News and Commentary

‘Spider-Women’ Film In The Works

Look out, here comes the Spider-Woman. She spins a web any size and catches thieves just like guys.

Indeed, Sony Pictures will be putting some girl-power into the Spider-Man franchise by giving audiences an animated “Spider-Women” film that will focus on “three generations of women with Spidey powers,” reports Deadline in a new exclusive.

Phil Lord & Christopher Miller (directors of “The Lego Movie”) will be on board in some capacity along with Amy Pascal, who previously produced “Spider-Man: Homecoming.”

“One of these characters could very well be Spider-Gwen, a breakout character from the Spider-Verse,” reports Deadline. “This all builds on the buzz preceding the animated ‘Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse.'”

Exactly what story the “Spider-Women” film will tell or which characters it will focus on remains largely unknown at this point. Nerdist provided a few possible scenarios:

Who will the three women in the potential Spider-Women movie be? Several characters from across years of Marvel stories could fit the bill. The original Spider-Woman is Jessica Drew, a mainstay of the Avengers, who is rumored to have an appearance in Spider-Man: Far From Home next year. But there is also Martha “Mattie” Franklin, Julia Carpenter, Silk, and Spider-Girl, who is Peter Parker and Mary Jane’s daughter from the future. We think they may have a hard time limiting it to just three iterations of the character.

Fans of Marvel lore have been accustomed to the character Spider-Woman, real name Jessica Drew, for over 40 years now. Created in 1977 as an intended one-off character, her brand quickly grew when Marvel saw the tremendous impact she had on sales. Her creation, however, was entirely utilitarian; Stan Lee even said he did it to protect the Spider-Man brand from being ripped off by another competitor with a “Spider-Woman” franchise. He told the Comics Journal in 1978:

I suddenly realized that some other company may quickly put out a book like that and claim they have the right to use the name, and I thought we’d better do it real fast to copyright the name. So we just batted one quickly, and that’s exactly what happened. I wanted to protect the name, because it’s the type of thing [where] someone else might say, “Hey, why don’t we put out a Spider-Woman; they can’t stop us.”

You know, years ago we brought out Wonder Man, and [DC Comics] sued us because they had Wonder Woman, and… I said okay, I’ll discontinue Wonder Man. And all of a sudden they’ve got Power Girl [after Marvel had introduced Power Man]. Oh, boy. How unfair.

In terms of the female superhero race, DC has been well ahead of Marvel for some years now, starting with “Supergirl” on the CW and Wonder Woman on the silver screen. This December, the CW will also serve as home to the new LGBTQ “Batwoman” starring Ruby Rose. “Supergirl,” however, broke barriers with the introduction of Nia Nal, the first trans superhero.

The Marvel universe has offered plenty of female superheroes, from Black Widow to Scarlet Witch, though neither has had their own film. This coming March, audiences will see the emergence of Captain Marvel, with Brie Larson in the starring role.