Sony’s Post-‘Venom’ Spider-Man Spinoffs Include ‘Silk’ and ‘Black Cat’ Solo Films, More Diversity
In last week’s report about the Kraven the Hunter film, it was made clear that Sony’s plans for upcoming Spider-Man universe projects heavily hinge on the success of Venom. With early box office tracking suggesting that the spinoff, starring Tom Hardy as the eponymous anti-hero, will perform well enough, Sony is looking ahead to the various ways it can continue to expand their comic book franchise. According to a new report, the studio is hoping to make even more standalone films, with an emphasis on diversity — an area which other superhero franchises have only recently begun to explore.
Variety has an extensive new report on Sony’s tentative plans for the Spider-Man universe. As with this October’s Venom, the studio is looking to develop more standalone films featuring heroes, villains and anti-heroes from the iconic web-crawler’s stable of characters. The bad news: Silver & Black, a heist film that would have followed the pairing of Black Cat and Silver Sable, has been nixed entirely. However, Sony is now planning on making separate films about Black Cat, aka Felicia Hardy, and Silver Sable, aka Silver Sablinova.
Gina Prince-Blythewood, who was attached to write and direct Silver & Black, may or may not stick around to helm Black Cat and / or Silver Sable, though she will remain on board as a producer of both films as Sony hopes to continue telling diverse stories in and around the Spider-Man universe. That includes this December’s Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse. The animated film, from Phil Lord and Chris Miller, features fan favorite Miles Morales as the titular hero and is entirely separate from the live-action Spidey films.
As previously reported, Sony is also developing a solo film about Silk, aka Cindy Moon — a Korean-American teenager who was bitten by a radioactive spider and granted exceptional abilities, like her classmate Peter Parker. But Cindy has better agility and more strength than Peter. Among the studio’s newer plans are films about Nightwatch and Jackpot, the latter of which is a female superhero identity shared by two women — one of whom happens to be in her mid-40s. In a world where most female action heroes and superheroes are in their 20s and 30s, and there are few interesting roles for older women, a middle-aged female superhero could be really amazing.
Taking a cue from the recent success of Wonder Woman and the demand for more diverse talent behind the scenes, Sony is looking for female filmmakers to write and direct their various female-centric Spider-Man projects.
Nightwatch, however, is about a male superhero, and might fit in with Sony’s openness to the idea of making edgier, adult-friendly comic book movies with smaller budgets (like Logan and Deadpool). That character, also known as Dr. Kevin Trench, has a fairly dark origin story in which he witnesses the death of a masked vigilante who turns out to be the future version of himself.
All of these projects are, of course, in the very early stages, and many of them are still in need of writers. Just last week, Sony tapped The Equalizer 2’s Richard Wenk to script the Kraven the Hunter movie, which joins a growing list of standalone films in various stages of (early) development — like Morbius. Starring Jared Leto as the titular “living vampire,” that film (which sounds like a biopic, tbh) is set to be directed by Daniel Espinosa, who previously helmed the 2017 sci-fi flick Life, also for Sony.