The Worst Kept Secret in Hollywood

Andrew Garfield trying his best to deny his role in No Way Home

Andrew Garfield trying his best to deny his role in No Way Home

Gavin Clingham, Staff Writer


If you read past the bold text and haven’t seen Spiderman: No Way Home yet, I’m going to grant you one last warning if you really want to see it. Sony and Marvel went through a lot of trouble and spent an indescribable amount of money to keep these spoilers a secret. This article will fully dive into spoilers, so do not keep reading if you haven’t seen it yet. If you have seen it, then let’s talk about it, shall we?

It’s safe to say that Spiderman: No Way Home was going to be the biggest film of 2021. With Spiderman already being a big name, it was garnering even more attention because it was marketed to give closure on the entire Spiderman franchise (but there are already two trilogies planned for Tom Holland). Even with that, there was so much more attention because there was a rumor spreading around Hollywood and the internet like a rumor in a high school hallway. This rumor for the new Spiderman movie claimed that Andrew Garfield and Tobey Maguire were returning to their original roles for the film. This rumor basically served as free marketing for this film. Sony and Marvel could’ve just decided to never promote it and it still would’ve made 1 and a half billion dollars because this rumor instigated so much hype and widespread promotion. While we’ve now seen the three Spidermen in their full glory, it’s curious to see exactly how this casting secret got so out of hand and has been deemed by the media to be “The Worst Kept Secret in Hollywood.” So exactly where did this all start and how hard did Marvel and Sony try to keep the werewolves a secret?

Jamie Foxx’s now deleted instagram post that kickstarted the rumor (

The earliest I could trace the beginning of this leak was around early September of 2020. Around this time, there were a lot of casting leaks for the villains of Tom Holland’s third Spiderman movie. Before the first official villain was officially announced, sources who worked at Sony were leaking information to internet news sites that Maguire and Garfield would be returning to their original roles. These were thought to be only rumors at the time but then people began to believe it when Jamie Foxx (who played Electro in The Amazing Spiderman 2) announced that he would be cast. People then immediately questioned why the image he posted had three Spidermen on it. The Instagram post was deleted quickly, but it did warrant suspicion. Then these rumors were confirmed by a web series called Popcorned Planet, who said that a source who works from Sony told him that this was really happening. Then by the power of Twitter, this rumor had spread like the greatest wildfire across the internet. By the time Zendaya (who played MJ in No Way Home) was scheduled for a Jimmy Kimmel interview in December of 2020, the rumor had made its way into an interview question to which she did not know how to answer. However, things calmed down for a little bit as people were convinced by Zendaya and Tom Holland that this really wasn’t happening. However, that didn’t stop the internet. 

Since people on the internet realized the supporting cast may not even know about this secret, (Marvel has done a lot to keep secrets before) the attention turned to asking Andrew Garfield and Tobey Maguire themselves. See, it was easy for Tobey Maguire because he was already taking a break from acting to support his family and he had no social media besides a dead Twitter account, so there was no true way to get the answer out of him. However, Andrew Garfield was different. He had three confirmed movies coming out in 2021 that he had to promote and do interviews for. This meant that he couldn’t escape the question, he couldn’t directly say no, and he couldn’t say he felt uncomfortable with the question because that would basically confirm it. The first stressful interview came on May 5th in 2021. Andrew Garfield was asked about it and he said that he thought it would be cool, but he hadn’t been casted. That seemed like it put a rest to the whole thing, but then he was interviewed for the Happy, Sad, Confused podcast. On here, interviewer Josh Horowitz asked him about his involvement and he launched into how he feels like he’s in a game of Werewolf (it’s another version of the game Mafia) and everyone keeps saying it’s him, but he’s not the werewolf. As of January 2022, Garfield has stated that he said this as a way of telling the truth while also lying so that fans could still be surprised. However, he didn’t anticipate the fact that people were now on to him more than ever before. From then on, he was deemed the werewolf. His nervous laughter and stuttering was all anyone needed to confirm it. Garfield was then barraged with questions about his potential role in the film. This wasn’t helped by the fact that Alfred Molina gave some critical information that acted as the fuel to these rumors. He said that he has to be de-aged for the film and that it will carry on his story right from Spiderman 2, which pretty much made every fan think that Andrew Garfield and Tobey Maguire were 100% in Spiderman: No Way Home

An image from Spiderman No Way Home that leaked 5 months before the official release (

Then came the one thing that Marvel and Sony really tried to put down: the leaks. This film has probably had more leaks than any other film to date. If you saw an image come up from the film online, it was never ignored. The only thing that people on the internet wondered was whether it was real or not. People made photoshopped images that were dismissed, then unknown employees at Sony kept leaking images from the movie (it didn’t show Maguire or Garfield though), then Youtube channels were making fan trailers that they said were real, and then there were internet trolls who took a different route. To try and make the leak seem believable, some people trying to troll the internet made a fake trailer of the movie and then filmed it in a theater (they also put a watermark on the screen to make it seem real). Each trailer would be scoured over to see if it was really bringing back Maguire or Garfield and every time, it was proven to be false. No matter how many fan trailers portrayed Maguire and Garfield, fans didn’t believe it and they were starting to forget about it. However, in July, an image of Garfield in his Spiderman suit began to trend online. It was at first believed to be from a deleted scene in an old Spiderman movie, but then people noticed that he had a very different haircut than both movies. Then an anonymous account began posting on YouTube that they were about to break the internet. They then put up the video that the image was originally from, which seemed to confirm it, but no one really knew. Another user made a video claiming that it was fake and that he deepfaked (superimposed Garfield’s face onto a different body) it, but then people began to observe it and realize that it might not have been a deep fake. It did get denied by Andrew Garfield instantly and exposed him to even more questions. 

With fans getting treated to new clips from No Way Home, it wouldn’t be enough. It didn’t matter if Willem Dafoe was coming back or even if pretty much every villain from the past Spiderman movies were coming back. They needed to find out if Maguire and Garfield were back. Even more rumors broke out in the last few months and every now and then. Even the entire storyline of the third act of the movie was posted online and it was almost entirely on point. It got to the point where Marvel president Kevin Feige just stopped caring about the leaks, claiming he was numb to it now. Finally, we got our answer on December 17th 2021. The two Spider Men were back and everyone could stop denying the rumors. It was all meant to be the greatest surprise in the theater, but it ended up being the conclusion to a year of speculation. But could this kind of secret even be kept at all?