Good news, Spider-Fans!
It's official: Not only is Spidey swinging his way to the Marvel Cinematic Universe - with Marvel and Sony's recent deal likely to mean we'll see him from Captain America: Civil War onwards - but he's also set to appear in a whole new set of solo movies...on top of the previously announced live-action ones.
That's right, not only will Spidey be appearing in the MCU, and in his own, Sony (and Kevin Feige)-produced, live-action solo movies - he's also set to get a brand-spanking new cinematic animated spin-off, too.
Sony Is Making an Animated Spider-Man Movie
Which, on the face of it, could well be seen as a fairly cynical exercise in trying to squeeze the Spider-Franchise for every penny that it's worth - except for one thing...
They've hired the absolute perfect creative team for the job:
Phil Lord and Chris Miller are Set to Write and Produce
...Otherwise known as the guys who wrote and directed The Lego Movie and Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs - two of the best animated action/comedies of the past few years - as well as the fantastic 21 (and 22) Jump Street.
In other words, Lord and Miller know both animated comedy and frenetic, ridiculously-entertaining action like the back of their respective hands - which can only bode well for an animated Spider-Man movie.
So, the creative team seems pretty fundamentally solid, then - which leaves me with five big questions:
1. Will It Be Set in the MCU?
Well, the early suggestions that the movie will exist independently of the live-action Spider-Man movies seems to suggest otherwise - perhaps implying that Sony wants to have at least one element of the Spider-Man over which they retain complete control - but that doesn't necessarily mean it couldn't still retain some links to the wider MCU.
After all, a brief, animated Robert Downey Jr. cameo is still a Robert Downey Jr. cameo...
2. Will the Live-Action Cast Voice Their Characters?
This one largely depends on whether or not the animated and live-action universe's prove to be a little more closely connected than those initial reports suggest - but if they are loosely tied together, then could we see the leads of the live-action movie reprise their roles as voice actors, too?
3. Which Version of Spider-Man Will It Star?
After all, if Sony does decide to completely diverge from their live-action Spider-Man adventures, it may well make sense to focus on a different incarnation of Spidey, so as to minimize confusion.
Could this then be Miles Morales (the Ultimate universe's Spider-Man)'s time to shine? And, perhaps, Donald Glover's chance to finally play the character (if only with his voice)...
4. Which Animated Series Will It Take Inspiration From?
Speaking of Donald Glover-voiced versions of Miles Morales - there's also still the question of which previous animated version of Spidey Lord, Miller, and Sony as a whole, are planning on looking to for inspiration.
Part of me is rooting for the classic '90s animated series - which would certainly fit with Lord and Miller's nostalgic leanings - but I can't help but suspect we might see something a little more in line with Ultimate Spider-Man: Web Warriors:
In which Donald Glover did indeed play Miles Morales...
My final question, though?
5. Will It Be an Origin Movie?
After all, with the live-action movie seemingly set to skip Spidey's origin, and dive straight into the action, it's entirely possible that the animated movie is being set up as a sort of Spider-Man: Year One, in which we explore Peter Parker's transformation into the hero, and his first steps as Spider-Man.
Or, perhaps...Miles Morales' version of the same journey...
What do you think, though?