Spider-Man: No Way Home has a plethora of villains from past movies, though this list could've been bigger. With the five central antagonists being the focus, the sequel's writers didn't completely rule more out.
The movie's screenwriters, Chris McKenna and Erik Sommers, spoke about No Way Home's planning process on the latest podcast episode of The Q&A with Jeff Goldsmith. Some of these ideas brainstormed involved expanding Venom's role.
Spider-Man: No Way Home Writers Discussed Including Venom To Make Up Sinister Six
Venom did pop up in a lengthy mid-credit scene making Eddie Brock 'technically' part of the villainy squad, as McKenna mentions. But there were discussions of involving him directly in the action itself.
If you want six, you can always say Venom was the sixth [member] if you want. He's in the tag, he made it [into the MCU], but he never made it out of Mexico (laughs). There was always that talk of, 'Should we be doing officially the Six?
Though Brock was immediately swooped back to his reality, a smidge of the symbiote was left behind which is likely to have major consequences for the Webhead's future.
While Brock did pop up, McKenna mentions there were talks of adding Rhino or Mysterio to the list:
Yes, there was [talk of Mysterio or Rhino returns]. Yeah, there was definitely talk, like, 'Who is the Sinister Six here?'
Paul Giamatti made his appearance as Aleksei Sytsevich in The Amazing Spider-Man 2. Incorporating the villain could have added some closure to 2014's Andrew Garfield-led sequel, as the movie immediately ended before the two were about to fight. However, as many remember, some fans weren't too happy with Rhino's portrayal.
Jake Gyllenhaal could very much have made a comeback as Quentin Beck. Plans to include Beck in No Way Home stemmed beyond discussions, as concept art teased a fight between Doctor Strange and the Far From Home villain.
Spider-Man: No Way Home continues to break records, after recently becoming the sixth highest-grossing movie ever. Reports also speculate that the superhero phenomenon may not be the final Webhead appearances for both Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield.