Sony's Morbius will be the latest film created by the studio which adapts the story of a Spider-Man villain for the big screen. Starring Jared Leto, Morbius will be Sony's second effort to make a comic book villain the center of their own story in addition to Venom. Sony clearly sees a lot of potential in taking this approach to comic book films, especially with Venom's worldwide box office total hitting more than $855 million by the time it left theaters. Given this, it seems the studio is game to keep developing other sidelined comic book characters, making for a truly unique cinematic universe.
First appearing in Amazing Spider-Man #101 in 1971 and the first Spider-Man villain not created by Stan Lee, Morbius the living vampire is an interesting character. Morbius spent most of his life with a genetic blood disease which left him too weak to do much of anything. In search of a cure, Morbius accidentally turns himself into a living vampire, or as he calls the condition, "pseudo-vampirism." Morbius's powers are unique. In addition to craving blood, he is also incredibly fast, agile, and able to heal from any wound within hours. He also has the power of night-vision, a heightened sense of smell, the ability to hypnotize others, create other pseudo-vampires, and he has the power of flight. Unlike traditional vampires, Morbius is immune to magic, garlic, Christian crosses, and other objects or symbols thought to ward off vampires.
With Morbius just a year away from hitting theaters, there's plenty of information known about the film worth refreshing oneself on in order to properly prepare. Here's what has been confirmed thus far for Morbius.
When Will Morbius Release in Theaters?
Morbius was confirmed for release on July 31, 2020. The release date occurs during peak summer movie season, indicating Sony has high hopes for its next film about a Spider-Man villain. Morbius will be entering theaters after Wonder Woman 1984, Top Gun: Maverick, Tenet, and Ghostbusters 2020 which means it will have some healthy competition for which film will dominate the box office, too.
Who Is Directing Morbius?
Daniel Espinosa is directing Morbius. This is Espinosa's first time directing a film based on a comic book character. Since earning attention for the 2010 Swedish-language crime/action film Easy Money starring Joel Kinnaman, Espinosa has gone on to direct films primarily in that vein. Past credits include Safe House starring Denzel Washington and Ryan Reynolds; Child 44 starring Tom Hardy, Gary Oldman, and Noomi Rapace; and Life starring Reynolds, Jake Gyllenhaal, and Rebecca Ferguson.
The Morbius Plot Will Likely Be An Origin Story
No plot details have officially been confirmed for Morbius. However, it's possible the film will be structured as an origin story for one of Marvel's memorable anti-heroes. At a minimum, Morbius will have to include some origin story elements even if it dives right into the character's world and doesn't spend too much time on the basics.
Morbius has never been mentioned before in an MCU, Sony, or Fox film before now so he's largely an unknown quantity to a large portion of potential audiences. As such, there will need to be some amount of origin story-like introduction to the character, how he came to be, and the key players in his story. This will be particularly necessary if plans are put in motion for a sequel since Morbius will need to establish a story baseline.
Jared Leto Leads The Morbius Cast
The Morbius cast will be led by Jared Leto, who will play the titular Dr. Michael Morbius. This is the second time Leto has played a comic book character, memorably bringing The Joker to life in 2016's The Suicide Squad. He was the first actor to be cast in the film and was in talks for the role as early as spring 2018 (he was later confirmed for the role in June). It was confirmed at the same time Leto's casting was that playing Morbius would not affect his future as The Joker in other films.
The Morbius Cast Includes Familiar Faces
Good Omens star Adria Arjona will play Martine Bancroft, another vampire and a love interest to Morbius. Doctor Who alum Matt Smith joined the cast shortly before filming began and will play the character Loxias Crown. Loxias is based on a Marvel villain but has been tweaked slightly so that he will be established as Morbius' former friend and a man who suffers from the same blood disease as him, too. Chernobyl star Jared Harris joined to play Morbius' mentor and Tyrese Gibson is set to play an FBI agent tasked with hunting Morbius down.
Spider-Man Won't Appear In Morbius
At this point, it's unclear if Morbius will make any reference to Spider-Man or other superpowered individuals, especially those in the MCU. Even though Morbius is primarily an antagonist to Marvel's Spider-Man in the comics, the two will likely never interact in a movie. The rights to the Morbius character are currently owned by Sony, which means Sony will need to give Marvel Studios permission to use the character if they want to include him in MCU canon, but since Sony produces Spider-Man's MCU movies, and he appears to have a long MCU future, Morbius could hypothetically show up there.
Morbius And Venom Exist In The Same Cinematic Universe
Venom is a Sony film which means it could exist in the same cinematic universe as Morbius. Even though there will likely be no references to Spider-Man, a common enemy of Venom and Morbius, in either of their film franchises it's possible the two anti-heroes could interact within the Sony's established comics cinematic universe. Although no mention of Morbius was made in Venom, the Venom sequel could make a reference to or feature an appearance from the vampiric figure. No confirmation has been made that the two will have knowledge of or interact with one another. Right now it's simply something made possible by the fact both characters are owned by Sony, a studio clearly interested in building out its own comic book cinematic universe.
The Morbius Trailer Isn't Out Yet
The Morbius trailer hasn't arrived yet. Filming has reportedly wrapped, so Morbius will now go into post-production. Depending on how keen Sony is to get the Morbius hype train rolling, a first-look teaser or full-length trailer could arrive by the end of 2019 or the start of 2020.
Just because there's no trailer, it doesn't mean potential audiences have been deprived of behind-the-scenes photos and video designed to build interest in the forthcoming film. Shortly after filming began in March, Leto shared a few first-look materials on social media. The first image was shared on his Twitter to celebrate the first week of filming completed. The photo showed Leto's forehead behind a Morbius clapboard. Video and photos of Leto's Morbius flying in the air also made their way to Twitter in March. Towards the end of filming, in April, Leto shared an official first-look at Morbius in all his glory to his Instagram.
Other Upcoming Marvel Movies
- Morbius (2020) release date: Jul 31, 2020