Seemingly determined to make its tiny corner of the comic book movie universe as jumbled and confusing as Warner Bros.’s DC Films, Sony has announced another new Spider-Man spinoff film. The studio has tapped writers Burk Sharpless and Matt Sazama (Power Rangers) to adapt the character Morbius the Living Vampire into a feature-length solo film.
As with the adaptations of Venom (starring Tom Hardy) and Silver and Black (focused on Black Cat and Silver Sable), Morbius won’t actually be connected to the current Spider-Man, Tom Holland. In other words, these films aren’t part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, which Holland joined in last year’s Captain America: Civil War. How Sony plans on creating films centered around Spider-Man characters without actually using the web-slinger is yet to be seen, but they’ve apparently found the team they want to do it.
Sharpless and Sazama are oddly fitting choices, as they’ve worked in both the superhero and vampire worlds via Power Rangers and 2014’s dismal Dracula Untold. In fact, they’re rather known for writing big-budget, low-quality genre epics like Gods of Egypt and The Last Witch Hunter. Despite its flaws, Power Rangers was a marked improvement over their previous cinematic endeavors, so maybe Morbius will be the one they finally get completely right. According to The Hollywood Reporter, they’ve already turned in their script for the film.
Morbius first appeared in 1971 in Amazing Spider-Man #101, the first issue of the series not to be written by legendary creator Stan Lee. Attempting to cure his rare blood disease, Dr. Michael Morbius accidentally turned himself into a pseudo-vampire, gaining a vampiric appearance, blood lust, strength, speed, healing, and more. However, since his transformation was scientific and not mythological, he possess none of a vampire’s typical weaknesses, meaning he isn’t affected by crosses, sunlight, or silver. Originally a villain driven by his thirst for blood and desire to cure himself, he later became somewhat of a troubled hero.
Morbius has no current release date. Venom is due October 5th, 2018, while Silver and Black is targeting a February 8th, 2019 debut.