Paul Giamatti is negotiating to join the already large cast of The Amazing Spider-Man 2 playing the Rhino. THR also says Felicity Jones is negotiating for an unannounced role. The Rhino was introduced in 1966’s Amazing Spider-Man #41 as a Communist thug named Aleksei Mikhailovich Sytsevich [Gesundheit] who gained super-strength and super-speed from a suit resembling a rhinoceros. Oh man, when we wear a rhinoceros suit in public, all we get are empty seats on the bus.
The Rhino was a more sympathetic character in later comics, sometimes assisting Spider-Man. It’s unclear which version Paul Giamatti is negotiating to play, but there are rumors.
Latino Review has some interesting theories on where the casting of Giamatti as Rhino is headed. Here’s the abbreviated version: Rhino actually appears in the Amazing Spider-Man video game tie-in, as the result of an ill-advised experiment by Rajit Ratha (Irrfan Khan); he can also be spotted on the DNA tree in the lab along with the Scorpion. LR’s favorite theory is that Giamatti will play a non-superpowered version of the Rhino, highlighting the dark consequences of some of Oscorp’s work. [/film]
I seriously want to hear Paul Giamatti stampeding around a cage while yelling, “Oh suuuure, I turn into the only Oscorp animal-human hybrid with NO SUPERPOWERS. Suuure. Great. Of course this would happen to me. F–king wonderful!” And if that isn’t in Amazing Spider-Man 2, maybe we can get James Adomian to perform it as Paul Giamatti.
It should be noted Giamatti has been trying to be cast as the Rhino for at least two years. He told ShowbizSpy in March of 2011, “If they ever go with The Rhino, I would be ready and waiting.” In the same month, he also talked about Rhino to Conan O’Brien, as seen in this video Matt Singer (via /film) tipped us to.