Martin Sheen is in final negotiations play Uncle Ben in Columbia's "Spider-Man" reboot, the studio has confirmed to TheWrap.
Additionally, an individual familiar with the project has told TheWrap that Mary Jane Watson will not appear in the film after all, as the character is not currently featured in James Vanderbilt's screenplay, and apparently never was.
Back in September, Deal Central reported that Mary Jane would appear in the new "Spider-Man," as the script featured two love interests competing for the affections Peter Parker. However, that wasn't quite true.
Evidently, there had been some discussions about Emma Stone playing red-haired MJ, but once she was cast as Gwen Stacy, the filmmakers decided to trust their instincts and stick with one love interest.
Frankly, Stone's Gwen Stacy should provide more than enough romance for Andrew Garfield, who takes over the role of the teenage web-slinger from Tobey Maguire.
Marc Webb ("500 Days of Summer") is directing the comic book adaptation, which co-stars Rhys Ifans as The Lizard.
In the Marvel comic, Uncle Ben raises Peter Parker with his wife, Aunt May. His death at the hands of a burglar inspires his nephew to become a hero using his newly-acquired super-powers.
Cliff Robertson originated the role in Sam Raimi's original "Spider-Man, but I think Sheen will do a great job filling Uncle Ben's shoes.
Production is on track to begin in December.
Sheen was last seen on the big screen in "Imagine That" and "Love Happens." He will soon be seen in "The Way," a film selling at AFM this week that co-stars his son, writer-director Emilio Estevez. The Golden Globe-winning "West Wing" actor recently wrapped a role as the head of the CIA in Michael Brandt's spy thriller "The Double."
Sheen is represented by ICM, and his casting was first reported by the Hollywood Reporter.