Who is the latest actress to be mysteriously linked to the upcoming Spider-Man 4? Get ready to join the club, Anne Hathaway! With the rumor regarding Rachel McAdams just dying down, you would have thought that there would be a brief, unspoken embargo on Spider-Man 4 casting rumors. They may not always be accurate (well, they're rarely accurate) but if anything, they are consistent.
Deadline's Nikke Finke is reporting that according to her sources, producers have approached Anne Hathaway for a yet-unknown role in the franchise's fourth effort. Besides the fact that she will not replace Kirsten Dunst as Mary Jane, that is essentially the extent of the report. Finke herself comes clean in prefacing that she knew very little about comic books or comic-related properties. Clearly, this is not the case of a fangirl spreading wild rumors for attention. According to Finke:
"You know I'm insecure about my geek bonafides which I've been trying to improve in recent years. (Heck, I grew up never reading a single comic book.)"
Nevetheless, the fact that she classifies this tidbit as a "bonafide" may be telling in how much weight it carries. (It's certainly not as outrageous as some other SM4 rumors we've been hearing.)
If the rumor turns out legit, what part do you think the producers have in mind for Anne Hathaway? I know with the Rachel McAdams thing, everyone still has The Black Cat on the brain. That rumor was totally fabricated, but still seems to be influencing our perceptions of the film. Personally, I think the inclusion of The Black Cat would be awkward and counter-productive. (However, when has that ever affected things?)
Here's a wild, purely speculative pitch: Maybe they're bringing Spider-Woman on to the scene. We know that Sony currently holds rights to the Spider-Man franchise in perpetuity (At least until the day Disney flexes some of its muscle.) We can also surmise that it would be prudent to wait a good number of years for things to die down before they go the inevitable "reboot" route. What will they do until then? Perhaps, they may test the waters by introducing Anne Hathaway as future Spider-Woman, Jessica Drew, in a sort of "Trojan-Horse spinoff" strategy. They set her up in a side-story in the film, leading up to her own feature.
She may not be the first actress that comes to mind, but would you go see Anne Hathaway in a tight red suit, fighting criminals? (After all, she dated one, right? What better way to get revenge?)