We’ve recently looked at whether an actor being heavily involved in a film franchise should know every detail about the movies they’re acting in. We concluded that it seems to be split on fans expecting them to know and others not really caring as long as the actor makes their part believable.
You can apply this philosophy to Gwyneth Paltrow now after her recent admittance to not being the biggest Marvel fan. Which side Marvel fans fall on, though, is still a bit unknown. Have some of them disowned her from ever appearing in an MCU film again due to her lack of interest? Or do most don’t care one way or the other?
It’s worth taking a minute to look at what this means for Paltrow’s MCU future and whether fans think it’s healthier to not watch herself in Marvel movies.
Fans are forgiving based on her believable performances
Seldom do you see people on Reddit saying something positive about someone other than coming up with elaborate theories and criticisms. While an initial user more or less started a thread to dig into Gwyneth Paltrow for not knowing anything about or seeing Spider-Man: Homecoming, many commenters came to her defense.
One of the most substantial reasons for fans standing up is she did a professional job playing Pepper Potts. Everyone knows Paltrow is a superb actor and always gives each performance her all without necessarily doing deep-dive research into the projects she’s doing.
We all only have so much time to devote to our real interests. Clearly, Paltrow isn’t and never has been a comic book nerd. This still didn’t stop her from being a winning presence on-screen as Potts, which is more than enough for many fans.
Then you have others who think she just came in to get a check and nothing more.
What’s the real compromise here between the fan base? There may have to be a better understanding on where Paltrow’s priorities are since she is running a major business.
Paltrow didn’t read the comics, and that’s OK
When Paltrow recently appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live, he clearly stood up for her not researching Spider-Man comic books for her Marvel role. He said she shouldn’t be expected to because it just isn’t her forte. Besides, she was likely on her phone on-set most of the time dealing with business for Goop.
Sure, many people think Goop is a big joke on its own, but it’s a serious enterprise requiring a lot of time. From Paltrow’s side, she defended her lack of knowledge about Spider-Man or anything about Homecoming based on the confusion of shooting scenes out of order.
Not that any of this should bother Paltrow since she isn’t expected to return as Potts in any future Marvel movie as her own choice. Or will she after Spider-Man ended up coming back to the MCU following an initial Disney-Sony split?
Maybe she’ll be forced to do a little more Marvel research if they lure her back with an even bigger check.
What about other actors who didn’t know all the details of their franchises?
We’ve seen other actors in history who simply came into a popular movie franchise for the money and didn’t want to make it their whole life. A few examples include Sir Alec Guinness who played Obi-Wan Kenobi reluctantly in Star Wars and didn’t study religiously about the entire backstory.
When he encountered fans, he always told them to pay more attention to reality than Star Wars.
William Shatner is another who’s always had a bit of a personal distance from Star Trek and fans, outside of being the spearhead with his Captain Kirk.
Since Pepper Potts is still a sideline character, there shouldn’t be any expectation Paltrow would be a Marvel wizard.
With Reddit users mostly standing up for her, she’d likely never be booed if she ever shows up to a Marvel convention where she’d be expected to converse knowledgeably with attendees. Unless she’s secretly reading Spider-Man comics before bed of late.