- “I don't expect forgiveness from you anymore. I don't believe in miracles. How could you possibly understand that your childhood had to be sacrificed for something greater? And not just for me. For you! Has your hand started to twitch yet? Can you feel it at night? Crawling under your skin? Waiting to show you who you really are? Retroviral Hypodysplasia. I never told you that it's genetic. Our disease. The Osborn Curse. ”
- ―Norman Osborn[src]
- “I started Oscorp because I looked at the world around me and I thought, "We can do better. And we should do better." Einstein said the world cannot be changed without changing our thinking, but change isn't just a slogan. It begins with hard work. Change begins with persistence and commitment.”
- ―Norman Osborn[src]
Little is known of Norman Osborn, other than that he had a debilitating disease called 'Retroviral Hypodysplasia' which killed him. Dr. Curt Connors' and Dr. Rajit Ratha's experiments with lizard DNA were an attempt to cure him, until Connors used the serum on himself, transforming into the monstrous Lizard. After the Lizard was destroyed (for the first time), Connors and Ratha quit their works, and Connors was thrown into a mental institute. Currently, there are no known cures for the Osborn illness, and it is unknown if anyone is even attempting to find a cure.
Norman's son, Harry, returns after years away in boarding school and visits him in the hospital, whereby this point Norman is in very poor health. Norman explains to Harry that his illness is genetic and that he is at the right age where it begins to show. Before he dies, Norman gives Harry a device saying it is his life's work. The next day, it is reported that Norman had passed away.
Deleted Post-Credits Scene
There was a post-credits scene in The Amazing Spider-Man 2 but it was deleted from the final cut. The scene shows Gustav Fiers walking through the Special Projects and going to Door 3. There, you can see Norman Osborn's frozen head. Gustav says "Wake up my friend" Norman opens his eyes. Also, when Norman passes away, you see the nurses rushing in to cover up his body. One of the nurses is pushing a rack with a jar on it. That could be the jar where Norman's Osborn's frozen head was placed.
- For unknown reasons, Chris Cooper wasn't credited for his appearance as Norman in The Amazing Spider-Man 2.
- Osborn, in other Spider-Man media, takes on the identity of the Green Goblin, a famous Spider-Man villain. However, in this universe, it's his son Harry who first takes on the identity of the Green Goblin.
- It is rumored that plans for the third film would have had Norman come back from the dead and become the beastly Goblin from the Ultimate Marvel comics.
- Chris Cooper had stated that Norman's appearance in The Amazing Spider-Man 2 would be the introduction to the character, and a return in The Amazing Spider-Man 3 will be on the cards.
- It was planned that Osborn would have also appeared in a spin-off film featuring Kraven the Hunter, serving as a interquel between the first and second movies, and clarifying his sickness and knowledge of Peter Parker. Sergei Kravinov would have been one of his several shady associates (alongside Rajit Ratha, Donald Menken, and Gustav Fiers), and having observed Spider-Man, realized he was a product of the Cross-Species Genetics research. Believing that Spider-Man's blood held the cure to Retroviral Hypodysplasia, Osborn tasked Kraven with hunting down and capturing Spider-Man to obtain blood samples and grant Kraven an ideal challenge. Kraven successfully defeats Spider-Man and procures a blood sample. Osborn devises a serum from it (similar to the spider venom samples from Special Projects) and upon administering it (as Harry would years later) mutates further into a monstrous goblin-esque creature (retroactively revealing he was the first Green Goblin, and was dubbed Goblin King in pre-production) who Spider-Man escapes captivity to engage. A brawl ensues that would end with Goblin defeated and weakened further due to the serum's affects backfiring and accelerating the disease. Kraven would rescue him and return him home, leading to his dying condition by the beginning of The Amazing Spider-Man 2. It would have also delved further into Osborn's machinations with the Special Projects division and set up The Sinister Six.