Why The Amazing Spider-Man 3 Might Not Be A Bad Box Office Bet

There has been much discussion in recent days for various reasons regarding Andrew Garfield and his tenure as Peter Parker in "The Amazing Spider-Man" movies. Without getting into spoiler territory, much of this has to do with the release of "Spider-Man: No Way Home," which has been on a record-shattering tear at the box office. To that point, it seems like now more than ever Sony Pictures will look to double down on the "Spider-Man" franchise, and that might require getting creative.

While nothing has been confirmed by any stretch of the imagination, rumors are circulating that the studio is potentially looking at Garfield for multiple projects within the great "Spider-Man" franchise, and people on Twitter have been calling to see "The Amazing Spider-Man 3" happen. Even just a few years ago, this would have seemed downright laughable. Now? It actually may be a pretty good box office bet for Sony, and I'm going to go over why.

The Amazing Spider-Man Movies Both Made Good Money

Andrew Garfield had the unenviable task of following in the footsteps of Tobey Maguire, who had played the iconic Marvel superhero in the Sam Raimi "Spider-Man" trilogy. While "Spider-Man 3" left much to be desired, the world fell in love with that iteration of the character, and a fourth entry was in the cards until Sony opted to go with a reboot instead. That reboot starred Garfield and came in the form of director Marc Webb's "The Amazing Spider-Man" in 2012.

While it retold the familiar origin story and featured an underwhelming villain in Lizard, it was met with mostly positive reviews and managed to earn a very solid $757 million at the global box office. Its $220 million budget was a bit of a hindrance, but that's still a return on investment that any studio in Hollywood would take. As such, "The Amazing Spider-Man 2" was quickly put into development. It became an over-stuffed trainwreck that remains the worst-reviewed movie in the history of the franchise.

But, speaking from a strictly financial point of view, released in 2014, it still earned $708 million worldwide against a $200 million budget. It was the lowest-grossing live-action entry in the series but, again, it still made a good deal of money. In a Hollywood reshaped greatly by the pandemic, those returns are very attractive to most studios right now. A lot can change in seven years.

A Lot of Good Will Has Been Built-Up

"The Amazing Spider-Man 3" had been put into development, in addition to a slew of spin-offs, including a "Sinister Six" film and (God help us) an Aunt May solo movie. Much of the studio's plans came to light in the famous Sony email leaks. These leaks, coupled with the underwhelming response to "TAMS2" ultimately paved the way for the deal between Sony and Disney that allowed for Tom Holland's version of the character to arrive in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, kicking off with his appearance in "Captain America: Civil War." The rest is box office history.

In the years since Holland took over, he's found a great deal of love, aided in no small part by the fact that he gets to exist alongside his fellow heroes in the MCU. But also in that time, a great deal of fondness has been expressed for Garfield and his take on the character. Love or hate those movies, it does certainly feel as though the actor didn't get a fair shake, and given how excellent he's proven himself to be in other movies, many have started to wonder what could have been.

That being the case, if Sony were to revisit Garfield's corner of the universe, time may have healed some of those wounds left behind by Jamie Foxx's blue Electro and Paul Giamatti's ridiculous Rhino in "The Amazing Spider-Man 2." The studio could, in theory, advance the story several years, gloss over some of the questionable elements of those last two movies, and give Garfield a fresh start of sorts. Given the goodwill and the fact that both previous movies made a lot of money, there's reason to think this could work. Not to mention that "Spider-Man: No Way Home" is on track to become the first $1 billion blockbusters since the pandemic. "Spider-Man," as a franchise, is bigger than it's ever been. If we can have multiple Batmans, why not multiple Spider-Mans?

It's Not the Only Game In Town Anymore

It's no secret that both Marvel Studios and Sony have been exploring the Marvel multiverse as a big concept. "No Way Home" brought villains from previous incarnations of the franchise into the MCU, next year's "Morbius" is clearly playing in that sandbox, and "Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness" is going to double down in a big way. Not to mention that "Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse" was a huge, Oscar-winning hit. The multiverse is something audiences have proved that they're on board for.

With that in mind, it changes the narrative behind "The Amazing Spider-Man 3" as it might have existed. It is no longer the only game in town. We can get Holland's continued adventures as Peter Parker in the MCU, while Garfield could return in his Earth, in his franchise, elsewhere in the multiverse. There is no reason we can't have both things anymore. Superhero cinema continues to be the most reliable bet at the box office, and Sony controls the rights to the most popular superhero on the planet. Given the state of things, wouldn't it make sense to see if they can double down and put more out into the world?

There is no guarantee that a third Garfield "Spider-Man" movie is going to happen, and there is no guarantee that it would be a success. That having been said, perhaps more than ever before, the idea seems like a calculated risk worth taking, and one that could pave the way for an ever-expansive universe connected to the webslinger that might actually work. This is, at the very least, a better idea than (all due respect) giving Aunt May a solo film.