Turns Out, One MCU Actor Nearly Missed Out On Appearing In Tom Holland's Spider-Man Franchise

Jon Favreau as Happy Hogan in Spider-Man: No Way Home
(Image credit: Sony/ Marvel Studios)

Spoilers ahead for Spider-Man: No Way Home.

The Marvel Cinematic Universe is a constantly expanding place, but a few titles have stood out for their massive box office appeal. Jon Watts’ Spider-Man: No Way Home is definitely in that category, breaking records for its opening weekend performance. But it turns out that one MCU actor nearly missed out in appearing in Tom Holland’s trilogy of Spidey movies.

Sony and Marvel’s current Spider-Man trilogy has been interesting, partly due to the various characters that have factored into the story. Jon Favreau’s Happy Hogan has a role in all three blockbusters, although it turns out out that he was nearly killed off back in Iron Man 3. Kevin Feige opened up about this near-death experience for Happy, saying:

There was a little difference in the script than the final movie, which was that Happy died. Jon had a note — that is one of the most important notes he gave us at Marvel — which was, 'What if Happy was severely injured but did not die?'

Talk about FOMO. It’s hard to imagine the overall MCU without Happy Hogan, and especially Tom Holland’s three solo Spider-Man movies. So let’s all thank our lucky stars that the idea of killing Jon Favreau’s character was ultimately left on the cutting room floor before Iron Man 3’s release back in 2013.

Kevin Feige’s comments from a recent TikTok (via Comic Book) are sure to blow the collective minds of Marvel fans out there. While Happy Hogan isn’t in a super suit and engaging directly with the main action of the MCU, he’s been a connective thread throughout the massive franchise. What’s more, he had a special relationship with Tom Holland’s Peter Parker, which grew over the years.

Of course, Jon Favreau himself had some thoughts about his character’s near death in Iron Man 3. He made his debut as Happy Hogan back in the first Iron Man movie (which he also directed), and has appeared in a whopping seven movies in the shared universe so far. As the actor-director put it,

He's not lying! It's true, it's true. They accommodated it, and I'm so happy I've been a part of this and being able to be there with Tom Holland since the beginning. He's such a pleasure to work with, and [Spider-Man director] Jon Watts, who is incredibly talented, it's just fun to continue this relationship [with Marvel Studios]. It is a big part of my life, and these people are friends and also people I work with.

Personally, I was a bit worried that Happy might be killed off throughout the course of Spider-Man: No Way Home. Particularly in the scene where he’s caught by the police, complete with laser scopes pointed at Jon Favreau’s signature character. Luckily that wasn’t the case, although he eventually lost all memory of his relationship with Peter Parker.

It should be interesting to see what comes next in the MCU for Happy Hogan, who is probably sick of seeing his loved ones perish. Luckily the character is alive and well, and therefore able to return to the big screen when a story calls for it. We’ll just have to see if/when Tom Holland’s Peter Parker ends up appearing next.

Spider-Man: No Way Home is in theaters now, and making a ton of money at the box office. Be sure to check out the 2022 movie release dates to plan your next movie experience.

Corey Chichizola
Movies Editor

Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Double majored in theater and literature during undergrad. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBlend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his favorite actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid.