Marvel and Sony have figured out how to have Spider-Man in two cinematic universes at the same time.
Spider-Man is returning to cinemas yet again, but this time, finally, in connection with the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Through the collaboration of Marvel Studios and Sony Pictures, the superhero is headlining next month’s Spider-Man: Homecoming (now portrayed by Tom Holland), and he’ll be joined on screen by the MCU’s Tony Stark/Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.).
Fans got their first taste of what the MCU looks like with Spider-Man in it with last year’s Captain America: Civil War, where he appeared opposite Iron Man, Captain America, and other Avengers. Previously, we’d only ever seen Spidey exclusively interact with his own expansive universe of characters (including Venom and Felicia Jones, aka Black Cat) in two separate standalone Spider-Man series.
The excitement of what this crossover might entail only lasted so long, though, before the disappointing announcement from Kevin Feige that two planned movies featuring characters from the comics’ Spider-Man-universe, Venom and Silver & Black (aka the Silver Sable/Black Cat movie), were to take place in their own cinematic universe outside of the MCU and not involve Spidey, Holland’s or anyone else’s version, at all.
However, in a sudden turn of events, producer Amy Pascal has revealed some unexpected information regarding Holland’s Spider-Man, the MCU, and those other Spider-verse titles. While discussing Homecoming in an interview with FilmStarts, the former Sony exec, who remains in charge of the Spider-Man franchise, explains that Sony’s Marvel Universe will coincide with the already-established MCU — to a degree.
[BREAKING NEWS] Amy Pascal confirm Black Cat and Vanom movie will pass in the same universe of "Spider-Man: Homecoming pic.twitter.com/qfAKOulqwE
— Tom Holland Updates (@tomhupdates) June 18, 2017
“Both movies will now take place in the world that we are creating for Peter Parker,” Pascal says in the video. “They’ll be adjuncts to it. They may be different locations, but it will still all be in the same world. And they will be connected to each other, as well.”
Holland’s Spider-Man can therefore make appearances in Venom and Silver & Black or their sequels or spinoffs, but we won’t be seeing or hearing about any of the other Avengers in these movies, even if they are apparently going to be existing in the same world.
We have seen characters cross over in different films within the same universe plenty of times, but nothing of this scale has ever existed before. If this tease from Pascal and Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige turns out to be a reality, this will be the first time a character exists in and conjoins two separate cinematic universes.
The Spider-Man who fights alongside Iron Man in Civil War and Homecoming will be the same Spider-Man fighting his own battles (and eventually his nemesis Villain, we presume) in these spinoffs. With the upcoming Avengers: Infinity War potentially signaling the end of the current MCU, as we’ve come to know and love it, this news provides insight into what that franchise may become afterwards.
This news also comes on the heels of recent updates on the pre-production of Venom and Silver & Black. Venom will be directed by Zombieland‘s Ruben Fleischer and will star Tom Hardy as Eddie Brock, the man who becomes the title antihero. The movie is set for a 2018 release, conveniently right around the same time as Avengers: Infinity War.
Silver & Black, a team-up of female antiheroes Silver Sable and Black Cat, is set to be directed by Gina Prince-Blythewood, who previously helmed the pilot of Marvel’s Cloak & Dagger. This is especially exciting news, in light of the groundbreaking success of DC’s female-directed Wonder Woman. Its release date has yet to be determined.
Spider-Man: Homecoming meanwhile hits theaters July 7th, marking Holland’s first solo Spider-Man movie (if we ignore the Iron Man appearances) in what is looking to be an extensive career as this hero.