Spider-Man: No Way Home Star Alfred Molina Breaks Silence on Doctor Octopus Return

Fans were stunned to learn that Marvel Studios had plans to bring back classic Spidey villains for Spider-Man: No Way Home, with Tom Holland going up against Doctor Octopus and Electro from the previous franchises of films. Knowing that actors Alfred Molina And Jamie Foxx would be reprising those roles in the Marvel Cinematic Universe set up a ton of questions about the nature of the multiverse while creating more rumors about the possible returns of Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield. Now Molina himself has begun to open up about his return as Doc Ock during a recent interview, explaining why he's breaking his vow of silence.

Molina spoke with Variety about his role in Spider-Man: No Way Home. During the discussion, he spoke at length about his appearance in the film and working with director Jon Watts.

“When we were shooting it, we were all under orders not to talk about it, because it was supposed to be some great big secret,” said Molina. “But, you know, it’s all over the internet. I actually described myself as the worst kept secret in Hollywood!

The actor poked fun at himself for returning to the superhero franchise. Molina last appeared as Doctor Octopus in the 2004 sequel Spider-Man 2.

“It was wonderful,” Molina said. “It was very interesting going back after 17 years to play the same role, given that in the intervening years, I now have two chins, a wattle, crow’s feet and a slightly a slightly dodgy lower back.”

Molina asked Watts how Doc Ock could return given that he died at the end of Spider-Man 2, to which Watts pointed out to him, "In this universe, no one really dies." The director went on to tell him that Otto Octavius' story would pick up from that moment when he plunged into the river, taking off from the events of Spider-Man 2. But Molina had other concerns, specifically how he could continue to play that part 17 years later.

“He just looked at me, and said, ‘Did you see what we did to [Robert Downey Jr.] and [Samuel L. Jackson]?'” Molina added with a laugh. He said, "I don’t have the same physicality that I had 17 years ago. That’s just a fact."

But as Molina himself put it, Doc Ock's mechanical arms are the stars of the show.

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“I then remembered that it’s the tentacles that do all the work!," he said. M'y basic physical move as Doc Ock, as the actor, is just this. I just do that a lot, and the arms are doing all the killing and smashing and breaking. I’m just going —” he glared again — “with a kind of mean look on my face... It was fantastic.”

Spider-Man: No Way Home is currently set to release in theaters on December 17th.