Spider-Man: No Way Home set the box office on fire by grossing $1.9 billion globally. It was praised for bringing together the three cinematic Spidermen and their villains on the silver screen. While Tom Holland, Tobey Maguire, and Andrew Garfield garnered the most praise, Alfred Molina’s Doc Ock, Jamie Foxx’s Electro, and Willem Dafoe’s Green Goblin performances were also revered. The superhero film obviously used a lot of VFX, not just to show the fight scenes but also to de-age some actors, especially those playing the villains. However, Willem Dafoe wasn’t too impressed with the de-aging done on him.
Willem Dafoe Trashes MCU’s CGI And De-Aging Techniques
During a recent WIRED auto-complete interview, Willem Dafoe answered the most googled questions about himself. One such question was about whether his face was de-aged for Spider-Man: No Way Home. The Green Goblin actor said that he doesn’t think he was de-aged too much. He simultaneously also expressed that Marvel’s de-aging technique isn’t too advanced. Dafoe said:
“No, I don’t think so. Yeah, there were a couple of shots that were really fuzzy. I thought it was silly, because the de-aging thing, they don’t have down yet. And what’s the point? I don’t look that much older, I don’t think, anyway. It’s the creams.”
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In a 2022 interview with The Hollywood Reporter, VFX supervisor Kelly Port, who worked on the movie’s 2,500 VFX shots, said that Dafoe needed minimal de-aging work done on him. As per Port:
“We would take great pains to not lose any facial detail, the high-frequency facial detail, like pores. When you do that, it starts to look airbrushed … so we kept all the detail that was in the original photography.”
He elaborated on the de-aging process and explained that it’s mainly a compositing process where facial tracking is used to give actors younger appearances. For that, wrinkles are removed, skin is tightened up, etc. Port said that it’s quite a time-consuming process.
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Will Willem Dafoe Return As The Green Goblin?
During the WIRED interview, Willem Dafoe was also asked if he will return as Norman Osborn or Green Goblin again. He just replied, “Well, that is a good question.” The actor refused to elaborate further, leading fans to wonder if there is something in the works with the notable villain. During a recent interview with Inverse, the actor was questioned about reprising his role as the character again. He replied that he will come back if everything worked out.
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As per the acclaimed Hollywood actor:
“If everything was right, sure. I mean, that’s a great role. I liked the fact that it’s a double role both times. Twenty years ago, and fairly recently, both times [were] very different experiences, but I had a good time on both.”
Marvel fans would love to see him back in the future. However, for now, Dafoe is enjoying the critical acclaim his next film, Inside is garnering. Later this year, he will also be seen in the DC film Aquaman 2 with Jason Momoa.
Inside is now in theaters while Aquaman 2 will be released on 25 December 2023. Spider-Man: No Way Home is streaming on Netflix.