The source of the rumor didn't offer much regarding specifics, but now it's looking like Zendaya may not actually be playing Mary Jane Watson.
It's said, according to their sources, a twist was to be featured at the end of the Spider-Man: Homecoming where Zendaya's character tells Peter to call her "MJ."
Obviously if it's a twist, that would mean Zendaya is not being called Mary Jane throughout Spider-Man: Homecoming as the "MJ" thing at the end of the movie wouldn't be a big deal.
On numerous occasions, Zendaya is said to be playing a character named Michelle. We can probably speculate her middle name may start with the letter "J" -- and hence the "MJ" nod at the end of the film.
Comic-Con also saw director Jon Watts specifically state Zendaya's name is Michelle as well. Is Marvel attempting to pull another Khan similar to J.J. Abrams and Paramount's attempt with Benedict Cumberbatch in Stark Trek Into Darkness (which didn't go over well at all)?
Honestly, I would be pretty surprised by Kevin Feige if he went the Zendaya as Mary Jane route. Regardless what anyone tries to spin, Mary Jane is an iconic Spider-Man character. The only issue I foresee is that Sony is involved with Amy Pascal as producer on Spider-Man: Homecoming. I believe Pascal green lit the female Ghostbusters bomb and is friends with Marvel CEO Ike Perlmutter, who Kevin Feige booted from being involved in Marvel Studios and who is thought to be responsible for the PC-replacement characters in Marvel Comics (that is also tanking).
I've gotten heat online for my views on the character replacements, but my argument has always been to just create new characters not replacing existing ones. As I've said numerous times, I wouldn't want a non-black Luke Cage, Black Panther or John Stewart -- that's just plain ridiculous.
"Spider-Man: Homecoming" has a July 7, 2017 release directed by Jon Watts starring Tom Holland, Zendaya, Michael Keaton, Donald Glover, Jacob Batalon, Laura Harrier, Tony Revolori, Tyne Daly, Bokeem Woodbine, with Marisa Tomei, and Robert Downey Jr.
A young Peter Parker/Spider-Man (Tom Holland), who made his sensational debut in Marvel Studios' "Captain: Civil War," begins to navigate his newfound identity as the web-slinging superhero in "Spider-Man: Homecoming."