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Warning: SPOILERS for Spider-Man: Homecoming are ahead!
Peter Parker has been Spider-Man for more than five decades in the comics and other media, but he's not the only one who holds the Web-Slinging mantle. Others have donned the mask and web shooters across the years, including Miles Morales, who was created by Brian Michael Bendis and Sara Pichelli in 2011. Miles was introduced as Peter's successor in the Ultimate universe, and along with being one of the few Ultimate characters who was brought into the main Marvel continuity after Secret Wars, he also appeared in several episodes of the Ultimate Spider-Man animated series. But what about live action? Could we see Miles in the Marvel Cinematic Universe one day? With Spider-Man: Homecoming now playing in theaters, it's now confirmed that this is definitely a possibility, and it's all thanks to Donald Glover's character in the Webbed Wonder's first MCU solo movie.
In Spider-Man: Homecoming, Donald Glover (who inspired Miles Morales' creation following his campaign to play Peter Parker in The Amazing Spider-Man) was revealed to be playing Aaron Davis, a small-time criminal who wanted to purchase a weapon from Adrian Toomes' crew. The firepower they were selling was too much for Aaron's tastes, and when Spider-Man arrived on the scene, he bailed as Herman Schultz and Jackson Brice (a.k.a. the Shockers) dealt with the superhero. Spider later tracked down Aaron for information about these high-tech thieves, and during their conversation, Aaron mentioned that he had a nephew. That nephew is Miles Morales, as in the comics, Uncle Aaron was the one who was indirectly responsible for Miles being bitten by a genetically-altered spider and gaining superpowers. Aaron also took on the Prowler identity in the Ultimate universe, but that's another story.
With that quick mention, the foundation is laid for Miles Morales to potentially appear in the MCU, even if that doesn't happen for a long time. When CinemaBlend's own Sean O'Connell brought up the subtle Miles reference in Spider-Man: Homecoming to Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige, Feige noted that these types of references are fun Easter eggs, but can also pave the way for something greater later down the road. In Feige's words:
Whenever we have something like that -- you remember Doctor Strange was mentioned in Winter Soldier -- we always love those little teases that suggest yes, people are out there in a broader universe. If and when he shows up, who knows? And certainly the current plans, I know Amy is working on now.
Although the MCU now has the option of bringing in Miles Morales, whether it's as the new Spider-Man or someone who becomes part of Peter Parker's life, it won't be in live action when the character makes his theatrical debut. Next years, Miles will star as Spider-Man in his own animated movie, which Sony Pictures is working on by itself. Following Kevin Feige's comment, Spider-Man: Homecoming producer Amy Pascal said:
Yeah, the current plan is that we're doing the Miles Morales movie at the Sony animated -- at the animation company.
No plot details for Sony's animated Spider-Man movie have been announced yet, but it will feature the voice talents of Shameik Moore as Miles, Brian Tyree Henry as Jefferson Davis (Miles' dad), Mahershala Ali as Jefferson Davis and Liev Schreiber as a yet-to-be-identified villain. This movie will be Miles' big introduction to those who haven't read his comic book adventures or caught his TV appearances, and it will almost certainly boost his popularity even further. It also wouldn't be surprising if the animated movie's performance factors into whether or not Marvel might bring in Miles for its theatrical universe.
As it stands now, Peter Parker will remain the cinematic Spider-Man for the coming years. Tom Holland is reprising Spidey in the next two Avengers movies, Spider-Man: Homecoming 2 is scheduled for July 2019, Tom Holland revealed that Marvel hopes to make a third Spider-Man movie and the actor has even expressed interest in playing the superhero for 20 years. That last one will be difficult to pull off, but it does present an opportunity for Miles.
Like Robert Downey Jr. and the other MCU actors, Tom Holland won't be part of this franchise forever, and if there comes a time when he wants to move on or the Marvel/Sony braintrust decide they've done all they can with Peter, that opens the door for Miles to put on the costume. Alternatively, perhaps Peter and Miles could be Spider-Man at the same time, like how it currently is in the comics. In any case, Miles' existence in this world has been teased, and no doubt there are many comic book fans who hope that the modern Web-Head will eventually appear in person, whether he's alongside Uncle Aaron or debuts separately.
Spider-Man: Homecoming is now playing in theaters, and whether you've already seen it or will watch it over the weekend, be sure to read our review of the movie. The animated, Miles Morales-led Spider-Man movie will be released on December 14, 2018, and if there's any news about Miles appearing in the MCU, we'll be sure to let you know.