Michael Keaton knows something about playing the hero, but when he returns to the world of comic book adaptations, it'll be as the bad guy this time around. The veteran actor stars in this summer's Spider-Man: Homecoming as the primary villain of the flick, The Vulture. One of Spidey's oldest villains, the character appeared for the first time in Amazing Spider-Man #2 in 1963, but he's never made it to the big screen, until now. While Adrian Toomes has been reimagined many times, the villain will have new layers to make him surprisingly relevant to the goings-on of the world today, Keaton teased at a recent event hosted by EW.
After teasing that he "can't tell you anything" about his new villainous role, Keaton did open up a bit about what to expect.
"Actually, the character has more relevance. I know there’s this issue that comes up about how timely The Founder is, in terms of where we are now in this country. My character, actually, is, if not more relevant — and I’m not going to say more than that, but yes," Keaton said.
When he started looking at the Vulture's full story, he had already taken the role, but was excited to discover he's not just a cackling supervillain.
"There’s a B-story to this guy that’s kind of really interesting and really relevant. I would be lying if I said that’s why I took it, but as we talked about it and did, I went, ‘Whoa, there’s some layers to this guy,’" the actor remarked.
Keaton praised director Jon Watts as "a very bright guy" who "wanted to bring this [mystery] issue out" in the character and the film. Ultimately, he thinks the Vulture will be surprisingly relatable for audiences.
"A lot of people are going to like him more than they probably want to, would be my guess," he teased.
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"A young Peter Parker/Spider-Man (Tom Holland), who made his sensational debut in Captain America: Civil War, begins to navigate his newfound identity as the web-slinging super hero in Spider-Man: Homecoming. Thrilled by his experience with the Avengers, Peter returns home, where he lives with his Aunt May (Marisa Tomei), under the watchful eye of his new mentor Tony Stark (Robert Downey, Jr.). Peter tries to fall back into his normal daily routine – distracted by thoughts of proving himself to be more than just your friendly neighborhood Spider-Man – but when the Vulture (Michael Keaton) emerges as a new villain, everything that Peter holds most important will be threatened.
The cast features Tom Holland, Michael Keaton, Zendaya, Donald Glover, Jacob Batalon, Laura Harrier, Tony Revolori, Tyne Daly, Bokeem Woodbine, with Marisa Tomei, and Robert Downey Jr.. It also includes Jon Favreau, Martin Starr, Kenneth Choi, Michael Mando, Selenis Leyva, Isabella Amara, Jorge Lendeborg, Jr., JJ Totah, Hannibal Buress, and Jacob Batalon.
The film is being directed by Jon Watts (Cop Car), based on a screenplay by Jonathan Goldstein & John Francis Daley (Vacation reboot) and Jon Watts & Christopher Ford and Chris McKenna & Erik Sommers."
Spider-Man: Homecoming hits theaters July 7, 2017.