Shannon O’Connor ’16 / Emertainment Monthly Editor-In-Chief
October 10, Entertainment Weekly confirmed that Shailene Woodley has been offered the role of Mary Jane Watson in the upcoming sequel to this summer’s blockbuster hit The Amazing Spider-Man.
Woodley, while known from her lead role as Amy Juergens in ABC Family’s The Secret Life of the American Teenager, broke out into the film world with her stellar performance alongside George Clooney in last year’s Academy Award winning drama The Descendants.
Although Spider-Man fans have been awaiting the inevitable casting of Peter Parker’s iconic red-headed love interest, the fact that the character is being cast for the sequel poses intriguing questions about the plot and the fate of Gwen Stacey. Avid readers of the Spider-Man comic books are already well-versed in Stacey’s death, as the impact of the event forever torments Parker.
In fact according to an article on IFC Comics, Stacey’s illustrious death is what drew actress Emma Stone to portray her in the reboot, and she hopes the significant event is included in the new films.
IGN Movies quoted Stone saying:
“I hope not,” she said when asked if Gwen should live. “I think [her death is] a hugely important part of her story and of this incarnation of Spider-Man. I think that was very important to everybody. I think there’s a certain expectation and then there’s a certain awareness of mortality that Gwen has already, so I think that it was important to…just because her father was in the face of death everyday and so is Peter, so I think death always surrounds her. I think it’s a really important element to her character. I mean, she, as fans know, is kind of most famous for how she departs. So that’s a weird thing to play, knowing about such an iconic part of her existence.”
Although Stone accepts her character’s fate, fans of The Amazing Spider-Man may not feel the same way. With the villain of sequel has yet to be named options for Stacey’s fate are open, especially since Entertainment Weekly suggests that Electro is definitely a contender, as the post-credit sequence heavily hinted toward his arrival, and in the comics Green Goblin was ultimately responsible for the death of Gwen Stacey. However, the films have not always followed the comic books verbatim, therefore making it extremely possible that another villain may take her life as this was the case with her father George Stacey’s death in The Amazing Spider-Man. According to the comic books Mr. Stacey was killed protecting a child in from the ongoing battle between Spider-Man and Doctor Octopus; however in the film the Lizard slays him during the final battle sequence.
While waiting on Woodley’s response to the casting offer, fans will mull over the several possible plotlines for the sequel and the casting possibilities for Parker’s best friend Harry Osborne.