Welcome to the big screen Jared Leto’s Morbius, the latest Spider-Man villain (or more accurately in this context anti-hero) that will receive his very own standalone movie.
Because of some complicated details surrounding character rights between Sony and Marvel, Morbius joins Venom and other planned Spider-Man spinoffs that are more adjacent to Tom Holland’s Spider-Man in the MCU, but as No Way Home showed us, that doesn’t mean characters can’t cross over now and again.
So, with all that in mind, here is everything that we know about Morbius.
‘Morbius’ release date
The journey for for Morbius to get to the big screen continues. Initially, Sony was planning to release Morbius in July 2020. Of course, the pandemic caused many movies to delay their planned releases. For Morbius, it was originally moved to March 19, 2021, before being pushed again to Oct. 8, 2021. However, Sony eventually put Venom: Let There Be Carnage in that October date, and pushed Morbius to January 2022, ultimately to Jan. 28.
However, the movie's release has been pushed once again amid the omicron variant surge. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Sony has pushed Morbius from Jan. 28 to April 1.
Time will tell if this is the beginning of another wave of movie delays to the 2022 movie schedule or a one-off for Sony to ensure they get the biggest bang for their buck out of their superhero film, especially following the massive box-office of Spider-Man: No Way Home.
Who is Michael Morbius
Michael Morbius is a classic example of a Marvel character who started out as a tragic villain only to eventually become more of an anti-hero.
Michael Morbius begins as a brilliant scientist, but he suffers from a rare blood disease. In an attempt to find a cure, vampire bat DNA is mixed into his blood, transforming him into a pseudo-vampire with a lust for blood. Originally, Morbius was a villain for both Spider-Man and Blade, but he eventually became a vigilante who strives to satisfy his need to consume blood by stalking bad guys.
From all of the early footage of the upcoming Morbius movie, it certainly looks like the character is staying pretty close to that origin, though will likely more immediately be targeting bad guys as his primary prey.
Morbius is a good old-fashioned origin story for the character, though we do know that there will be some larger allusions to the superhero universe Sony is building with other Spider-Man villains/anti-heroes, most notably Venom.
Here is the official plot for Morbius:
“Dangerously ill with a rare blood disorder and determined to save others suffering his same fate, Dr. Morbius attempts a desperate gamble. While at first it seems to be a radical success, a darkness inside him is unleashed. Will good override evil – or will Morbius succumb to his mysterious new urges?”
Jared Leto as Michael Morbius
Oscar-winner Jared Leto stars as Dr. Michael Morbius in the movie, another dip into the superhero pool for the actor.
Leto portrayed The Joker in 2016’s Suicide Squad and then got to reprise the role in an epilogue scene in Zack Snyder’s The Justice League that was released on HBO Max in 2021. Leto made his Joker an unhinged character and infamously continued his character’s antics even when the camera’s weren’t rolling.
The character of Morbius isn’t a straight villain or as wild as Joker, but he is still a character with a unique background that will allow Leto to make some interesting choices. His affinity for such characters extends beyond the superhero genre, as he gave a very large performance in House of Gucci.
Leto is the lead of the movie, but he’s got a solid supporting cast behind him, including a major actor already familiar with the Spider-Man universe.
Among the Morbius cast are Adria Arjona (Pacific Rim: Uprising, True Detective), Jared Harris (Foundation, Chernobyl), Matt Smith (Last Night in Soho, Doctor Who), Tyrese Gibson (Fast & Furious) and Al Madrigal (The Way Back, The Daily Show).
As for the actor with the Spider-Man connection, Michael Keaton is appearing in the movie in an expected reprisal of his role as Adrian Toomes, aka The Vulture, who was the primary villain in Spider-Man: Homecoming. With the divisions between Sony and Marvel universes, we’ll have to see if this is the same or a different version of Toomes, but Keaton’s appearance in Morbius is part of Sony’s continued push to create a connection between all these movies.
Daniel Espinosa served as the director of Morbius. The Swedish filmmaker got his start in Hollywood by directing the 2012 Denzel Washington, Ryan Reynolds thriller Safe House, followed up by the Tom Hardy-led Child 44 and the sci-fi movie Life, which starred Reynolds, Jake Gyllenhaal and Rebecca Ferguson.
There have been a few Morbius trailers as the movie had to start and stop its promotions because of its shifting release schedule. However, you can watch the most recent trailer for Morbius directly below.
Michael Balderston is a D.C.-based entertainment writer and content producer for What to Watch. He previously has written for TV Technology and Awards Circuit.
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