Asa Butterfield in Ender's Game

Like a school of salmon with Bluetooth headsets, every five years or so a prehistoric instinct seizes Sony executives, prompting them to swim against the tide of popular opinion and spawn yet another Spider-Man origin story into the cool, clear stream of the international box office. Why the executives keep returning to their birthplace and making movies about Peter Parker getting picked on in high school even after those waters have become thoroughly polluted is one of the great mysteries of nature, if by “nature” you mean “character rights.”

Helpless in the face of this blind animal urge, Sony has begun the process of selecting a babyfaced young white boy to don the sacred nerd glasses and ensure another year of bountiful box-office receipts. But before the chosen Spider-Boy can become a Spider-Man, first there must be a short list. The Wrap, citing “multiple individuals with knowledge of the situation” who can reportedly confirm that these young actors “are definitely in the mix as of right now,” names the following names:

Nat Wolff: Co-star of The Fault In Our Stars, and star of the upcoming Paper Towns, based on a book by the same author. A nice young man you could take home to your parents.


Asa Butterfield: Star of Martin Scorsese’s Hugo and the sci-fi adaptation Ender’s Game. Has the wide, innocent eyes of a baby lamb.

Tom Holland: After playing the title role in Billy Elliot: The Musical, launched his career alongside Naomi Watts and Ewan McGregor in The Impossible. Currently appears on Wolf Hall, where we’re certain he’s very polite and cooperative on set.

Timothee Chalamet: Played the teenaged version of Casey Affleck’s character in Interstellar, as well as Finn Walden on Homeland. Cleans up nicely.


Liam James: Probably best known for his role on The Killing, but also had a recurring role on Psych and starred in the indie comedy The Way Way Back. Another white boy. You get the point.

Further information on Spider-Man casting is expected to be revealed within the next few weeks.