Fans of the Spider-Man franchise were left stunned and disappointed Tuesday when news surfaced that Tom Holland, the latest actor to play Peter Parker on the big screen, may no longer be involved in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
BuzzFeed News confirmed that Marvel Studios is parting ways with Holland's iteration of the character, which had been on loan from Sony Pictures since 2015, due to a dispute about money.
Disney, which owns Marvel, suggested an equal cofinancing agreement between it and Sony, according to Deadline, the first outlet to report the news. This would mean the studios would split profits 50/50 as well. When Sony declined this offer, Disney acted by removing Kevin Feige — the president of Marvel Studios who has had tremendous success with the latest Spidey iteration — as a producer on future films featuring the famous webslinger.
Sony said in a series of tweets on Tuesday evening that much of the discussion surrounding this profit-sharing dispute has been "mischaracterized," especially when it came to Feige's role in all of this.
"We are disappointed, but respect Disney’s decision not to have him continue as a lead producer of our next live action Spider-Man film," the studio said, adding that it hopes "this might change in the future."
Amid the shock, sadness, and uncertainty, fans did the only thing they could do: laugh to keep from crying.
One fan described the news as being just the latest tragedy that comic fans have had to endure this summer, following the conclusion of Avengers: Endgame.
Others imagined how the conversation between the two studios went, using a very funny and bizarre interview between Jenny McCarthy and Tara Reid from 2016.
People considered Spidey's ousting from the MCU as a slap in the face to the late Stan Lee, the superhero's co-creator, who once called Holland "a great Spider-Man."
Folks envisioned Sony dramatically snatching Spidey back from Marvel Studios' clutches...
...right after the latest Holland-led Spider-Man film, Far From Home, performed incredibly well at the box office.
The news comes at an interesting time, considering Holland's Spidey was being touted as someone who might fill Iron Man's shoes. But it seems that may have been all for naught.
Some imagined Holland was freaking out about the news just like his legion of loyal fans.
Maybe his costar Zendaya, who plays MJ, can get him a supporting role on her hit HBO show now?
People thought about Sony's role in all the Spider-Man films to date — like the third movie in Tobey Maguire's time in the franchise, which was panned, and Andrew Garfield's turn as Spidey, which was met with mixed reviews.
Now fans fear Holland is being done dirty by Sony.
In fact, it does seem like there's a pattern where things go a little haywire every time Spidey is supposed to star in a third film.
Are we going to have to go back and reboot all over again? Poor Uncle Ben.
Jokes aside, negotiations between Sony and Disney are still happening. So there is a bit of hope that the studios could reach an agreement that satisfies everyone.
We'll just have to wait and see.