Kelly Port, a visual effects artist for Spider-Man: No Way Home, shared his theory on how the infamous leak of Andrew Garfield’s Spider-Man was circulated before the blockbuster debuted in theaters.
Port, who works as a visual effects supervisor at Digital Domain, explained in a chat with Corridor Crew that he believes that an “out-sourced vendor” was responsible for the leak. He discussed that “the preventative medicine” of a large watermark pasted on top of the leaked image and video by Marvel Studios was not an effective deterrent to keep them under wraps. The image and video in question featured Garfield donning his Spider-Man costume while crouching on top of construction scaffolding against a blue screen backdrop. This was a huge problem for Marvel Studios as Garfield’s appearance as his version of Spider-Man in the film was being kept a secret before Spider-Man: No Way Home was officially released.
“It’s just thousands of people. Like, our visual effects team was by far our biggest team there is, and often the leaks don’t necessarily come from VFX,” Port said. “In this case, I think they did, or an out-sourced vendor is where I think [the leak] really came from. I think the main thing that keeps people from doing it is just, they’re gonna lose their job, like, forever. As a studio, when Marvel/Sony sends over a sequence to a visual effects studio to begin work, we call that a turnover. And then when they get that, it’s usually sent as a sequence, and your name is watermarked across the whole thing… that’s sort of the preventative medicine.”
Spider-Man: No Way Home centers around the MCU’s Peter Parker (Tom Holland) as he seeks assistance from Benedict Cumberbatch’s Doctor Strange to cast a memory-erasing spell so that everyone forgets the teenage superhero’s secret identity after he was unmasked in the previous Spider-Man film, Spider-Man: Far From Home. Things quickly go awry when the former Sorcerer Supreme’s magic rips the fabric of the multiverse apart and different villains from alternate realities begin to invade Peter’s home.
No Way Home saw Garfield and Tobey Maguire reprise their respective roles as Spider-Man/Peter Parker from the Marc Webb and Sam Raimi film franchises. Garfield, in particular, lied about his role in the Marvel/Sony film for almost two years up until the film’s release in theaters in December 2021.
“Yeah, I lied to people for a good two years and I lied to the internet for two years, and it felt great,” Garfield said. “It was fun to keep it secret,” he continued, comparing it to throwing a surprise birthday party. “So, it felt like I was part of organizing a surprise birthday party for a bunch of people who I knew would appreciate it.”
Spider-Man: No Way Home can be purchased digitally on platforms like Amazon, Google Play and Apple. The multiverse will be further explored in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, which will hit theaters on May 6.
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