In May 2017, Holland was a relatively new actor in Hollywood – with months from the release of his first solo MCU movie in Spider-Man: Homecoming. After the release of the superhero movie, Tom Holland’s name skyrocketed. But fans remember him for more than just that.
Tom Holland‘s Lip Sync Battle against Zendaya quickly became a mega-viral video. Four years later, it is still fresh as new. The Cherry actor brought down the stage with his rendition of “Singin’ in the Rain.” Before we could take it all in, he seamlessly transitioned into an unforgettable performance of Rihanna’s hit “Umbrella.” Complete with a sensual black attire and precipitation-powered choreography, he truly set the stage on fire.
While Zendaya killed it with her lip syncs of “Tyrone” by Erykah Badu and “24K Magic” by Bruno Mars, we all know who bagged the coveted title.
Fans are now celebrating the four-year anniversary of the iconic day.
Everything about Tom Holland’s “Umbrella” rendition makes it unforgettable. But what if there was a slight change in plans?
While it may be hard to imagine Holland, 24, taking up any other number, there was a backup in place.
In a news piece by Insider, quite aptly titled – “An Oral History of Tom Holland’s Sensational Lip Sync Battle Performance,” creatives on the show revealed Britney Spears’ “Oops! … I Did It Again” was a backup option for Tom’s Lip Sync, should they not be able to secure the rights to “Umbrella.”
Additionally, remember the iconic red latex catsuit Britney wore in the 2000 space-themed music video for the song? The Spider man star would have donned that too with “a possible cameo from Spears in costume as an astronaut.”
We have to admit, it sounds equally exciting.
Sharing with Insider, costume designer Jeanie Cheek said, “We actually created two different sets of costumes for him and all of the dancers. Just in case ‘Umbrella’ didn’t go through, we had a backup performance.”
“We would clear song by song and have to go to each artist. We’d say we have Tom Holland coming on the show, and Rihanna would need to bless it. It’s never a given,” added executive producer Casey Patterson.
Clearly, it all worked out. However, Holland told PEOPLE back in 2017, he “didn’t have approval on ‘Umbrella’ until, like, five hours before we did the show,” adding, “There’s the contingency of, ‘If you don’t do this, then you’ll be doing Britney and we’ll teach you a new dance.’ “
Admitting, “it was more nerve-wracking than Spider-Man” he also said he “didn’t mind being in drag” one bit, save one regret.
“I said, ‘You want me to dance in the rain and do a front flip? I can’t do that in heels,’ ” he stated. Adding, “I wish I had now. That would have shut things down.”
Like he hadn’t done enough already.