Jared Leto Morbius

Production has begun on Sony’s second live-action Spider-Man-adjacent film, ‘Morbius’ based on the comic book character Michael Morbius, a scientist who screws up when trying to cure his own rare blood disease and winds up as the scientific answer to a vampire.  Jared Leto stars in the title role, and the actor took to Twitter to share a photo celebrating the start of filming.  As he captioned, “1 week down…11 to go,” indicating that this shoot is expected to run until mid-May, with the final product scheduled to arrive in theaters next July.  Daniel Espinosa (‘Life’, ‘Safe House’) is directing.

The cast of ‘Morbius’ also includes  Adria Arjona, Matt Smith, and the just-announced Jared Harris.  Arjona is playing Morbius’ fiancée Martine Bancroft.  Smith and Harris’ roles are unknown at this time, but the film is also expected to include the characters Emil Nikos, Michael Morbius’ best friend and fellow scientist who assists him in his experiment; and the villain Loxias Crown, who is believed to be the Marvel character The Hunger.  Smith and Harris may be playing them, or possibly other undisclosed characters.

Last fall, Sony’s ‘Venom’ became a breakout hit, racking up $855 million in global ticket sales, despite being bombarded with nasty buzz prior to its release, and the fact that the film didn’t appear to be connected to Spider-Man in any way.  It remains to be seen if ‘Morbius’ can follow in those footsteps.

The comic book character Morbius was in 1970’s ‘The Amazing Spider-Man’ #101, and was created by writer Roy Thomas and artist Gil Kane.  Though he was depicted as a villain in earlier appearances, he would eventually appear as more of an anti-hero, even headlining his own series at times.

What do you think?  Can ‘Morbius’ be a ‘Venom’-sized hit?

‘Morbius’ is scheduled to hit theaters on July 31, 2020.