Marvel’s Spider-Man: Homecoming will come swinging into theaters next week, and one standout component of this new film is the diversity among the cast.
Though Peter Parker himself will be embodied by British actor Tom Holland (who is White) and he’ll have a reluctant mentor in Tony Stark aka Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.) who is also White, the rest of the Spider-Man: Homecoming cast is almost entirely made up of people of color.
At a press conference for the film over the weekend, producer Amy Pascal spoke about why she thought inclusion and diversity was so important. “I would say the inspiration for it was reality,” she explained. In the new film, Peter is still a high school student in Queens, N.Y., which is one the most diverse places in the United States. His classmates in the film are Michelle (Zendaya), Ned (Jacob Batalon), Liz (Laura Harrier) and Flash (Tony Revolori).
Revolori, whose character, Flash, has been portrayed as White in the comic books and in the past Spider-Man films, said of the casting choices, “It’s wonderful. When you see the film, there’s not a single line of exposition as to explain why I look the way I look, and I think that’s wonderful. That I just am in the movie; it’s not about a certain race, it’s not about doing anything. I think that’s the diversity we need in Hollywood now.”
With Tessa Thompson and Idris Elba starring in the upcoming Thor: Ragnarok, and Ryan Coogler’s Black Panther dropping next year, it looks like superhero flicks are getting this whole inclusion thing right.
Spider-Man: Homecoming premieres July 7.