Willem Dafoe wanted substantial role in Spider-Man: No Way Home

Willem Dafoe wanted substantial role in Spider-Man: No Way Home

Willem Dafoe only agreed to star in 'Spider-Man: No Way Home' if he had a substantial role in the movie.

The 66-year-old actor reprised his role as villain Norman Osborn/Green Goblin in the recent superhero blockbuster and explained that he wanted assurances from film bosses that his role was more than a cameo – joking that he didn't want to become a "meme".

Willem told the New York Times newspaper: "When Amy Pascal (Spider-Man producer) and Jon Watts (the director of 'No Way Home') called me and said we would like to introduce you to this idea, I thought, this is crazy. But let's see what they have to say.

"I really didn't want to do a cameo. I wanted to make sure there was something pretty substantial to do that wasn't just a tip of the hat."

The 'Grand Budapest Hotel' star continued: "And the other thing is, I said I really want there to be action – I want to be in action scenes. Because it's really fun for me. This is the only way to root the character. Otherwise, it just becomes a series of memes."

Dafoe admits that there is a "vulnerability" to playing villains on the big screen and has been fascinated with the concept of the bad guy from a young age.

He explained: "Whenever you play a role, it is you and it isn't you.

"If you're going to play one of these archvillains, it's the most natural thing in the world to cultivate the opposite of what they lead with. You develop a vulnerability and an insecurity against the confidence of the aggression.

"We all have that little devil on one shoulder and that little angel on the other shoulder. I remember as a kid seeing cartoons with that image. God knows it stayed with me."