The Vulture (real name Adrian Toomes) is a supervillain from Marvel Comics. Sporting a vulture motif based on his namesake, Vulture is an opponent specializing in flight, and has established himself as one of Spider-Man's most notable adversaries. He makes his debut in the Marvel Cinematic Universe in the 2017 film, Spider-Man: Homecoming as the main antagonist, portrayed by Michael Keaton.
Vulture was created by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko.
Marvel Animated Universe
Adrian Toomes was a gothic teenager who was experimented on by Doctor Octopus at Oscorp, where he was injected with a serum derived from vulture DNA and got his memories erased, allowing him to transform into a vulture-human hybrid. He was later found by Spider-Man, who declined his offer to join the new warriors. He was then found by Taskmaster and left his team, then once again he joined Doctor Octopus, who gave him Hydra armor. However, in the series finale, both he and Rhino were cured thanks to Spider-Man.
Vulture appears as the main antagonist of the film. Initially a damage repair worker for Damage Control, Adrian Toomes was present in the aftermath of the Chitauri attack on New York. While salvaging the remains of a Leviathan ship, Toomes' was halted from further work by Stark Industries who were assigned to finish the cleanup, despite Toomes' protests that the project was funding his workers' families. Unknown to the Stark representatives, Toomes and his personal crew stashed away some Chitauri technology before the rest was confiscated.
Because of Stark's businesses running out smaller ones like his own, Toomes developed a vendetta against Tony Stark. To carry out his schemes, Toomes used the Chitauri technology to develop a special flight suit and gadgets. With his lackeys, Toomes spent the next four years stealing technology and developing his company further.
He deduced that his enemy Spider-Man is his daughter Liz's prom date Peter Parker. Although he gives Peter a warning not to intervene in his business anymore, Peter stopped Toomes from stealing a Stark cargo and defeated him. Toomes is arrested and sent to prison. Due to Spider-Man previously saving Liz's life during a trip to Washington D.C., Toomes doesn't disclose Spider-Man's secret identity to fellow inmate and Spider-Man enemy Mac Gargan.
Although Toomes isn't directly mentioned or referenced, a newspaper article reveals that his daughter Liz despises Peter Parker, after J. Jonah Jameson exposed his identity as Spider-Man to the world. Toomes along with the rest of the world had their memories wiped about Peter Parker thanks to a spell cast by Doctor Strange.
- In the comics, Adrian Toomes was the first to take on the identity of the Vulture, and there ended up being three incarnations of the Vulture.
- Michael Keaton is known for playing flying animal-based superbeings in the past, the first being Batman and next as Birdman from Birdman. His role as Vulture marks the third time he has portrayed this character type.
- Mark Hamill originally wanted to play The Vulture in Spider-Man: Homecoming only if Michael Keaton didn't want to play the part. Keaton initially turned down the offer, but later regretted just in time and got the role.
- Previous attempts had been made to adapt Vulture into a Spider-Man film. First was in an early draft for Spider-Man 3, in which he was Sandman's cellmate and the pair would have teamed up together. Toomes was removed and replaced with Venom due to demand from executives. The Vulture was originally planned to be the main antagonist in Sam Raimi's Spider-Man 4, but this never came into fruition due to the film being canceled in favor of Sony rebooting the franchise. In Marb Webb's The Amazing Spider-Man 2, a division dubbed "Special Projects" in Oscorp Industries is shown to house the gadgets and equipment of various Spider-Man villains, namely Doctor Octopus' robotic tentacles, Rhino's weaponized armor, and Vulture's mechanical winged harness, indicating Vulture would appear in The Amazing Spider-Man 3. This was confirmed, and was also confirmed he would appear in a film featuring the Sinister Six. However, due to poor reception to ASM2 and Sony's 2014 hacking crisis, the Sony Pictures Entertainment/Marvel Studios partnership deal to include Spider-Man in the Marvel Cinematic Universe was enacted instead, leading to Spider-Man: Homecoming, Spider-Man: Far From Home, and Spider-Man: No Way Home, the first of which Vulture finally made his cinematic debut.
- Keaton will reprise the role of Vulture for none MCU film Morbius, which is part of Sony's Spider-Man Universe of movies.
- "STAR WARS Star Mark Hamill Really Wanted To Play The Vulture In SPIDER-MAN: HOMECOMING". Comic Book Movie (July 19, 2017).
- "John Malkovich Confirms he was the Vulture in Sam Raimi’s SPIDER-MAN 4". Collider (April 16, 2010).