It's confirmed: Jake Gyllenhaal is playing Mysterio in Spider-Man: Far from Home. This is far from the first we've heard of this particular casting and it's arguably been one of the worst kept "secrets" in the Marvel Cinematic Universe currently, as several reports and even some set photos had previously indicated this is happening. However, Neither Marvel Studios, nor Gyllenhaal, had officially confirmed his involvement in the sequel. Until now, that is.
Jake Gyllenhaal, whose previous credits include Brokeback Mountain, Donnie Darko and Zodiac, officially joined Instagram and, for his very first post, decided to cleverly confirm that he's indeed going to suit up as the fan-favorite master of illusion and Marvel bad guy in Spider-Man: Far From Home. There has been talk of bringing the character to the big screen, going back to when Sam Raimi was going to make his version of Spider-Man 4, which never actually came to pass. Gyllenhaal posted a brief and rather humorous video of himself reading The Amazing Spider-Man #311, along with a very self-aware caption.
"I just realized I'm not playing Spider-Man."
For those who may not know, Jake Gyllenhaal actually auditioned for the role of Peter Parker in the first live-action Spider-Man movie, a role that ultimately went to Tobey Maguire. As for the video, there may be more going on here than the actor having fun. The Amazing Spider-Man #311 not only features Mysterio as a villain, but it's a particularly dark issue of the comic, as baddie leads Spidey to believe he's responsible for the violent death of an innocent civilian during a very elaborate, staged illusion involving a giant brick monster. Could Gyllenhaal be hinting that this particular issue will serve as an inspiration for the story in the Homecoming sequel? Maybe. Maybe not. But it's interesting to ponder.
What we know for certain is that Tom Holland, despite being turned into a pile of dust by Thanos at the end of Infinity War, will be back as Peter Parker for a new adventure that will take him overseas to Europe for the first time in the history of the franchise. We also know that the first trailer for Spider-Man: Far From Home is set to arrive this Saturday, meaning we should be getting our first look at Mysterio. And we could find out if this particular comic book will have any influence on the story, depending on how much is revealed in the trailer.
Spider-Man: Homecoming was a very successful reboot of the franchise. Directed by Jon Watts (who returns for the sequel), the movie grossed $880 million worldwide. The sequel has the burden of following up next year's highly-anticipated Avengers 4, which is rather unenviable. But with a terrific actor on board to play such a compelling and beloved villain, it's hard to think the MCU's resident webslinger won't be up to the task. Spider-Man: Far From Home is set to arrive in theaters on July 5, 2019. Be sure to check out Jake Gyllenhaal's Instagram video below.