The Amazing Spider-Man movies starring Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone are widely considered a low point for the webbed wall crawler's movie legacy. But the series is still notable for introducing the live-action version of popular Spider-Man foe Lizard. Concept artist Jerad S. Marantz, who helped bring the character to life for The Amazing Spider-Man, recently shared unused concept designs for Lizard, in the process revealing that actor Michael Fassbender was once in the running to play the part.
The design shows a Lizard that is simultaneously more human and yet somehow more disturbing than the version we got to see onscreen. This Lizard has a face that resembles his human form, while the final design kept a much more animalistic look for the face. The body also appears to be less buff and more lizard-life, with heavy folds of scaly skin and narrower shoulders. Perhaps it was because this design was so disturbing that the studio decided to go with a less threatening but more generic look.
The origin of the Lizard in some ways parallels that of Peter Parker. Both are brilliant scientists who developed superpowers after close contact with enhanced animal experimentation. In Peter's case, it was from a spider bite, while for Dr. Curt Connors, his experiments with regrowing his lost arm by mimicking the regenerative abilities of lizards resulted in a dangerous side effect which transformed him into a hulking, lizard/human hybrid.
The Lizard is usually portrayed as a sympathetic figure, a good man gone down the wrong path in his quest for personal fulfillment. That is how actor Rhys Ifans portrayed the character in the live-action film. If Michael Fassbender has done the role, it is possible he would have injected a bit more of an edge into the character, as is the case with most Fassbender roles.
It is unclear why the studio passed on Michael Fassbender in favor of Ifans, but that ended up being a good thing for the former. Instead, he went on to portray a far more interesting character in the Marvel universe: the younger version of the conflicted villain and Charles Xavier's frenemy Magneto.
While the Amazing Spider-Man series is done and dusted, the X-Men series is still fresh in people's minds. Now that the mutant group belongs to Disney, they will soon appear in the MCU, and there are rumors that the studio is considering keeping popular actors in their roles, like Fassbender as Magneto and James McAvoy as Xavier.
Meanwhile, Spider-Man is once again in the hands of Sony, and they are wasting no time introducing the character to his rogue's gallery. The studio seems to be gearing up for a Sinister Six film, which means the Lizard might once again be making its way back to the big screen. Sony's immediate priority, however, is to bring together Tom Holland and Tom Hardy for a Spider-Man/ Venom crossover film in the near future.