After the success of 2018's Into the Spider-Verse, the film's sequel had a tall task to live up to its predecessor.
However, according to reviews and word-of-mouth from both fans and critics alike, Sony Pictures knocked it out of the park and delivered one of the most well-received superhero films of all time.
It was always teased that Across the Spider-Verse would take everything from the 2018 film and make it bigger and better, and some rumors even suggested that some MCU references would make their way into the final cut.
Kevin Feige's Involvement in Across the Spider-Verse
In an interview with Rolling Stone, Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse writers and producers Phil Lord and Chris Miller were asked about Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige's involvement in the creative process of the film.
Miller spoke up first regarding the question and revealed that Feige actually had nothing to do with that specific reference or anything else in the film. According to Miller, they "let the lawyers" handle the legalities of everything while they focus on the creative process:
"None. We did it. It’s been our policy to do what we think is interesting and best and let the lawyers and business affairs people figure out what’s possible, and so far we’ve been able to do the things that we think are good."
Lord then described their collaboration with Feige's Marvel Studios as "very fruitful." He also added that he believes the exec is "a big admirer of" 2018's Into the Spider-Verse, and that he wants to see the future films in the trilogy be successful:
"Marvel has given us a lot of rope. It’s been a very fruitful collaboration. But it’s not like there’s some shadowy board of figures that you have to run things by. I think Kevin’s a big admirer of the first movie and just believes like a rising tide lifts all boats. Like, 'These movies are cool, and it makes those movies cool. And we make each other cool.'"
Miller then chimed back in and stated that everything is "all done out of love," which has made for "a very pleasant collaboration" between the two studios:
"And it’s all done out of love. If it were somehow mean-spirited or coming from a place of anything other than admiration and enjoyment, I think it might be a thing. But as it is, it’s just been a very pleasant collaboration."
In a past interview, Feige did, in fact, reveal that he enjoyed watching Into the Spider-Verse when it initially came out, saying, "I loved Spider-Verse and I thought it was great."
In that interview, Feige was asked if Spider-Verse's success caused him to worry about Spider-Man: Far From Home releasing after it. He said that it didn't, but praised the animated film at the same time:
"I saw 'Spider-Verse' and said thank god we went with something daring and complex. If it had just been an average Spider-Man villain chasing him around buildings and trying to hit him with a blast, it would have seemed really lame next to 'Spider-Verse.'"
Will Beyond the Spider-Verse Continue the Trend?
Marvel Studios obviously has the rights to the character of Doctor Strange, but through good graces and a "fruitful collaboration" between it and Sony, the character was able to be mentioned by Miguel O'Hara, aka Spider-Man 2099.
Doctor Strange wasn't the only reference to the MCU throughout Across the Spider-Verse.
However, as fans now begin to anticipate the release of Beyond the Spider-Verse threequel, many have to wonder if it will contain even more nods to Marvel Studios' interconnected universe.
Just as Lord and Miller stated, as long as the strong relationship between Sony Pictures and Marvel Studios remains intact, it is hard to believe that there won't be at least something.
After all, the Spider-Verse movies are tapping into the Multiverse like no other film ever has, and it wouldn't be a stretch to say the final movie of the trilogy will go even bigger than its two predecessors.
Obviously, it is impossible to predict what the references could be in Beyond the Spider-Verse, but fans can expect to at least hear, or maybe even see a few.