The concept of the Multiverse is becoming more and more prominent in comic book movies and series. And now, Spider-Man: No Way Home is now bringing the MCU's live-action Spider-Man into the fray of Multiverse-centric projects, as trailers have confirmed the inclusion of villains from various universes in the movie. However, will Venom and Morbius be included in that lineup?
This is a tall order for Marvel Studios and Sony, but given that the latter already has three Spider-Man-centric franchises going (the one set in the MCU, the Spider-Verse one, and the Sony Marvel Universe with movies like Venom and the upcoming Morbius), they do have some experience juggling multiple continuities, as Sony producer Amy Pascal discussed in a recent interview.
The Real-Life Spider-Man Multiverse
While discussing Spider-Man: No Way Home with Fandango, Sony producer Amy Pascal was asked about the challenges of how she and the rest of the Spider-Man team at Sony manage all the different continuities featuring some iteration of the webslinger.
Pascal explained the way they all operate, citing how each is like a "container:"
"Well, there's the Marvel Universe, which is one container and then there's the Spider-Verse movies, which are different and then there's the other universe where the Sony characters are in. We all are very respectful of each other and work together and make sure that we're only being additive."
Pascal was also asked about her own predictions as to how important Multiverse-based storytelling would be in comic book adaptations in the years to come. She said the use of the Multiverse "[makes] for so many interesting stories, but I don't think that every single movie is going to end up taking place in the multiverse:"
"I think you're going to see a lot of people exploring those worlds because it's interesting. The parallel universes make for so many interesting stories, but I don't think that every single movie is going to end up taking place in the multiverse. I think it's really exciting, and this movie certainly does."
Will the Multiverse Wear Out its Welcome?
Pascal's comments raise a good point about the Multiverse concept's ability to remain fresh (or not) for a long time to come. She (and presumably the rest of Sony's Spider-Man team) seems to understand the importance of ensuring continuity within each universe, and that if they are going to cross over, the new project must be respectful of and honor what has come before, just like any other movie would.
It will surely be a relief to some fans, especially more casual ones, that the Multiverse is unlikely to come into play in every single movie. While crossovers can make for a fun treat, utilizing the concept too much can make franchises inaccessible to new fans and potentially confuse even some longtime audience members.
As with ensuring continuity, it is important to ensure complex concepts like the Multiverse are used somewhat sparingly in order to maintain their freshness and that each project utilizing it explains what audience members need to know so everyone watching is able to follow the story.
Multiverse-Less New Spider-Man Trilogy?
While Spider-Man: No Way Home will clearly be employing the use of the Multiverse, it is unclear whether any of the films in the recently announced upcoming second trilogy featuring Tom Holland as Peter Parker set in the MCU will.
The most likely scenario in which it might would probably be a crossover between Tom Hardy's Venom and Holland's Spider-Man, seeing as the Venom: Let There Be Carnage's post-credits scene showed the two existing within the same universe. However, this may end up being a case of Venom always existing in the MCU but with no connection to the rest of it until his meet-up with Spider-Man, meaning it technically wouldn't be a Multiverse movie.
Spider-Man: No Way Home opens in cinemas on December 17, 2021.