Fans (and bloggers) having been struggling for a while now with what to call the fledgling cinematic universe that Sony is building out of Marvel’s Spider-Man stable of characters, which it own the theatrical rights to. The studio previously used Sony Pictures Universe of Marvel Characters, but no one else picked up on it thanks to the fact that it was both long and sounded like the legalese you’d find referenced in Escape the Law. Thankfully, it’s abandoned that name and has now announced that its cinematic universe will be called Sony’s Spider-Man Universe.
Aside from being far shorter and easier to understand for anyone not aware of the complex contractual agreements between Sony and Marvel, the new title shows that Sony is definitely all in on bringing Spidey back into the fold after Spider-Man: No Way Home lands and the three-movie deal between Marvel, Sony, and Tom Holland is up. The establishment of the multiverse in No Way Home may be the bridge that will bring the web-slinger into the same universe as Venom and Morbius and the slew of other characters that Sony wants to bring to the big screen.
Of course, Sony could be bringing Spider-Man into a universe that doesn’t exist or at least can’t stand on its own. Sony already tried to launch this cinematic universe with The Amazing Spider-Man 2, and that blew up in their faces since no one actually liked it. There may be the same problem with this second attempt with Sony’s Spider-Man Universe, as the only movie we’ve seen is Venom, which stood more on campy goofiness than anything else and is a hard magic to capture in one series, let alone the multiple releases that make up a universe. While we technically should have already seen Morbius and Venom: Let There Be Carnage, neither film has actually landed thanks to COVID and we’ll have to wait until 2023 for Kraven the Hunter to even land. If Sony is planning to pull Spider-Man from Marvel, then it better be sure that those next three movies are actually something people want to see.
Here’s to hoping that Sony’s Spider-Man Universe isn’t another misfire from the studio.