Spider-Man actor Tom Holland is throwing his support behind a gay version of the web-slinging superhero.
Asked by the Times if he would be okay with Peter Parker/Spider-Man being gay, Holland said, “Yeah, of course.”
“I can’t talk about the future of the character because honestly I don’t know and it’s out of my hands,” Holland continued. “But I do know a lot about the future of Marvel, and they are going to be representing lots of different people in the next few years.”
He added: “The world isn’t as simple as a straight white guy. It doesn’t end there, and these films need to represent more than one type of person.”
Marvel Studios’ executives have openly said that the studio plans to introduce more diverse superheroes in the next phase of films.
Victoria Alonso, Marvel’s production chief, told Variety in March that the world is “ready” for a gay superhero in the MCU.
“Our entire success is based on people that are incredibly different,” Alonso said, adding, “Why would we only want to be recognized by only one type of person? Our audience is global, is diverse, is inclusive. If we don’t do it that way for them, we will fail.”
She also referenced rumors that Marvel’s upcoming The Eternals film would feature the MCU’s first openly gay hero, saying the studio would “cast the best Eternals cast that we can.”
Reports emerged that the studio was looking for actors “of all ethnicity” and would “prefer the role to go to an openly gay actor.”
Marvel received some LGBTQ backlash earlier this year for featuring the MCU’s first openly gay character in Avengers: Endgame.
Rather than a major moment for LGBTQ inclusion, background character “Grieving Man” was ridiculed for his insignificance — and for being portrayed by one of the film’s heterosexual directors, Joe Russo.
But Marvel Studios seems committed to doing better. Studio president Kevin Feige told io9 last month that “Grieving Man,” included in a group therapy session with Captain America (Chris Evans), was “never meant to be our first focused character. That was just meant to be a matter of fact and a matter of life and a matter of truth.”
“And I liked it that our hero, Steve Rogers, doesn’t blink an eye at that fact,” Feige said. “It is just truth and is heartbreaking for his loss and for the life he’s trying to put back together. It was never meant to be looked at as our first hero. I guess it’s the first reference so it does, of course, get a lot of attention.”
Feige added that the studio hasn’t “been shy about saying that that’s coming and that there’s much more prominent LGBT heroes in the future,” and that it’s “coming soon.”
Brie Larson, titular star of Captain Marvel, also said that she wants better LGBTQ representation in MCU films.
“I don’t understand how you could think that a certain type of person isn’t allowed to be a superhero,” she told Variety in April. “So to me it’s like, we gotta move faster. But I’m always wanting to move faster with this stuff.”