UPDATED: Despite shooting a handful of scenes as Mary Jane Watson in Sony’s The Amazing Spider-Man 2, Shailene Woodley will not be appearing in the superhero sequel after all, the studio confirms. The Mary Jane character – the most famous of Peter Parker’s comic book love interests – will instead be pushed to the third film so that the rebooted franchise can focus on the relationship between Peter (Andrew Garfield) and Gwen Stacy (Emma Stone) first established in 2012’s The Amazing Spider-Man. “I made a creative decision to streamline the story and focus on Peter and Gwen and their relationship,” director Marc Webb explained in a statement. “Shailene is an incredibly talented actress and while we only shot a few scenes with Mary Jane, we all love working with her.” It’s unclear if Woodley’s already-filmed scenes will be saved for use in the third film, which has a ways to go before it hits theaters in 2016.
That timing calls more into question for the hot Woodley, whose starring run on ABC Family’s The Secret Life Of The American Teenager just ended after five seasons clearing her to focus on her burgeoning film career. A breakout thanks to 2011’s Oscar-winning The Descendants, Woodley has the award-winning Sundance hit The Spectacular Now in theaters in August and next March opens her first franchise, Summit‘s Divergent, which already has a sequel in the works. She’s also lined up novel adaptation The Fault In Our Stars for Fox 2000 and director Josh Boone. Even if Mary Jane is introduced in The Amazing Spider-Man 3 in 2016, will Woodley still be the one playing her?
The Amazing Spider-Man 2 is currently in production and set to hit theaters May 2, 2014. This week Sony dated the third and fourth installments in the series for June 10, 2016 and May 4, 2018.