New Sony-Marvel movie dated for 2021

Sony's Marvel Universe continues to grow with the news of an "untitled Sony/Marvel movie", scheduled for release on the 8th of October 2021. This follows hot on the heels of 2020 releases Morbius, starring Jared Leto as the eponymous living vampire, and Venom 2, starring Tom Hardy. It will also come in the wake of 2021's Spider-Man movie, which features the return of Tom Holland as the web-slinger. The news was confirmed via the Twitter feed of box office tracker ERC.

The Sony superhero universe, which started with the first Venom movie in 2018, is separate from the Disney-distributed Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) movies, which are produced by Marvel Studios. Sony, meanwhile, owns the rights to existing Marvel comic book characters including Spider-Man, Morbius and Venom. Spidey's appearance in MCU blockbusters Captain America: Civil War, Spider-Man: Homecoming, Avengers: Infinity War, Avengers: Endgame and Spider-Man: Far From Home was worked out via a complex contractual arrangement between Sony and Disney. 

This threatened to hit the rocks last year, due to a disagreement between the two studios, but fortunately a last-minute save resulted in the aforementioned 2021 Spider-Man movie being announced. As part of the new deal, Spidey will also be appearing in a "future Marvel Studios" movie; whether this is the project Sony have got dated for October 2021 remains to be seen.

So, what could the movie be? There are any number of characters from which to choose, including Silver Sable, Black Cat, Kraven the Hunter, Nightwatch, Madame Web, Jackpot, and the Sinister Six. The last example cited there is particularly exciting: the Sinister Six is a villain's collective who've played a prominent role throughout the Spider-Man comics. There was an attempt to establish the origins of the group at the end of 2014's The Amazing Spider-Man 2, starring Andrew Garfield as the title character, but poor box office put paid to the idea.

Could the seeds of a future Sinister Six movie be planted in this year's Morbius and Venom, eventually flowering in a future Sony/Marvel project? This could be a neat way of pitting Holland's superhero against the evil likes of Doctor Octopus and Electro. One of the group's cornerstone members was Mysterio, whom we've already met played by Jake Gyllenhaal in 2019's Spider-Man: Far From Home. Of course, he met his demise in that movie, albeit with a sting in the tail, exposing Spidey's identity to the wider world and implicating him in his death.

We already know that Morbius connects to Spider-Man: in the trailer for the former, Jared Leto's title character walks past a mural of Spider-Man, daubed with graffiti that reads 'murderer'. This is a clear allusion to Far From Home's climax. Whether any other connections will be forged in this or the Andy Serkis-directed Venom 2 remains to be seen.

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