See What James Cameron’s Spider-Man Looks Like In Unmade Movie Art

Old concept art from James Cameron's unmade Spider-Man movie surfaces online.

By Douglas Helm | Updated

gay spider-man no way home

Back in the 1990s, James Cameron almost made a Spider-Man film but it ended up being canceled. Although script details of the film have been leaked over the years, there haven’t been too many visual remnants of the doomed project. However, last year Cameron released a book titled Tech Noir: The Art of James Cameron which included the below drawings of his version of Spidey.

While the leaked script details of James Cameron’s Spider-Man film never said anything about the black suit or Venom, it appears Cameron might have been playing the long game and planning for future films. The first picture clearly depicts the classic red and blue Spidey suit while the second looks like the black symbiote suit Peter dons before it separates from him and bonds with Eddie Brock to become Venom. While we may never get to see Cameron’s version of Spidey on the big screen, it is cool to get a glimpse into his creative process.

It would have been interesting to see James Cameron bring a Spider-Man film to the screen, but it might be for the best that the project never panned out. For one, we might not have the Sam Raimi and Tobey Maguire films, which are widely considered some of the best superhero films of all time. Also, we got to see Maguire return in glorious fashion when he teamed up with Andrew Garfield and Tom Holland for Spider-Man: No Way Home.

tobey maguire spider-man
Tobey Maguire in Spider-Man: No Way Home (2021)

The other reason is that the James Cameron Spider-Man film seemed truly wild on paper. According to the script leaks collected over the years, the film was heavy on profanity and included a graphic sex scene with Mary Jane Watson, possibly earning the film an R rating. In other words, it wouldn’t be quite the family-friendly comic book movie that you would expect from your friendly neighborhood Spider-Man.

The James Cameron Spider-Man film would have had Electro and Sandman as the main villains, although they wouldn’t be called by their villain names in the script. Arnold Schwarzenegger was also supposedly going to cameo in the movie as Otto Octavius, setting him up as Doctor Octopus for future films. Casting rumors differ based on the source, but most sources agree that Leonardo DiCaprio would have played Peter Parker, Lance Henriksen would have played Carlton Strand (the Electro character), and Michael Biehn would have played Boyd (the Sandman character).

Interestingly, David Koepp did crib several elements from the James Cameron Spider-Man script for the 2002 Raimi film. Namely, making Peter’s webs organic. This is in contrast to the comic-book webs, which Peter invents and makes at home.

While James Cameron never got to make his Spider-Man film, he’s likely plenty pleased with the current phase of his career. The director recently released his Avatar sequel Avatar: The Way of Water, which crossed the $1 billion global box office mark in just two weeks. The film is on track to make a good amount more before leaving theaters and there are several sequels planned for the Avatar franchise if this film meets expectations.