Spider-Man: No Way Home may be staking its claim as the biggest movie release since the pandemic upended the film industry, but the film’s nearly $1.7 billion gross (so far) isn’t the only thing setting records. Syfy Wire reports that Tobey Maguire (Peter Parker) and Willem Dafoe (Green Goblin) have just snagged the Guinness World Record for “longest career as a live-action Marvel character” by returning to the roles they portrayed in Sam Raimi’s 2002 Spider-Man film. That movie was released 19 years ago, which means that Maguire and Dafoe have now technically portrayed the characters for nearly two decades.
The record was previously held by Hugh Jackman and Patrick Stewart, who have played Wolverine and Professor Xavier in almost all of the X-Men movies beginning with X-Men back in 2000 and running through 2017’s Logan. Their record stands at 16 years and 232 days.
All that being said, there are plenty of rumors that we may see former X-Men stars reprise their roles in the MCU in the near future, with Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness as a particular point of speculation for fans. Should Jackman, Stewart, or any of the cast from the 2000 X-Men ever return, they would reclaim the record…unless Maguire continues to reprise his role as Spider-Man, which is another fun Doctor Strange 2 rumor. Do we have a Guinness Record war on our hands?
Spider-Man: No Way Home script had a nod to Stan Lee
Syfy Wire also reports that the script for Spider-Man: No Way Home originally had a nod to Marvel creator Stan Lee. Lee cameoed in just about every Marvel film up until his death in 2018 at the age of 95. But his shadow looms large, and even though he is no longer with us, the crews behind the Marvel films have still been finding ways to tip their hat to the visionary comic creator, such as Venom: Let Their Be Carnage’s featuring a magazine bearing his face.
In the final moments of Spider-Man: No Way Home, Tom Holland’s Peter Parker goes to a café in hopes of getting his former girlfriend MJ (Zendaya) to remember him, after she lost all memory of their time together during the film’s climax. In the script, MJ was supposed to be talking to a “Stan Lee lookalike” at the counter. While the scene does feature an older man sitting at the counter, it seems the movie did away with the idea of trying to make them resemble Lee.
Which…feels fine, really. Lee left an enormous mark on all these movies, and the fact that his final cameo was in Avengers: Endgame feels like a pretty appropriate send-off. Tipping a hat to Lee with an easter egg is one thing, but bringing in someone to basically impersonate him is another matter. I’d say Spider-Man: No Way Home made the right call here.
Spider-Man: No Way Home continues to dominate at the box office. There’s no word on whether we’ll see Maguire or Dafoe reprise their roles again after this film, but anything is possible.