Exclusive: Tom Holland In Talks For Tarzan Live-Action Reboot

Tom Holland may star as Lord Greystoke aka Tarzan in a new Sony Pictures film.

By Nathan Kamal | Updated

tom holland tarzan

Tom Holland is currently in negotiations with Sony Pictures to star in a new live-action Tarzan movie, which would be the most recent reboot since 2016’s The Legend of Tarzan. According to our trusted and proven sources, the Spider-Man actor may be the latest actor to portray the Edgar Rice Burroughs character, who first appeared in print in 1912. 

Tom Holland is currently riding high on the success of his role in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but he seems to be trying to diversify his roles rather than be typecast as Peter Parker. While Tom Holland as Tarzan is not exactly the role we would expect for the Cherry actor, he also seems to have an interest in pulp-adjacent stories of adventure. 

Most recently, Tom Holland starred in the film adaptation of the popular video game Uncharted alongside Mark Wahlberg and Antonio Banderas, portraying the young fortune hunter Nathan Drake. The movie is heavily indebted to the cinematic adventures of Harrison Ford’s Indiana Jones, which itself is basically an extended homage to the pulp movie serials of the 1930s and 1940s. During that same period, movie serials featuring Tarzan, the so-called king of the jungle, were immensely popular, so you can see the parallel we are drawing here.

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However, this does raise the question of what audiences might want out of seeing Tom Holland as John Clayton II, Viscount Greystoke aka Tarzan. There have been literally dozens of movies (and innumerable television shows, books, comics, radio shows, video games, and any other kind of media you can imagine) featuring Tarzan, which can be taken in two ways.

One, which Sony Pictures presumably is banking on, is that the century-plus history of Tarzan means name-brand recognition which could draw in audiences. Two, which might not bode well for Tom Holland as Tarzan, people might have finally gotten their fill of the jungle adventurer.

For example, the 2016 film The Legend of Tarzan starred two incredibly hot actors in Alexander Skarsgard and Margot Robbie, supported by a cast of ringers including Christoph Waltz, Samuel L. Jackson, and Djimon Hounsou, was produced by Warner Bros. Pictures, and grossed over $350 million. Despite all of that, the film could charitably be described as “utterly forgotten.” 

At this point in our cultural history, we might just have had enough of Lord Greystoke, not to mention all the problematic elements of a White British lord being raised by gorillas to essentially become the most awesome person in Africa. A potential Sony Pictures Tarzan project brings to mind the 2012 Disney flop John Carter, in which Taylor Kitsch played a different Edgar Rice Burroughs character who happened to be a White man who becomes the most awesome person on Mars. Notoriously, the movie bombed so hard in theaters that it singlehandedly put the Walt Disney Company in the red for an entire quarter.

Hopefully, a Tom Holland Tarzan movie would not suffer the same fate at the box office. Tread carefully, Mr. Holland.