The Reality of the Sony-Marvel Spider-Man Arrangement and Why Not to Worry

With the release of the new Spider-Man: Far From Home trailer yesterday, naturally the concern trolling about Sony pulling Spider-Man out of the MCU has begun again; when the people spreading such FUD are just doing so for attention or to get people all upset over something that’s very easy to research and find out the truth about.

The people preaching that Sony will pull Spider-Man out of the MCU and torpedo the profits of their primary franchise are pushing a false claim that the Sony-Marvel deal is only for five movies. That’s right, despite thousands of websites and every armchair contract expert on internet message boards pushing it; the claim of the deal only being for “five movies” is a case of an internet urban legend that has been accepted as truth. Because when you actually research it, there’s no real evidence for that and the facts point to a six-movie (not five-movie) deal.

The closest you get to evidence for the five-movie myth is an interview with the Toronto Sun where Kevin Feige discusses the five-movie storyline they have planned for Peter Parker, “We are looking at a five-movie storyline — Civil War, Homecoming, Avengers: Infinity War, untitled Avengers, Homecoming 2 — or whatever we end up calling it — as an amazing five-story journey for Peter Parker. In the way that the events of Civil War directly inform the opening of Homecoming and his state of mind as he goes back to high school, so too will the events of the next two Avengers movies as he continues with high school. This original 22-movie arc ends with the untitled Avengers in May of 2019 and then two months later it will be Peter and Spider-Man (on July 5, 2019) that usher us into the aftermath and how things proceed from there.”

Feige was not talking about the Sony-Marvel deal there, he was talking about the storyline they had planned for Spidey in the MCU up through the events of Avengers: Endgame. It’s a couple weeks after Avengers: Endgame and Kevin Feige won’t even talk now about what’s going to happen in the MCU beyond Spider-Man: Far From Home, there’s no way he was going to do that in 2017. But there is a third Spider-Man solo film on the contract. If you don’t want to believe me, listen to what Tom Holland has to say about that.

In a 2016 cover story done with The Hollywood Reporter, Tom Holland discusses his contract with Marvel. That’s right, from the interview he infers that his contract to play Spider-Man is actually with Marvel (as they produce the films, not Sony). That would explain why Holland hasn’t appeared in the Sony Universe of Marvel Characters, despite bogus rumors claiming he would have a cameo in Venom. It also explains the language of the Venom filmmakers describing legal challenges to including Holland’s Spider-Man.

Holland states that his contract for Marvel films totals six movies, three solo and three appearances in other movies:

“I do know I have three Spider-Man [appearances in other] movies and three solo movies contracted. But if you have another movie, Marvel is so good at working around it.”

He has now done five of those, he’s fulfilled the three appearances in team movies with Avengers: Endgame and following Spider-Man: Far From Home there remains one more solo film on his contract. If Sony maintains their every-two-years schedule for Spider-Man, that means July 2021 is likely for the film.

A year after that THR cover story, Holland backed up his three-movie Spider-Man deal in and interview with French outlet AlloCine at the release of Homecoming, saying there are two more Spider-Man solo films coming, “There is still a lot of room for Peter Parker and Spider-Man especially to grow in the next two movies. He’s definitely not the finished article by the end of Spider-Man: Homecoming and I really look forward to exploring the different ways he can grow up and go through puberty I guess. It’s going to be an exciting couple of movies… Yeah, there’ll be Spider-Man 2 and 3, it won’t be Homecoming 2 and 3.”

As the THR story infers Holland’s contract is a six-movie deal with Marvel, the Internet’s popular FUD of Sony pulling Spider-Man out of the MCU after Far From Home and making a Sony-Holland movie doesn’t check out either. It doesn’t work that way. If Sony were to try to do something like that, they’d have to deal with Holland’s contract and that third movie he still has with Marvel. That can be messy… and costly. It also doesn’t make much sense if you look at the real numbers. Venom was popular, but if you look at Spider-Man; the MCU produced films are much more profitable than Sony ever was with Spider-Man. They would shoot themselves in the foot to throw away a good thing they have where Marvel produces the films cheaper for them and they reap all the profits that are much higher.

Of course the people pushing this internet FUD about the Sony deal like to point to a comment Amy Pascal made to a notorious clickbait site a few years ago about the possibility that the arrangement never happening again after the Homecoming sequel. It was obvious she misspoke after the facts about Tom Holland’s contract that have come out since, and the originating video of the comments has been removed from the Internet. Of course if you still want to believe a misspoken comment by Amy Pascal, then you probably also believe that Venom is in the MCU.

Hopefully this article will put to rest some of the fears I know a lot of you have expressed after the false narrative of a “five movie” deal has begun to be spread around this week after the Spider-Man trailer. It happens every time Spider-Man is in the news now. But as you can see there is factual evidence out there that Holland is contracted for six Marvel movies, which means he has one solo film left to go before fans have to worry about another Spider-Man reboot.