Former Spider-Man star will reportedly return for the fourth movie; fans stunned

Spider-Man 4 has limitless story potential and it will reportedly feature the return of one of the franchise's most beloved characters.
Spider-Man from the multiverse in Columbia Pictures SPIDER-MAN: NO WAY HOME. /
Spider-Man from the multiverse in Columbia Pictures SPIDER-MAN: NO WAY HOME. / /

Spider-Man 4 might just be the most anticipated movie on Marvel Studios' ever-growing calendar of films. It faces huge competition in that department from the upcoming Deadpool and Wolverine, but you can't blame fans for being excited for Peter Parker's return after the jaw-dropping events of 2021's Spider-Man: No Way Home.

That film fully explored the beauty of the multiverse as previous Spidey stars Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield returned for significant roles, reprising their versions of Spider-Man in the movie. To see them star opposite the Marvel Cinematic Universe's Spider-Man, Tom Holland, was a moment in time.

The multi-Spidey adventure also saw Peter face some tragedy, as he lost one of the people he loved the most. However, rumor has it that he - or we, as viewers, - might not have seen the last of that person.

Marisa Tomei will reportedly return as Aunt May in Spider-Man 4

According to Marvel scooper MyTimeToShineHello, Marisa Tomei will return in Spider-Man 4. The legendary actress portrayed Aunt May in the MCU, starting with Captain America: Civil War in 2016 right up until Spider-Man: No Way Home in 2021.

Naturally, the potential of her returning to the role in the next installment in the Spider-Man franchise shouldn't raise too many eyebrows... at least for those who didn't see the previous one. For those who did, however, it would be pretty unexpected to see Aunt May as the character was shockingly killed off in the 2021 film.

During the fight scene between Spider-Man and the Green Goblin in Happy's apartment complex, the two battle up and down the building (and inside and outside of it) before it culminates in the lobby. Aunt May is then wounded by the Goblin's glider, which flies straight into her back. Though she initially shakes it off, May collapses in Peter's arms and dies in an emotional moment, telling her nephew: "With great power, there must also come great responsibility."

The thought of her returning is surprising, but it's not totally outside the realm of possibility in a franchise as expansive and ambitious as the MCU. This is the Multiverse Saga we're in, after all. And fans have been taking to social media to share their shock at the potential return and how it could come about.

How Aunt May could return in the MCU

After the success of the decade-long Infinity Saga, Marvel has now taken us into the multiverse. The Multiverse Saga explores the endless possibilities that exist out there in other worlds outside of the MCU's main continuity, creating many "what if...?" scenarios right before our eyes (and not just in the animated series What If...?!). What if this character from that franchise crossed over with that franchise and this character? What if an alternate version of this character surfaced on the same earth as their doppelganger? They are all possibilities that could (and have) become realities in the Multiverse Saga.

That could explain how Marisa Tomei could end up reappearing in Spider-Man 4 as Aunt May if the report does turn out to be true. Remember Spider-Man: No Way Home was one of Marvel's first real explorations of what the multiverse entails, so it wouldn't be surprising for a sequel to do the same, perhaps having Peter cross paths with a version of Aunt May from another universe?

It's certainly possible. That being said, if the rumors about the film taking a more grounded approach are true, then a flashback and / or vision of our Aunt May would probably be the more logical way to bring her back. After all, it was May's death that ultimately set Peter down this lonely path, distancing himself from everyone else he loves out of fear that something could happen to them, so it would make sense for her to be on his mind.

As the report says, we'll have to wait and see how Tomei returns if she does indeed reprise the role, but the beauty of the Multiverse Saga is that literally anything can happen in the MCU. And maybe it will.

All 12 Spider-Man actors ranked from worst to best. All 12 Spider-Man actors ranked from worst to best. dark. Next