Twitter Campaign Wants 'Community' Actor to Be First Non-White Spider-Man
by Lindsay Robertson · June 1, 2010
Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart in 'The Twilight Saga: Eclipse'
Could the movies soon have the first African American Spider-Man?
If thousands of Twitter users get their way, the star of Sony's upcoming reboot of the franchise will be Donald Glover, best known from his role on NBC's "Community." This weekend the Twitter hashtag "donald4spiderman" became the #3 trending topic in the U.S., and the campaign is still gaining steam.
The origins of this latest attempt by social media users to influence casting decisions occurred last week. After surveying the five mostly unknown white actors said to be vying for the role, Marc Bernadin, a writer for the sci-fi site io9.com, called the choices "bland" and asked, "In this day and age, why does Spidey have to be a white guy?" In response, commenters threw out Donald Glover's name as a possible contender, and a Twitter campaign was born.
A unique aspect of this latest fan campaign is its wholehearted support by the subject in question. Glover seems to like the idea (though he makes it clear on his Twitter page that he's interested in auditioning, not just being handed the role without first having to prove his worthiness). While he had nothing to do with its inception, Glover himself has been promoting the campaign, instructing fans to tweet the #donald4spiderman hash tag at strategic times to keep it trending.
In years past, an Internet petition of this kind might not be given much credence, but given the overwhelming success of the recent social-media uprising to get Betty White a hosting gig on "Saturday Night Live," this could be Glover's ticket to director Marc Webb's tryout room. He and his fans will have to act fast, though: The Hollywood Reporter is already forecasting the five most likely contenders for the role, and Glover is not on the list
Glover, a comedian and former writer for "30 Rock," has starred in only one movie so far: "Mystery Team," a comedy he co-created with his sketch comedy team, Derrick Comedy, which came out in 2009.
One hurdle Glover's fans will have is in his presumed bankability as a movie star: "Mystery Team" brought in a meager $89.4 thousand in domestic box-office sales.