Ryan Reynolds + Flamethrower = Life. All Images: Sony

For superhero film fans, few titles are more shudder-inducing than Spider-Man 3. Which is probably not the thing the marketing team at Sony was going for when creating a new trailer for killer alien film Life, but it oddly works. Let us explain.

So today a new, restricted trailer was released for Life, the upcoming scifi thriller starring Jake Gyllenhaal, Rebecca Ferguson, and Ryan Reynolds. And it’s intense. You get a great view of the weird alien, plus there’s a disgusting finger-breaking scene and lots of screaming. It’s great. Check it out.

But nothing is scarier than what Redditor toomuchsoull figured out about this footage, which is also in a new TV spot.

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At 1:26 in the above trailer, you see this reaction shot.

It’s played as a reaction shot of something falling to Earth. However, it seems that the footage wasn’t originally shot for Life. Look at this.

That above image is from Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man 3. And it’s almost exactly the same. Yes, it has a different color finish and slightly different angle. But several of the outfits and actors are undoubtedly the same.

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We contacted Sony for comment, and they told us they had none. However, this is what I guess happened. On the set of Spider-Man 3, someone shot a bunch of “Shocked People in NY” B-roll. This shot made it in. The rest of the footage was put into a stock footage folder somewhere and, when a reaction shot was needed for the Life trailer, they pulled out one that was different enough but still obviously the same. No one ever guessed someone on the internet would figure it out. But they did. And to answer the obvious question—which is “Why didn’t they just use footage from Life?”—well, when you see the movie you’ll understand. But there’s a logical explanation.

Anyway, that’s a weird aside to an otherwise edge-of-your-seat type of trailer. But nothing will ever be scarier than the sight of Spider-Man 3's Tobey Maguire confidently grooving down the street in his all-black ensemble.

Life is out March 24. We’ll have more on the film, including a review and interviews with the writers and director, soon.

Update: When originally published, we hadn’t heard back from Sony. Their reply of “No Comment” was added after.

[YouTube, Reddit via ScreenCrush]