Spider-Man: Homecoming, the latest film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, opens in theaters on July 7th. Starring as Peter Parker is Tom Holland, who already made his debut as the character in Captain America: Civil War last year but who now has the opportunity to lead a solo movie. The film is already earning rave reviews, with some critics arguing that Holland is the best Spider-Man yet.
Tom Holland is the youngest actor to play Spider-Man in a live action film; he just recently turned 21, but he was 19 when he was cast in Captain America: Civil War. In interviews, Tom Holland’s parents, especially his father Dominic, have talked about the fact that they were completely surprised to see him make such a successful Hollywood career for himself.
Here’s what you need to know about the parents of Tom Holland.
1. Tom’s Dad Is a Comedian & Writer
Tom Holland’s father is Dominic Holland, a 50-year-old comedian and writer.
Dominic Holland started performing stand-up comedy in the early 1990s, doing shows at the The Comedy Café in London. He performed at the Edinburgh Festival in 1991 and won the Perrier Best Newcomer award. Holland would return to Edinburgh several more times over the years.
Holland was briefly managed by Eddie Izzard, and he has opened for Izzard a number of times.
Outside of stand-up comedy, Holland has appeared on a number of variety shows throughout the years, and in 2000 he produced the radio show The Small World of Dominic Holland for BBC. He later created the radio series Holland’s Shorts.
Holland has also written a comedic column for The Guardian, and he has published five books: Only in America, The Ripple Effect, Open Links, A Man’s Life and Eclipsed.
2. Dominic Holland Says That His Son Has Eclipsed Him
Dominic Holland, Tom’s father, has talked a lot about the fact that he has been trying to have successful Hollywood career for decades, but his son ended up doing better than he did.
“I have been trying to make it as a star for a long time,” Dominic Holland wrote in an op-ed for The Daily Mail. “For more than 20 years, my entire income has come from making people laugh — or trying to. I am a professional comedian, a published novelist and a general wit for hire….So, looking at my son, Tom, standing next to me in the immigration queue at the airport in Los Angeles, I realised that, at the tender age of 16, he had already eclipsed his father’s own showbusiness career.”
In another op-ed for The Independent, Holland wrote, “I hope that all four of my boys will out-achieve my accomplishments – but I was not expecting this to happen quite so soon and in my own chosen profession, really.”
Holland also wrote a whole book called Eclipsed, which is the story of how his son became more successful than him. And this all happened before Holland was even cast as Spider-Man; Dominic wrote these op-eds and this book after Holland starred in the movie The Impossible.
3. Tom’s Mother is a Photographer
Tom Holland’s mother is Nikki Holland, and she is a photographer. According to her professional website, Nikki has a degree in design from Leeds University, and she has worked as a photographer for 15 years. It was at Leeds University where Nikki and Dominic met.
Nikki posts much of her photography on her website, including a number of professional pictures of her son; one blog post features pictures of Tom Holland at the Academy Awards. She also has some headshots of her son.
One of Nikki Holland’s photographs actually made its way into a Tom Holland film. In the 2013 movie How I Live Now, the audience can briefly see what is a real photo of Tom Holland with his first girlfriend; this photo was taken by Nikki Holland.
“The producers were keen to dress the film-set where the family lived with photos featuring the cast in their younger days – step forward Nikki Holland – professional photographer now – but when Tom was young, an avid amateur learning her craft,” Dominic Holland wrote on his website. “In the film is a photograph of Tom with his very first girlfriend – he was four at the time and this photograph is currently in our hallway and has always been a favourite of ours.”
Nikki Holland also did the front cover of Dominic Holland’s book Eclipsed.
4. Dominic Holland Says That His Son’s Successful Movie Career Was a Fluke
Tom Holland’s father, Dominic Holland, has said that his son becoming a major Hollywood actor took him completely by surprise. After all, not only did his son never attend drama school prior to landing his first major role, but he never even took a single drama lesson.
“It’s a total fluke what’s happened to my son Tom,” Holland said in a radio interview. “It has been a fluke because there’s been no stage school, there’s been no drama lessons…He was spotted inadvertently in a YMCA at a little local dance class, and from there went into the West End, from there went into movies, did all these movies incredibly successfully. He had no training. We didn’t know where it was coming from.”
Speaking specifically about how he feels about his son being Spider-Man, Dominic said that it honestly hasn’t sunk in yet.
He explained, “I always used to get frustrated at the end of the FA Cup final when a player would say, ‘It’s not sunk in yet.’ But I kind of understand that now, because it is almost…it’s so surreal it doesn’t feel very real to me, and I have to remind myself sometimes if I’m a little low or things are getting tough, I’ll think, ‘Tom’s doing so unbelievably well…'”
Dominic went on to say that when his son started auditioning for Spider-Man, he never thought that Tom would actually get the part.
“When the agent in America said, ‘You’ve gotta start taping for Spider-Man,’ I just never in a million years imagined that it would ever come through,” Dominic Holland said. “Even though Tom had had this gilded career already, I just thought, that kind of break happens to other families. It doesn’t happen to me.”
5. Tom Moved Out of His Parents’ House in 2017
Tom Holland just recently moved out of his parents’ house, although he did not go far.
“I’ve been looking for an apartment nearly for two years,” Holland said. “And my mom rang me up while I was shooting reshoots…she was like, ‘Tom, I found the most amazing apartment. It’s two bedrooms. It’s lovely. You’ll love it. It’s brilliant.’ I was like, ‘Mom that sounds amazing, where is it?’ You could literally throw a stone from my house to where it is. It’s like down the street from where I live.”
Holland went on to say, “I was kind of planning to move out here to L.A., but now I’m only just moving five minutes away from my mom.”
It ended up working out, though; Holland said that he loves the place and is “so happy” his mom found it. However, he did say that he was surprised at how difficult it was to move out.
“I can’t believe how much you have to think about kitting out a house,” he said. “Like it’s just an empty room. You don’t think about buying beds and stuff. I’ve always just had a bed because my parents got it for me. So now I’m like, ‘Ugh, I have to go out and get this and that and all sorts.’ So it’s a little stressful, but I’m happy doing it.”