Olivia Wilde is reported to have signed a deal to direct a new Marvel film set in the Spider-Verse for Sony Pictures.
The actor and director, most known for her directional debut of the coming-of-age Booksmart, confirmed the reports on social media earlier this week.
Sony’s involvement with the Spider-Man franchise has left many speculating that Wilde will be directing a Spider-Woman film. Confirming the news on Twitter, Wilde shared Deadline’s report on the matter with a spider emoji, spurring these rumours on.
Wilde also shared the news via an Instagram story, tagging Katie Silberman, the writer of her directional debut Booksmart, writing: “Reunited and it feels so good, especially because we never left each other’s side in the first place.” What is still unclear however, is the version of Spider-Woman that will be gracing our screens.
In the many versions of Spider-Man that Sony and Marvel have given audiences in the Spider-Verse over the decades, three particular characters stand out in becoming Spider-Woman. The original form of Spider-Woman was Jessica Drew, who first appeared in comics in 1977. Spider-Woman was not originally linked to Spider-Man, with her first origin being injected with a serum by her father. This story was later developed, where her pregnant mother’s womb was hit by a laser containing DNA traits of several different species of spiders.
Jessica Drew is the character most fans will think of when talking about Spider-Woman. However, Gwen Stacy goes by the same name in an alternate universe. While Spider-Gwen is the original name of her solo comic, in the 2018 animated film Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse, she is introduced as Spider-Woman. Another character who could take on the role of the superhero is Mary Jane Watson, the most famous love interest of Spider-Man. Although she has never been linked to Spider-Woman previously, there are already theories that the character will take on the role in the new film.
Whatever form Spider-Woman appears in—whether at all, as no rumours have been confirmed as of yet—this is now the second female protagonist project being developed by Sony this year. With Wilde at the helm of the project, it promises to be a film to look forward to.
Words by Martha Lily Dean
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