues an association between Sony Pictures Entertainment and the actress, who previously starred in Superbad, The House Bunny, and Zombieland, all for Columbia Pictures; she may currently be seen in Screen Gems’ hit comedy Easy A, and takes a cameo role in Screen Gems’ upcoming Friends with Benefits.
Commenting on the announcement, Tolmach said, “It’s been an incredible journey for us to watch Emma’s star rise as an actress. She is extraordinarily talented and has a very special on-screen spark that is perfect for this role. Given her history with the studio, casting her in one of our most important franchises is a real thrill.”
Webb added, “The chemistry between Andrew and Emma was stunning and made Emma the clear choice. At the heart of the story of Peter Parker is not only the amazing Spider-Man, but also an ordinary teenager who is wondering what he has to do to get the girl. Andrew and Emma will bring everything audiences expect to these roles, but also make them their own. Much to my surprise, it was fun to find out that our choice for Gwen (Emma) is also a natural blonde.”