Prior to the end of Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man trilogy, a fourth film in the series was in development and would have featured a character that fans ended up seeing years later in the MCU.
In a recent post on Twitter, comic book creator and writer Ken Penders — who is most well-known for his work on Archie’s Sonic the Hedgehog comics series — revealed that he had visited friends who were working on a costume for the comic villain Vulture.
Not only did Penders share a photograph of a prototype wing, but he also noted that the role of Vulture was intended for actor John Malkovich. Once production on the film shut down, however, all materials were turned in, with Penders deciding to finally share the photograph nearly 15 years later.
In follow-up tweets, Penders also mentioned that a full body mold of Vulture’s suit was created, but that he wasn’t allowed to photograph it due to Malkovich’s casting not being finalized at the time. While it’s unknown what ended up happening to the costume, Penders assumes it was either destroyed or is still in storage at Sony Pictures.
While Vulture wouldn’t make any appearances in Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man films, the character did end up appearing in a film, with Michael Keaton taking on the role in the 2017 film Spider-Man: Homecoming.
Spider-Man 4 was originally set to release sometime in 2011, with director Sam Raimi and actor Tobey Maguire set to return to the franchise. However, Raimi eventually left the project due to creative differences and the project was canceled, leading to The Amazing Spider-Man duology starring Andrew Garfield.
While Raimi never saw himself returning to the world of Spider-Man, the inclusion of many of the characters from his trilogy — including Tobey Maguire himself — in 2021’s Spider-Man: No Way Home has left the director thinking there may be a future for another Spidey film with him at the helm. “I didn’t think it was possible, but after jumping back in with the Multiverse, I realized that anything is possible now, so I’m completely open to it,” Raimi said in an interview with Moviepilot earlier this year.