The recently released Spider-Man: No Way Home features a ton of throwbacks and homages to the past Spider-Man films. According to the writers of the film, striking the balance between fan service and adding in too much.
Screenwriters Chris McKenna and Erik Sommers recently spoke with DiscussingFilm about their work on the hit film and were asked about how they decided which lines and callbacks from past Spider-Man films would be included in No Way Home. Sommers noted that there is a balancing act that has to take place when adding in fan service.
“I mean, it’s a balancing act because we love those previous movies, the Sam Raimi and Marc Webb ones, and we want to pay homage to them and make the fans happy,” Sommers said. “But you don’t want to just do lazy fan service for its own sake because it’ll ring false at some point. It’s a balancing act and at every point, again, you have to be thinking about the story. So if you really want to hear this villain say the line that he said in that other movie, you can’t let that drive you in terms of finding a moment for that. If you just go looking for that and you spend all this time, you’re going to end up writing some scene that maybe doesn’t even need to be in the movie.
“You just have to keep focused on telling Peter Parker’s story, and then hope that you find opportunities for those moments in there. We were working with a lot of smart and talented people, and just poring over these moments again and again, crafting things and trying to find those moments where we could include that kind of stuff in a way that felt like it was organic. We weren’t just doing it for its own sake.”
Thankfully for the duo, it seems like fans universally loved the film and its many nods to the seven past Spider-Man films. With No Way Home performing ridiculously well at the box office, as well, it only goes to strengthen the notion that fans do love a bit of nostalgia every now and again.
Spider-Man: No Way Home saw the return of Tom Holland as the beloved titular wall-crawler, who was joined by Benedict Cumberbatch’s Doctor Strange. The threequel also featured the return of Spider-Man vets J.K. Simmons (Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man trilogy) as J. Jonah Jameson, Alfred Molina (Spider-Man 2) as Doc Ock, Willem Dafoe (Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man trilogy) as the Green Goblin, Jamie Foxx (The Amazing Spider-Man 2) as Electro, Thomas Haden Church (Spider-Man 3) as Sandman, and Rhys Ifans (The Amazing Spider-Man) as Lizard.