After spinning off Spider-Man villains like Venom, Morbius, and Kraven the Hunter into Spidey-less solo movies in its own Marvel universe, Sony Pictures isn't rushing to team up its Spider-Man supervillains in Sinister Six. Before it launched its shared Sony Pictures Universe of Marvel Characters — home to Venom (Tom Hardy), Morbius the Living Vampire (Jared Leto), and soon Kraven (the newly-cast Aaron Taylor-Johnson) — Sony planned a Sinister Six standalone spinning out of 2014's The Amazing Spider-Man 2. But when a deal was reached with Disney and Marvel Studios to reboot Spider-Man and bring him into the Marvel Cinematic Universe in 2016's Captain America: Civil War, it meant pumping the breaks on the many spin-offs intended to springboard out of Amazing Spider-Man 2.
As Sony prepares to release Venom: Let There Be Carnage in September and Morbius in January, the Spider-Man studio has set director J.C. Chandor's Kraven the Hunter for 2023. Because the character is a founding member of the team in the Marvel comic books, does Kraven mean Sony is setting up its Sinister Six?
"It's tough, because I think these projects are the kind of things we have to work on in the dark," Sanford Panitch, President of Sony Pictures Motion Picture Group, told Variety. "They're not ready until they're ready. Kraven is a great example because we just didn't rush it. We could have made that three-plus years ago. It's just now the script's awesome, J.C. was the right choice, and we found the movie star because it was just kismet, and watching this other movie [Bullet Train] and realizing that [Taylor-Johnson] could be the perfect casting."
Asked again about Sinister Six, Panitch said with a chuckle: "It would be very cool, wouldn't it?"
Panitch's comments come on the heels of a report that a version of the Sinister Six will appear in Spider-Man: No Way Home, where an unmasked Peter Parker (Tom Holland) will reportedly take on a half-dozen villains from across the Marvel Multiverse. It's the villains who will have "no way home," according to that report, including Spider-Man's Green Goblin (Willem Dafoe), Spider-Man 2's Doctor Octopus (Alfred Molina), and The Amazing Spider-Man 2's Electro (Jamie Foxx).
Sony tapped Drew Goddard (The Cabin in the Woods, Bad Times at the El Royale) to write and direct Sinister Six when that version of the film, dated for 2016, was one of several spin-offs using The Amazing Spider-Man 2 as a launching point. That film's end credits hinted at a roster that might have included Electro, Doc Ock, the Harry Osborn Green Goblin (Dane DeHaan), Mysterio, Rhino, and the Vulture.
Goddard later revealed he envisioned Sinister Six as a "summer annual," describing his supervillain ensemble as one that "didn't have to worry about continuity."
"It was just, 'We take Peter, put him on an adventure, we put him back in his life.' I intentionally wanted a movie that didn't have to worry about mythology and continuity," Goddard told io9 in 2017. "It was important to me to make a movie that could stand on its own. So the good news is, you know, [laughs], it slots in very well to any plan anybody ever wants. We just need to let a couple years go by, I think."0comments
By late 2018, Spider-Man producer Amy Pascal told Vanity Fair she was "waiting for Drew to be ready" to direct Sinister Six and that she would "do anything with Drew Goddard. I'm just waiting for him to tell me he wants to."
Upcoming Sony releases include Venom: Let There Be Carnage (September 24), Sony and Marvel's Spider-Man: No Way Home (December 17), Morbius (January 28, 2022), and Kraven the Hunter (January 13, 2023).