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Huge leak may reveal Marvel’s next big villain to battle the Avengers

Published Apr 29th, 2021 1:08PM EDT
Marvel Movies Spoilers
Image: Marvel Studios

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The fourth phase of Marvel’s Cinematic Universe has just started with two very different TV shows that finished their runs on Disney+. But WandaVision and The Falcon and the Winter Soldier do very little to advance the overarching MCU storyline. Avengers: Endgame and Spider-Man: Far From Home concluded the Infinity Saga, and we’ve just started exploring the next big plot lines that will extend across several standalone stories for the next decade.

Marvel is rebuilding the MCU after the historic success of Endgame, likely plotting a similar Avengers finale later on down the road. Before that can happen, we need to meet all the new heroes meant to replace the old guard and the new villains who will challenge them. Marvel’s Disney+ shows will add more depth to the MCU’s main story, building up characters in greater detail than the movies. But they won’t advance the overarching story in any significant way. We’ll have to wait for the movies to deliver significant character introductions and plot twists. And it just so happens that a huge leak may reveal Marvel’s plans for the next big MCU villain, who will supposedly debut in one of this year’s most exciting Marvel films.

As always, be warned that major spoilers might follow below.

Of all the MCU Phase 4 films coming out this year, Spider-Man 3 is the most exciting. That’s something you could hardly say about its predecessors. But this time, the stars aligned just right to let Marvel deliver an incredible and fresh Spider-Man story.

First of all, Sony and Disney have a much better relationship than they did a couple of years ago when Sony wanted to remove Tom Holland’s Spider-Man from the MCU. The two giants are expected to partner on several new Spidey adventures, starting with No Way Home. The recent streaming partnership that Disney and Sony announced further cements that idea. Also, plenty of Sony content is coming to Disney+ and Hulu, but Spider-Man is the main Sony property Disney wants.

Secondly, the No Way Home cliffhanger was just amazing. The world knows the identity of Spider-Man, something we never got to explore in Sony films before.

Finally, we have all the multiverse rumors surrounding No Way Home. The film will bring back several villains from Sony’s previous Spider-Man films, as well as the two protagonists from those separate Spider-Man stories. Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield will appear in No Way Home as Spider-Men from the multiverse, according to various leaks that have spoiled Marvel’s secret.

This brings us to an exclusive report from That Hashtag Show that says Norman Osborn is coming to the MCU “in a big way.”

The report notes that Marvel wanted to bring back Dafoe as the primary villain for No Way Home, but that plan has changed now that Disney and Sony have a better partnership than before. Marvel will also introduce a separate version of Norman Osborn in the MCU, played by a different actor. And this Osborn will not be a villain initially:

Peter will begin to research his earth’s version of Norman Osborn after fighting with Willem Dafoe’s Green Goblin; but there’s a twist, he’s seemingly not an awful guy. He has political aspirations, makes charitable donations, and even supports The Avengers. They’re playing off the idea that it’s a different earth, and no villain or hero is guaranteed to be on the same path.

Marvel plans to explore the MCU’s Osborn over the next three to five years “without putting him in a Goblin outfit” right away. The report says he’ll become the next major villain for Spider-Man and the Avengers in the future.

This project was reportedly finalized just last week, with That Hashtag Show saying that Marvel might have time to squeeze the character into a No Way Home cameo or post-credits scene. A recent rumor claimed that the puzzling Falcon and the Winter Soldier post-credits scene was originally intended to include Osborn. That’s who the Power Broker (Emily VanCamp) might have been talking to on the phone.

The MCU’s Osborn could appear in movies and TV shows, and a document the blog viewed mentioned Tom Holland’s fourth Spider-Man movie, which has not yet been announced. Marvel reportedly offered the new Osborn role to “a prominent New Yorker who has a history with Marvel Studios,” but the report did not reveal the actor’s identity.

Various No Way Home rumors, including a believable plot leak, indicated that Willem Dafoe will reprise his Osborn role from the Sam Raimi films for Spider-Man 3. He’ll be the big bad guy of the film and he might kill a major character in the movie.

As always, these are all just rumors at this point, so treat them accordingly. But if the report is accurate, then we’re already looking at the kind of recipe that will allow Marvel to bring back fallen Avengers. Just as the MCU’s Norman Osborn is different from the one in the Raimi films, a Tony Stark from the multiverse might be different from the one who lived and died as an Avenger in the main timeline. The same goes for Steve Rogers, Natasha Romanoff, and others.

Chris Smith Senior Writer

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he brings his entertainment expertise to Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises.

Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.