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While visiting Jimmy Kimmel Live! on Wednesday, Tom Holland shared how a pub phone call with Disney CEO Bob Iger helped keep the Spider-Man franchise within the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Kimmel shared how the last time Iger was on the show, he spoke of how Holland helped smooth things over between Sony Pictures and Disney to ensure Peter Parker could continue to save the day with his fellow Avengers.
“I wouldn’t say it was entirely my doing,” Holland told the late-night host, before jokingly adding, “I saved Spider-Man!”
On Aug. 20, news broke that talks had broken down between Sony and Marvel on future Spider-Man installments. That would mean Spider-Man would no longer be part of the MCU, and that a third Sony Spidey movie fronted by Holland would not involve Marvel Studios.
The franchise’s 23-year-old star quickly swung into action, proving to be as heroic as his onscreen persona. Holland first made a surprise appearance at Disney’s D23 Expo days after the Sony-Disney divorce to promote the animated movie Onward. Fans, who had adopted the hashtag #SaveSpiderMan to lobby Sony to make a deal with Disney, were extremely receptive to his appearance. Holland thanked them by quoting Tony Stark: “I love you 3,000.”
Holland told Kimmel he had was “devastated” over the Sony-Disney divorce and described his experience at the expo as “not the best day.” The actor later asked for Iger’s email and phone number, explaining he only wanted to thank him for “changing my life in the best way.”
When Iger responded, asking if Holland would be available sometime to “jump on the phone,” Holland expressed, “You don’t give Bob Iger a schedule” and thus told the Disney CEO he could reach the actor anytime he wanted.
That time ended up being when Holland and his family were at a pub trivia night, and the actor was “three pints in” and had not eaten much. Despite feeling a little drunk, Holland and Iger’s conversation ended up being an extremely positive one — both for the actor and Spider-Man’s future with the MCU.
While thanking Iger, Holland was told “there is a world in which we can make this work.”
When asked if he was emotional during the call, Holland admitted, “I weeped.”
“I was really emotional because I felt like it was all coming to an end,” Holland added, but noted Sony had a good plan for the famed webslinger and “the future of Spider-Man was very bright.”
Thus, thanks in part to Holland, Iger and Sony film chairman Tom Rothman reached a resolution, announced Sep. 27, that offered a solid future for the Spider-Man franchise.
To that, Kimmel thanked the actor, saying, “I’m glad you got drunk and got on the phone with Bob!”
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