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Are Spider-Man 4 and Across the Spider-Verse connected?

Published Jun 8th, 2023 2:10PM EDT
All the Spider-People joining forces to abuse an iconic Spider-Man meme.
Image: Sony

Going into Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse, I hoped the movie would connect to the larger MCU multiverse. That the characters from Into, Across, and Beyond the Spider-Verse will be available to Marvel in Spider-Man 4 and Avengers movies down the road. All the initial confusion went away as soon as I saw the sequel. I had a way for Spider-Verse 2 to connect to Spider-Man 4 and any other SSU and MCU.

It’s not wishful thinking, either. An insider revealed that Sony consulted with key Marvel writers for Spider-Verse 2. That information should address anyone’s concerns about Spider-Verse 2’s place in the grand scheme. But the same insider also delivered a few exciting updates about the Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse‘s potential ties to Spider-Man 4.

Before I proceed, you should know that big Across the Spider-Verse spoilers will follow.

Why I want the Spider-Verse to be part of the MCU multiverse

Into and Across the Spider-Verse are quite possibly the best Spider-Man movies that Sony ever made. It’s all thanks to Spider-Verse 2, really. And I include the MCU Spider-Man movies in the list.

It’s perfectly fine for the Spider-Verse trilogy to exist outside the MCU and Sony’s Spider-Man Universe (SSU). But leaving the Spider-Verse characters behind would be such a waste. That’s why I want to see more of them after Beyond premieres next March. If it can make that release date amid the writers’ strike, that is.

Gwen Stacy Bishop (Hailee Steinfeld) and Miles Morales (Shameik Moore) in Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse trailer.
Gwen Stacy Bishop (Hailee Steinfeld) and Miles Morales (Shameik Moore) in Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse trailer. Image source: Sony

Miles Morales (Shameik Moore) and Spider-Gwen (Hailee Steinfeld) are two such characters, although plenty of Spider-Verse 2 Spider-People would deserve a place in future SSU/MCU adventures. Even a nod in Spider-Man 4 would be great.

The latter can’t be a multiverse movie. Sony and Marvel just pulled that trick with No Way Home. We can’t have another meeting of Spider-People so soon. But it doesn’t have to be a multiverse film for a connection to exist.

Across the Spider-Verse is MCU multiverse canon

Alex Perez said in a Cosmic Circle podcast that Sony talked to Jeff Loveness and Michael Waldron while making Spider-Verse 2. That’s because the Spide-Verse is part of the larger MCU multiverse, even if it doesn’t make sense.

The events in Across the Spider-Verse are MCU canon and might be referenced in live-action movies.

Tom Holland’s Spider-Man did not cameo in Spider-Verse 2, as rumors said, but Perez said they planned to have him in the sequel. Wearing the costume below, not the one Peter makes at the end of Spider-Man 3.

Holland’s Spidey is just one of the variants they had to cut. But these extra Spider-People might appear in Beyond the Spider-Verse next year. And we might have Miles Morales & Co. visit live-action universes from other Spider-Man movies. It’s unclear what those live-action realities will be, however.

A scene from Spider-Man: No Way Home trailer
Doctor Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) and Spider-Man (Tom Holland) in the first Spider-Man: No Way Home trailer. Image source: Sony

Across the Spider-Verse’s big Easter egg is exactly what you think

With all that in mind, there is one big link between Spider-Verse 2 and Spider-Man 4. The live-action Prowler (Donald Glover) that Hobie (Daniel Kaluuya) captured somewhere in the Spider-Verse isn’t a variant of the character we saw in Homecoming. It’s the same character from Earth-616, who might appear in Spider-Man 4.

Perez referred to an older rumor that Sony was testing Glover’s Prowler costume. He assumed at the time it was production work for Spider-Man 4, which should be a street-level adventure. It turns out that Sony wanted to use the live-action Prowler variant for Spider-Verse 2.

Will we see the Prowler in the next Spidey movie? Nothing is guaranteed at this time. We know the Spider Society is working on grabbing Spider-Man-related villains from realities they don’t belong and sending them back home. That’s what they intend to do with this Prowler version. But that’s not enough to say Spider-Man 4 will have a live-action Prowler in it.

Let’s also remember the recent rumor that said Spider-Man 4 will deliver a live-action version of Miles Morales.

Chris Smith Senior Writer

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he brings his entertainment expertise to Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises.

Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.