By Devan Coggan
May 06, 2019 at 06:54 PM EDT

For months, Spider-Man: Far From Home has been shrouded in mystery, wrapped up tighter than a bad guy in Spidey’s webs. A second standalone film starring Tom Holland‘s Peter Parker has been in the works for years, greenlit before 2017’s Spider-Man: Homecoming even debuted. But as the sequel got closer, fans were puzzling over what it could be about — or how it could even exist. After all, Holland’s Peter met his demise in 2018’s Avengers: Infinity War, a victim of Thanos’ universe-altering snap. How can you have a Spider-Man movie, when Spider-Man got turned to dust?

Monday’s new trailer for Far From Home (out July 2) finally answers some of those questions — and raises even more. The new trailer teases a Marvel Cinematic Universe that has irrevocably changed and a Spider-Man who will have to step up to take on new threats. The details lie with the events of the just-released Avengers: Endgame, events that are so spoiler-y, Holland had to record a short intro to the Far From Home trailer warning fans who hadn’t yet seen Endgame.

Now that some of Far From Home’s details are out in the open, EW caught up with director Jon Watts to get the breakdown on that new trailer.

“It was always acknowledged that our movie was going to happen right after [Endgame], and there were going to be a lot of unanswered questions and a lot of repercussions,” Watts explains. “[The question was], how do we make a movie that’s in that world and deals with those stories but is also still the fun Spider-Man movie that we want to see? So that was a fun creative challenge for us.”

***Spoilers for Avengers: Endgame follow.***

Sony Pictures

The primary plot of Far From Home is Peter’s upcoming trip to Europe with his classmates. But as the trailer opens, the biggest shadow looming over his life is the recent loss of his mentor Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.), who sacrificed himself to defeat Thanos. The first Far From Home trailer hinted at Tony’s absence — a prominent role for Happy Hogan (Jon Favreau), a check from the Stark Foundation signed by Pepper Potts — but this new footage finds Peter in full mourning. Tony Stark helped teach him how to be a hero, but surely he had years of additional lessons to share.

And although Far From Home centers on how Peter is responding to Tony’s loss, it will also explore how the rest of the world is coping, too. (The trailer includes a poignant memorial mural to the fallen hero.)

“We saw how the various individuals reacted to [Tony’s death at the end of Endgame], but we haven’t seen the global fallout at all,” Watts says.

Sony Pictures

There’s also the question of how the millions of snapped people will reintegrate into society. When the Hulk wielded the Infinity Gauntlet in Endgame, he brought everyone back exactly as they had been pre-Thanos. The only problem is that everyone else has still been living — and aging — for the last five years.

For adults and ageless superheroes, a five-year age gap isn’t as big a deal, but when you’re in high school, that’s a pretty major shift. Watts confirmed that Jacob Batalon’s Ned, Zendaya’s MJ, and Tony Revolori’s Flash were all snapped, but some of Peter’s classmates were left behind, and they’re now all five years older.

He compared it to 1986’s Flight of the Navigator, about a boy who disappears and reemerges after eight years, having not aged a day. (He returns home to find his younger brother is now several years older.) “That’s a really weird situation to find yourself in, but it’s also something you can have a lot of fun with, too,” Watts says.

And as if age gaps and Tony’s death weren’t enough for poor Peter to deal with, Far From Home introduces a new enemy: the mysterious Elementals, who are terrorizing the world. Fortunately, Peter has a new ally in the form of Jake Gyllenhaal‘s Quentin Beck, nickname Mysterio.

The trailer reveals that according to Quentin, he’s a hero from another universe. Apparently, the use of the Infinity Gauntlet “tore a hole in our dimension” and has led to some unexpected crossovers. “Endgame opened up the possibilities for a much, much larger universe,” Watts teases. “All that stuff sort of converged in the perfect way for us.”

Sony Pictures

Mysterio made his comics debut back in 1969 as an adversary to Spider-Man, a  stuntman who used his special effects expertise to frame Spider-Man for crimes. In Far From Home, however, he and Peter have a far friendlier relationship — not unlike the friendship Peter once had with Tony.

“What I wanted to do was bring this iconic character into the world in a way that people weren’t expecting,” Watts says. “And Mysterio as the hero is definitely something that we haven’t seen before. The idea of Spider-Man, Mysterio, and Nick Fury teaming up to take on this global threat of the Elementals was really exciting.”

Speaking of Nick Fury, Samuel L. Jackson is also making a return as everyone’s favorite eyepatch-wearing super spy. It’s Fury who recruits a reluctant Peter to help fight the Elementals, his 11th big-screen appearance in as many years. “It was great to have [Jackson] on set intimidating everyone,” Watts says with a laugh. “It was just like Nick Fury was actually there, keeping everyone on their toes.”

And although Fury seems eager to get down to business and work with Spider-Man, he’s also coping with the emotional aftermath of Endgame. 

“He’s been gone for five years, too,” Watts explains. “He’s the guy who’s always known everything about everything. He’s the guy who created the Avengers, and now here he is, returning after five years and seeing a very, very different world. So that’s a situation we’ve never seen him in before. The guy who’s always been in control not having the same level of control is interesting.”

Sony Pictures

There are other questions, too, but we’ll have to wait until Far From Home hits theaters in July to get answers. But for now, Watts is just relieved that he can finally talk about his new movie without inadvertently spoiling Endgame. He says he’s known the plots of Endgame and Infinity War for years, and he worked closely with directors Joe and Anthony Russo to coordinate how their films will affect Spider-Man’s story in Far From Home.

“It’s so nice that the trailer’s out and now that people have seen Endgame, I don’t have to carry this around with me,” he says with a laugh. “You’re always worried that you’re going to say something to the wrong person or forget that someone doesn’t know or say something to a journalist. I didn’t want Joe and Anthony Russo showing up at my house in the middle of the night!”

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