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Fewer moments in the Marvel Cinematic Universe have been bigger than the introduction of Tom Holland's Spider-Man. The most popular comic book character was conspicuously absent from the early days of the MCU due to a rights issue with Sony before he finally appeared in Captain America: Civil War. However, it turns out the wall-crawler almost made his debut a full year earlier.
We learned at the end of 2014, when Sony’s emails were hacked and released to the public, that the studio Marvel were already in negotiations, only months after the release of The Amazing Spider-Man 2, about a deal that might allow the web-slinger to appear in Marvel’s universe. Yet the new book MCU: the Reign of Marvel Studios reveals that Avengers: Age of Ultron director Joss Whedon wanted to include Spidey in the final scene of the film as a major tease for the future, thoughMarvel Studios chief Kevin Feige said no.
According to the book, Joss Whedon was aware of the talks between Marvel and Sony, either due to the press behind the leak or because of his direct involvement with the franchise. The filmmaker was also aware of plans to make Captain Marvel a part of the MCU, so Whedon pitched both characters appearing in the final scene of Avengers: Age of Ultron, which saw Captain America as the leader of a new team of Avengers. The final scene in the movie included War Machine, Falcon, Vision and Wanda and would have used the other two appearances as major teases. Check it out in the clip below:
Feige was adamant that Spider-Man’s first appearance in the MCU would not be a brief cameo at the end of Ultron. He apparently was less committed on Carol Danvers, and he let Whedon film a Captain Marvel stand-in for the end scene, but it wasn’t used. Of course, if it had been, that certainly would have changed things for that character in a massive way.
Fans wouldn’t have to wait too long for ol' webhead to make his MCU appearance. The fact that the teenage hero would be heading to the franchise in his own movie was confirmed, though Marvel did try to keep his appearance in the Captain America threequel quiet for a while. But rumors eventually let fans know what was up, and Spidey’s appearance was revealed in a Civil War trailer before the film came out.
A Spidey cameo in Ultron certainly would have changed the way the character‘s story was told in the franchise. And while seeing Spider-Man at the end of the film would have certainly gotten the fans screaming just the way Joss Whedon wanted, it feels like Kevin Feige certainly made the right call giving him a grander entrance into the franchise and allowing him to be part of the story from his beginning.