Mysterio always seemed like a tough villain to pull off cinematically. Just the inherent nature of his comic book presence is so deep-seated in illusion and special effects, this obviously presents a challenge both visually and narratively for Spider-Man: Far From Home director Jon Watts.
“Well, we knew we wanted to do Mysterio from the very beginning,” Watts tells Uproxx. “He’s just of that Spider-Man rogue’s gallery. He’s the next one on the list. He’s such an iconic villain. But the trick was how do you do him in a way where he’s not just throwing smoke bombs and jumping around with the springs in his shoes, like he is in the comics? So yeah, that was a challenge.”
And as we see in the Spider-Man: Far From Home trailer, Mysterio (who is perfectly cast with Jake Gyllenhaal) is introduced to Peter Parker as being from an alternate Earth, now here on Peter’s Earth in an effort to stop the Elementals, who have been wreaking havoc across the globe. And, yes, this is very much a different approach to Mysterio.
Watts continues, “But the feeling was that if we can crack this guy, it opens up the door to some pretty amazing visual possibilities, in addition to some, hopefully, relevant semantic ideas as well about what’s real and what’s not. So yeah, it was always going to be Mysterio.”
In the comic books, there have been numerous Mysterios. The first Mysterio (and the one we meet in Far From Home) is Quentin Beck. But did Watts ever consider a different iteration? This wouldn’t be unprecedented in the MCU, as Scott Lang is not the original Ant-Man.
“The other one is Daniel. Daniel Berkhart,” says Watts. “I mean, I went back to just the first appearance of Mysterio and his first appearance in the comic, he shows up as a hero who stops Spider-Man. And shows that he’s the true superhero and that Spider-Man is a menace. So I started with that and wanted to figure out a slightly different interpretation, but that original comic [with Quentin Beck] was the main inspiration.”
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