As strange as this sounds, Spider-Man 2 star Alfred Molina says his appearance in the upcoming Spider-Man: No Way Home will pick up where that movie left off: with Otto Octavius (Molina) dead in the Hudson.
Yeah, that does sound strange.
The actor’s remarks come from a chat with Variety, where he confirms his presence on set was the “the worst kept secret in Hollywood” and how director Jon Watts addressed his concerns about coming back to Doc Ock at age 67. Even in print, the details come with Molina’s undeniable charm, but the key information for Marvel watchers is this: the good doctor’s story picks up from “that moment” of his apparent death in Spider-Man 2. Feel free to speculate what sort of time-space anomaly might push him twenty-ish years and four or five alternate timelines away from his home reality. But, as we recall, Octavius’s work included dark matter, which is often deployed in film and television to make reality changes work.
Also, Molina mentioned Marvel’s de-aging techniques will be employed to make him look as he did in 2004. If the magic trick is as good as it was in Captain Marvel — where you just forget Samuel L. Jackson is twenty-five years older than he looks in that film — then it should aid Doc Ock’s story well.
But then, what is his story? Will he still be under the influence of his tentacles when he arrives in the Marvel Cinematic Universe? Or will he be the warmer man we met before his life went to hell in Spider-Man 2. Also, as we’re fans of The Superior Spider-Man, will it all lead to Otto becoming the webslinger?
Curiously, Marvel is still not confirming Molina’s involvement, which tracks with their other surprising non-statements in the wake of set photos; like our favorite recent incident in which Hailee Steinfeld was spotted in Kate Bishop garb two weeks before the studio finally confirmed her as a member of the cast. But with Molina openly talking about his time in the MCU, maybe they’ll back up his claim.
Spider-Man: No Way Home is set for release on December 17th, 2021