The Marvel Cinematic Universe is undergoing a ton of big changes at the moment, and Zendaya recently brought up an unexpected shift that may occur after the next Spider-Man movie swings into theaters. The actor has been playing Peter Parker’s cynical love interest MJ since 2017’s Spider-Man: Homecoming, but her time in the MCU may come to an end with the third installment in the film series. Following the upcoming Spider-Man: No Way Home, Zendaya said she may be done with Marvel movies.
In a July 9 interview with E!’s Daily Pop, Zendaya revealed she and her co-stars are unsure about their future within the MCU after filming Spider-Man: No Way Home. "We don't know if we're gonna do another one,” Zendaya said. “Normally you do three movies and that's pretty much it, so I think we just were all absorbing and taking the time to just enjoy the moment, being with each other, and being so grateful for that experience."
Zendaya’s comments point to a standing trend within the MCU, wherein most of the main superheroes get a trilogy of standalone movies. The Iron Man films concluded with Iron Man 3, Captain America headlined three solo films, and both the Ant-Man and Guardians of the Galaxy movies are confirmed to mount third movies in Phase Four, after Spider-Man’s third movie drops at the end of 2021. The only outlier so far is the Thor franchise, which has a fourth installment coming in 2022.
Zendaya’s statement about her part within the Marvel universe potentially ending makes sense. Unlike Spider-Man star Tom Holland, Zendaya has not appeared in any of the MCU movies outside of the Spider-Man franchise. Per Disney and Sony’s business negotiations in 2019, the Spider-Man stars were only contracted to make one more appearance in a solo film, aka No Way Home.
Not to mention the fact that Zendaya is one of the busiest working actors at the moment. In addition to helming the buzzy HBO drama Euphoria, she is also in two massive new movies this year: the Space Jam sequel Space Jam: A New Legacy, and the long-awaited film adaptation of Dune.
With Marvel’s fourth phase just beginning, superhero fans can rest assured Holland’s Spider-Man will keep swinging around in the MCU, but MJ may be peacing out soon.
Spider-Man: No Way Home will hit theaters on Dec. 17.