Director Jon Watts reveals details of Michael Keaton's Spider-Man: Homecoming Vulture villain

Spider-Man: Homecoming director Jon Watts has given fans an idea of how his movie's big villain ends up with an axe to grind—and how he acquires his powers.

Speaking with USA Today, Watts—and Michael Keaton, who plays bad guy Adrian Toomes, a.k.a. the Vulture—offered a little behind-the-scenes insight into how Homecoming's central conflict develops. As it turns out, Watts has taken full advantage of the fact that Sony is now partnering with Marvel over stewardship of the Spider-Man franchise, opening up storyline crossover potential that feeds directly into the Vulture's new origin.

"My whole approach for this movie is that we've seen the penthouse level of the (Marvel) universe," explained Watts. "We've seen what it's like to be a billionaire inventor and to be a Norse god. We've seen the very top of this world. But we've never seen what it's like to be just a regular joe."

Toomes' "regular joe" life includes running a salvage company responsible for picking up after the growing pile of messes left behind by the MCU's superhero battles in New York—and when his livelihood is threatened by a new government agency founded by Tony Stark, a.k.a. Iron Man (Robert Downey, Jr.), he decides to repurpose some of the abandoned or broken technology left behind after those fights, with the aid of the Shocker (Bokeem Woodbine) and the Tinkerer (Michael Chernus).

"I like the idea that in these huge movies, you pick out one extra and you're like, 'What does he think of all this?'" added Watts. "Sometimes these movies are so casual about just destroying whole cities and incredible things happen and everyone's like, 'Eh, whatever.' If that really happened, it would be amazing and change everything."

Spider-Man: Homecoming is due to arrive in theaters July 7. While you wait, check out our exclusive set photos and breakdown of the film's first trailer.