In a recent GQ profile on Tom Holland, Spider-Man producer Amy Pascal told the outlet that she wanted the actor to play Fred Astaire in an upcoming film. It was a suggestion that writer Oliver Franklin-Wallis described as a “rare perfect casting.” And now it’s confirmed: the MCU actor will trade his Spidey suit for dancing shoes.
While stopping to chat with Associate Press at the premiere of Spider-Man: No Way Home in London, the actor said, “I am playing Fred Astaire, yeah.”
He also confirmed that Pascal, in part, helped him secure the role. “The script came in a week ago. I haven’t read it yet, I know that Amy Pascal has the script. She FaceTimed me earlier, I was in the bath and we had a lovely FaceTime. But I will be playing Fred Astaire.”
Though Holland doesn’t physically resemble the legendary late dancer and actor, he’s a shoe-in for the role. He proved his dancing chops in the viral Lip Sync Battle performance, where he paid homage to another classic musical legend: Gene Kelly, with a spectacle that mashed “Singin’ In The Rain” with Rihanna’s “Umbrella.”
He also has other dancing experience, as he starred in Billy Elliot as Michael—Billy’s best friend—on London’s West End from 2008 until 2010. He got that big role after talent scouts for Billy Elliot found him at a dance recital of his hip hop class at Nifty Feet.
While it’s exciting to think about Holland dancing again, there’s one caveat: Astaire never wanted to have a movie made about him, or have someone portray his likeness. In the biography written by Tim Satchell, Astaire: The Definitive Biography, it’s said there’s a clause in his will that he cannot be portrayed in films. It’s unclear how the film will skirt honoring Astaire and his family’s wishes.