Fans and critics alike were blown away by Marvel Studios and Sony's Spider-Man: No Way Home, a movie which saw a cavalcade of special appearances from Marvel's past grace the silver screen. Among those who cropped up were previous cinematic Spider-Men, Andrew Garfield and Tobey Maguire, as well as a host of old Spider-Villains after Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige convinced fans not to expect anything of the sort.
But for superfans of Netflix and Marvel's smash hit series, Daredevil, no cast member proved more significant than Charlie Cox's Matt Murdock, who starred as the Man Without Fear for three seasons of his own solo series. He also brought the role into a team-up setting for the Defenders miniseries.
When Daredevil was canceled by Netflix, viewers were left in a lurch about the continuing adventures of Murdock. Rumors swirled about Cox appearing in an MCU film, with No Way Home being agreed upon by fans as the most likely place for a resurgence by the Devil of Hell's Kitchen.
Of course, in the lengthy run-up to No Way Home's release date, Charlie Cox was strictly prohibited from confirming his role in the feature film. Dogged interviewers seized many an opportunity to try and pry the coveted information out of the actor, but he did not budge, continually insisting that his Matt Murdock would not be showing up.
Now, over a month since the Spider-Man threequel swung into theaters, Cox is finally making the rounds and discussing his involvement.
A Weight Lifted From Charlie Cox's Shoulders
Speaking to HeyUGuys, Daredevil actor Charlie Cox noted that it was a "relief" to now be permitted to talk about his role as Matt Murdock in Spider-Man: No Way Home:
"It's a relief to be able to talk about it. Y'know, getting that phone call was a life-changing moment, really.... My involvement with that character and the MCU was dead and buried, I hadn't heard anything for a couple of years and so I'd moved on. It was incredibly unexpected and out of the blue."
Cox went on to detail a face-to-face encounter he had in late 2019 with Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige, who at the time lied through omission by not sharing Marvel Studios' Daredevil plans despite Spider-Man: No Way Home being in development at that point. In retrospect, Cox called Feige "a very good liar" who, from experience in keeping Marvel secrets intact, has a strong poker face that fooled the Daredevil actor:
"I did a play in 2019 with Tom Hiddleston and Kevin Feige came to see our play. And, Y'know, I went and shook hands with him and said hi and he said how much he enjoyed the play. Never mentioned Daredevil or anything like that. So it turns out he's a very good liar as well (laughs)."
The actor also described the process of shooting and the "intense" secrecy surrounding it all:
"I got the call midway through lockdown, Summer of 2020... and we filmed Spider-Man in March of 2021, so I had to keep it secret for almost a year.... So yeah, it's been intense."
Kevin Feige: Producer, Mastermind, Liar?
Major kudos go out to Charlie Cox for having to endure several rounds of questions regarding if he was, in fact, returning as Daredevil in the MCU only to have to lie. But the deception was worth it in the end: Matt Murdock's scene in Spider-Man: No Way Home stands out as a favorite scene for a great many fans. No mean feat when considering all of the other craziness that occurs in No Way Home.
And of course, with Kevin Feige being the architect of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, it should come as no surprise whatsoever that the man is, as Cox put it, "a very good liar." Keeping secrets is part of his job description. And as frustrating it must be sometimes to have to constantly obscure the truth, the payoff happens when moviegoing audiences scream and cheer during those big MCU moments.
As for Daredevil, he's currently heavily rumored to have a role in Marvel Studios' upcoming Disney+ show, She-Hulk. Considering that She-Hulk is an attorney, much like Murdock, it would not seem out of the ordinary for these two characters to cross paths.
Marvel Studios and Sony Picutres' Spider-Man: No Way Home is now playing in theaters around the globe.