Spider-Man 2 Set Video Has Willem Dafoe Going Full Doctor Octopus

Willem Dafoe

Comic-book movie fans love debating which chapter of a particular saga is “better.” And when it comes to a character like Spider-Man, they have a lot of options to choose from. No matter when you became a fan of the character, the consensus seems to be that Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man 2, from 2004, ranks near the top of any Spidey film list (if not at the very top, for some). And this cool behind-the-scenes clip seems to suggest that the movie works because the people working on it were having a total blast:

This retro peek behind the curtain comes to us from Twitter user Nick Usen, and we’re unsure why today, of all days, he chose to share it, but we will never pass up an opportunity to see Willem Dafoe cracking up Alfred Molina on the set of the Spider-Man franchise. Dafoe, by this point, was the top dog of Spidey villains, having played Norman Osborn in Sam Raimi’s original film. And he appears to be welcoming Molina on his first day on set, as director is coaching his Doc Ock on how the character should be played.

Alfred Molina loves the tribute. It’s fantastic to see how he reacts to Willem Dafoe hamming it up in the Doctor Octopus tentacles. And it’s even cooler to see the practical effects that went into the creation of Otto Octavius, a brilliant scientist whose ego would lead to a mechanical error that grafts his brilliant creations to his back… and brain.

Remember this classic Sam Raimi origin scene for Otto’s arms?

Spider-Man 2 ranks as the best of the Raimi films, but it goes beyond that. Alfred Molina was so perfect as Spider-Man’s rival, Doctor Octopus, that the series – despite rolling out five Spider-Man films after this fact – never returned to Otto as an adversary. We’ve seen other Goblins on screen, and the MCU Spider-Man (Tom Holland) has faced Shockers, Vultures and a pitch-perfect Mysterio. But the shoes left behind by Molina simply are too large to fill, and so this accurate representation is the only thing we have seen on the big screen… and may ever see, again.

Rumors for a third MCU Spider-Man film swirl around Kraven the Hunter as being the villain. Jon Watts told our ReelBlend podcast that he’d like to do Kraven, while Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige stated that they like bringing villains that have never had a shot at the big screen. That also means Kraven, but we shall see once casting ramps up for that sequel.

In the meantime, how would you rank the Spider-Man films? Hit the comments and post your list. And yes, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse should be included.

Sean O'Connell
Managing Editor

Sean O’Connell is a journalist and CinemaBlend’s Managing Editor. Having been with the site since 2011, Sean interviewed myriad directors, actors and producers, and created ReelBlend, which he proudly cohosts with Jake Hamilton and Kevin McCarthy. And he's the author of RELEASE THE SNYDER CUT, the Spider-Man history book WITH GREAT POWER, and an upcoming book about Bruce Willis.