Joaquim Dos Santos and Kemp Powers, directors of the upcoming Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse, have revealed more information about the role Jason Schwartzman’s Spot will play in the film.
It was recently revealed that the highly anticipated sequel to 2018’s Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse would feature the Spot, a little-known Spider-Man villain with the ability to create portals across space and dimensions. Given the first film’s ensemble of villains, it wasn’t clear exactly how big a role the Spot would have in Across the Spider-Verse, but now the film’s directors have confirmed he will be the film’s “main villain” and have talked about what makes him such a great fit for the animated sequel.
A Spot Of Trouble
Speaking to CartoonBrew.com about Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse, Joaquim Dos Santos and Kemp Powers confirmed their plan had been for the Spot to serve as the film’s primary antagonist from early on in development. They also touched on the character’s psychedelic “living ink” design and why he was a great foe for Miles Morales and one who belonged in animation.
Explaining the Spot’s place in the story, Joaquim Dos Santos spoke about the character as an opposite to Miles Morales and expanded on the nature of the character’s unique design, saying:
“Pretty early on we knew the Spot was going to be our main villain. Without an awesome villain, that you sort of can understand their through-line, you don’t really have a strong story for your main character. So he’s an awesome sort of opposite to Miles.
“And his living ink really is just, I think we’ve all been saying, it’s like an effect, it’s artistry come to life. It’s something that can only really happen in animation. If you can imagine Spot, like a dude in a sock suit, in a live-action Spider-Man film, it’s not going to work. It’s just not going to work. So he’s art come to life. He’s the inkwell spilled on the page. It all goes back to sort of comic books and comic book art.”
Kemp Powers reiterated the potential that came with the Spot’s visuals and his character arc, while also revealing that the character is not wearing a costume but has been transformed into the polka-dot figure seen in the previously released image:
“The Spot, from the very beginning, he just seemed like endless potential, both visually and the arc of the character. By the way, that’s not a costume, that’s his skin… It’s not a guy in a polka-dot suit! That’s actually his skin. So you know, the arc of Dr. Ohnn, Spot, is one that does really complement, without giving away the story, the journey of Miles in this film really well.”
Fans of 1994’s Spider-Man: The Animated Series may remember the Spot as a one-episode villain, who was only really included to help set up a broader plot. The character has never really been portrayed as a major threat to Spider-Man before, so Across the Spider-Verse appears to be treading some new ground and giving the Spot his deadly due.
Here is the synopsis for the highly-anticipated Spider-Verse sequel:
Miles Morales returns for the next chapter of the Oscar®-winning Spider-Verse saga, an epic adventure that will transport Brooklyn’s full-time, friendly neighborhood Spider-Man across the Multiverse to join forces with Gwen Stacy and a new team of Spider-People to face off with a villain more powerful than anything they have ever encountered.
Directed by Joaquim Dos Santos, Kemp Powers, and Justin K. Thompson from a screenplay written by Phil Lord, Christopher Miller, and Dave Callaham, the film features the voices of Shameik Moore, Hailee Steinfeld, Jake Johnson, Oscar Isaac, and Issa Rae.
Spider-Man: Across The Spider-Verse is currently set to be released on June 2, 2023. Stay tuned for all the latest news surrounding the film and be sure to subscribe to Heroic Hollywood’s YouTube channel for more original video content.