Over the course of the last several weeks, the cast of Spider-Man: Homecoming has absolutely exploded, adding talent left and right to the point where it became a little difficult to keep track of. The casting announcements have settled down as shooting is well underway in Atlanta, but now comes the process of trying to figure out who exactly everyone is playing. It looks like we may be able to cross one name off the board, as a source claims to know who newcomer Angourie Rice is playing in the movie.
According to the fan site Marvelous Realm, The Nice Guys actress will be taking on the role of Betty Brant, who first made an appearance in The Amazing Spider-Man #4. Brant is one of the earliest characters to appear in Spider-Man comic books and has been tremendously important to several story lines throughout the wall crawler's history. Here is what the article had to say about it.
"My source, who's been proven to be extremely accurate, indicated that Betty Brant will be played by Angourie Rice."
Obviously a website with a very modest following claiming to have information from an unnamed source needs to be taken with a very sizable grain of salt. That being said, Betty Brant would make a reasonable amount of sense for Rice in Spider-Man: Homecoming. Originally, Brant and Peter Parker meet at The Daily Bugle, but we know from the footage that was shown at San Diego Comic-Con over the weekend that they are classmates in this particular story. That isn't a change that would be overly problematic, but other aspects of Rice playing the character might be.
In the other Spider-Man movies we have seen, Peter Parker's love interests such as Mary Jane Watson and Gwen Stacy have already been explored. For a time, Brant and Parker were romantically involved in the comics, so that could be the direction director Jon Watts is heading with it. The potential problem comes into play on the practical side of things. Tom Holland may look young enough to play a 15-year-old version of Peter Parker, but he is actually 20. Rice, on the other hand, is actually 15. So, the idea of having them be romantically involved in any way on screen could be a bit uncomfortable. But there is no guarantee the two are going to be romantic in any way, but it is possible.
Outside of any romantic involvement with Parker, Brant has been tied to a number of very big story lines over the years in the Spider-Man comics, even though she never becomes a hero or a villain herself. At one point, her brother dies during a fight between Spider-Man and Doctor Octopus, which creates a lot of tension between Brant and Spidey. Perhaps the most significant storyline that Brant is tied to is that of the Hobgoblin. Eventually, Brant married Ned Leeds, a reporter for The Daily Bugle, who is at one point revealed to be the villain Hobgoblin, sort of. The Hobgoblin's identity was always messy, and Leeds was brainwashed to be the Hobgoblin by the real Hobgoblin. But it is still significant, especially considering that Marvelous Realm also claims in a separate report that Leeds is also set to appear in Spider-Man: Homecoming, with the character to be played by Jacob Batalon.
Betty Brant already appeared in Sam Raimi's Spider-Man trilogy and was portrayed by Elizabeth Banks. There were gentle touches of her and Peter being attracted to one another in those movies, but the relationship will clearly be very different in this movie, given the age difference and the fact that they know one another from school. We will be sure to keep you updated as more casting news for the movie becomes available. Spider-Man: Homecoming is set to hit theaters on July 7, 2017.