Warning: This post contains spoilers for Spider-Man: Homecoming, including the end-credits scenes.
It seems fair that Peter wants to impress her on their first real date, after they’ve finally confessed their feelings for each other on a bridge in Prague and escaped certain death by water monster and/or Mysterio; and fair, too, that after being taken on a dizzying, sky-scraping Spidey ride, Zendaya’s MJ would very much like to never do it again.
Speaking to EW a few days before the film’s release, she laughed out loud at the Jasmine and Aladdin comparison: “Yeah, exactly! That’s [director] Jon Watts’ thing, that you always see [these scenes] in the movies and it looks like this amazing beautiful experience. But if in real life you’re swinging from buildings by, you know, a piece of web, you’d be freaking the eff out. Like, you’d be losing your mind — ‘Put me down, what are you doing?!’ So I think any person who realistically wants to live doesn’t want to do that.”
For the 22-year-old Euphoria star, though, it was also just more happy proof that her character didn’t have to play to the tropes of how “the girl” in a movie like this should be — gazing in mute, agreeable wonder at her super-powered paramour.
“I didn’t want her to have to change to be the love interest, or to have to become a different person for Peter to see anything in her,” she says. “And I think the cool part is that in this he likes her for all of her quirks and the weird things she’s into, the things that her whole life have made her a little bit of a loner. I think he’s a little bit of a loner too, and that’s why they find that connection.”
“I just didn’t want her to go through some kind of glamorous change and now people care about her, instead just making her super cool and strong and exactly the kind of person she is, and then we fall in love with her that way. Which I think is so much cooler because there are so many different dynamic versions of women, and I think it’s important that we show more than just one kind you know? She’s figuring it out on her own and she’s very strong in her sense of self — even she’s only 16 years old, she’s very much who she is.”
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