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NWH Cast Reveals Details On How Willem Dafoe ‘Scared Everyone’

By Mabel Judith Andrady
December 27,2021

Willem Dafoe’s Norman Osborn, a.k.a. the Green Goblin, is one of the many interesting characters in Spider-Man: No Way Home. In 2002’s Spider-Man, Dafoe starred alongside Tobey Maguire as the web-slinger for the first time. For the first time in 19 years, a veteran actor returns to the MCU threateningly, with fans and critics praising his performance.

Dafoe’s Green Goblin was brought to the MCU by Peter Parker’s interference in Doctor Strange’s spell. In the wake of his first appearance in the Sam Raimi-directed film, many agree that Marvel’s return of the iconic villain was much-needed. The stories about Willem Dafoe’s significant presence on and off camera have slowly emerged in the weeks leading up to the premiere of its threequel.

Tom Holland will meet Dafoe’s classic villain. The actor recalled his frightening first encounter with the actor and teased his intense fight scene. Another interesting tidbit about Dafoe has surfaced as the film has crossed the $1 billion mark at the global box office.

An Impressive Performance By Willem Dafoe

Dafoe's Goblin

Spider-Man: No Way Home is starring Marvel Entertainment. Sat down with Tom Holland and Zendaya to discuss Willem Dafoe’s return for the threequel.

It was during the scene where Goblin teased Peter Parker in Happy’s apartment that Holland first admitted that Dafoe was “the first actor I’d ever worked with who was able to give a director so many options. On set, the actor “scared the hell out of everyone,” according to Zendaya, who was in agreement with that assessment.

Holland: “I’ve never worked with an actor who was able to give a director so many options. He has this one speech in the film where he’s talking about Peter’s kind of existential crisis. And he—”

Zendaya: “Scared the hell out of everyone, to be honest.”

The dialogue in this scene goes like this:

“Peter. You’re struggling to have everything you want while the world tries to make you choose.”

Dafoe filmed the scene “30 times, and they were all different,” Holland revealed. While mimicking the Green Goblin’s voice, Zendaya praised Dafoe’s dual nature as both lovely and terrifying:

Holland: “He must have done the scene 30 times and they were all different.”

Zendaya: “The coolest thing is that everyone’s so lovely, and then they just play these very evil characters. He’s so good at just like, just being lovely— you know, ‘Hey how are you?’ And then, [mimics Green Goblin voice,] like whoa.”

The Behind-the-Scenes Spectacle of No Way Home

Green-Goblin-in-Spider-Man-and-Pumpkin-Bomb-in-No-Way-Home

Dafoe’s recent comments from Holland and Zendaya only serve to highlight the actor’s impressive range both onscreen and off. As stated in the interview, NWH’s turning point occurs in this scene. This means that the film must undergo a significant shift. Many fans of the film agree that Willem Dafoe’s chilling performance as the Green Goblin helped solidify the film’s tonal shift.

Dafoe shot the scene “30 times” to prove his commitment to the role. Filming Dafoe’s character may have required him to deliver various lines to achieve the desired outcome. Additionally, it’s worth noting that this scene also features the rest of the movie’s villainous cast. This makes Zendaya’s statement that “everyone” was scared to death more believable. As a result, Dafoe’s portrayal of the Green Goblin stands out from the crowd. This return is only fitting because he is the film’s central antagonist.

NWH has many memorable moments for Willem Dafoe’s portrayal of the Marvel villain. However, it appears that Holland and Zendaya’s remarks about this particular scene will stick out.

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