The Reel Cinemaniac / Josh Simpkins
Man, Sony sure has done some amazing things with Spider-Man since teaming up with Marvel Studios. First, the webslinger made a guest appearance in Captain America: Civil War before going forth with a solo adventure (third time’s the charm) with Spider-Man: Homecoming. Then Sony expands the Spider-verse by tapping Tom Hardy to play Spidey’s greatest frenemy Venom. Now word on the street is that Sony is developing a movie on a Spider-Man enemy that will just drive fans batty.
That’s right friends and neighbors, Sony Pictures is developing an untitled movie based on the Spider-Man antagonist Morbius, The Living Vampire; and I couldn’t be more excited. Next to Venom, Morbius has always been my favorite Spidey anti-hero. For those who don’t know, Morbius was created in 1971 by writer Roy Thomas and artist Gil Kane for Amazing Spider-Man issue number 101, the first issue not written by Spider-Man co-creator Stan “The Man” Lee. Dr. Michael Morbius PhD, MD was a scientist and biochemist who tried to cure himself of a blood disease with tragic, unforeseen consequences. Because of his experiments, Dr. Morbius became afflicted with vampiric traits such as pale skin, razor-sharp fangs, inhuman speed, strength and durability, an unquenchable bloodthirst, and even flight—thus taking on the mantel Morbius, The Living Vampire. The character appeared sporadically in Marvel Comics in the subsequent years fighting with and against the likes of Blade and Punisher. He was then revived in the 1992 series Morbius, The Living Vampire, which had a run of 32 issues through April 1995.
Morbius is also well-known to fans of Spider-Man: The Animated Series, which ran on Fox Kids from 1994 to 1998. The show featured a great Morbius plotline that tied in with the classic Man-Spider story the program was exploring at the time. It contained a spot on Morbius origin story and even had cameos from Blade and Hannibal King. Also throughout the show, Morbius longed for plasma, never saying the term “blood.” This was presumably to stay somewhat kidfriendly, but also, the 1990s was a rather odd decade, with its Pogs, frosted tips, and rollerblades.
The project is being written by the scripting team of Burk Sharpless and Matt Sazama, whose feature credits include Power Rangers, Gods of Egypt, The Last Witch Hunter and Dracula Untold. This news gives me some confidence in the project as Dracula Untold, a film directed by Gary Shore and starring Luke Evans, was a decent, enjoyable film involving vampirism, so the duo has experience with the subject.
Sony has yet to comment as to whether the Morbius project will be connected to its Tom Holland Spider-Man movies or the Marvel Cinematic Universe. I for one hope that all the Spider-Man spinoff films are at least connected to Holland’s web head, if not the MCU as a whole. I also hope and pray that the Sinister Six film, which was to be written and directed by Drew Goddard, isn’t completely dead in the water. I will strive to keep you all fully abreast as details arise.
Joshua Simpkins, affectionately known as “Big” Josh to his friends and family, has resided in the scenic KRV for most of his life. He is an alumnus of Kern Valley High School Class of 1997 and graduated with honors from Cerro Coso Community College Lake Isabella Campus in 2009. Josh is a devoted husband, loving father, and extremely proud grandpa. Not to mention his great love of the cinema is apparent in his film critiques.