Spider-Man: Across The Spider-Verse Won’t Be Kid-Friendly?

Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse senior animator Ere Santos says the sequel is not a kids' movie.

By Michileen Martin | Updated

across the spider-verse

In spite of its 2018 predecessor proving beloved by children, one of the creators behind the production of the upcoming follow-up Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse says you shouldn’t expect “a kid’s movie.” He didn’t spill details, but the film’s senior animator recently teased some possibly dark turns for the Sony film’s heroes. Whatever it was he was referring to, it was enough to make him say the sequel is “not a kid’s movie.”

Across the Spider-Verse Senior Animator Ere Santos recently spoke to The Direct about being recruited into the film’s team and how rewarding the experience has proven. It was when he referred to some changes made to the story that he teased that the sequel wasn’t necessarily for younger viewers.

“But what kind of kept us going was we’d be frustrated, or something would change, or a sequence was cut, and then we’d see a new render… And also, some of the choices characters were making in the story were like, ‘What? … This is a kid’s movie? I guess it’s not a kid’s movie… ‘ So it’s very, very, super exciting to me.”

Ere Santos, Senior Animator on Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse

It’s far too early to speculate much about the choices Santos is referring to, though the official synopsis of Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse makes it clear Miles Morales (Shameik Moore) will be facing much bigger challenges than he did in 2018’s Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse. Rather than finding allies among the different Spider heroes from across the Multiverse, Miles will apparently be at odds with the Multiversal Spider-Force, including Spider-Man 2099 (Oscar Isaac) and his friend Gwen (Hailee Steinfeld). The stakes will be the very fate of the Multiverse, so Miles and co. may be forced to make tougher decisions than in the previous film.

across the spider-verse
Miles and Gwen in the trailer for Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse

While many may question the wisdom of Across the Spider-Verse possibly delivering darker content than Into the Spider-Verse, going in the opposite direction might have been the bigger mistake. On one hand, the first movie was heralded by fans of all ages as not only the best superhero movie of 2018, but by many it was called the best superhero movie of all time; and let’s remember this was in a year chock-full of big superhero movies like Black Panther, Avengers: Infinity War, Aquaman, Deadpool 2, and quite a few more. On the other hand, even fans who were little children when the first movie came out are now 5 years older than they were in 2018.

You could also argue it’s a little fitting that the content of Across the Spider-Verse get a bit more mature since the event the film series is based on — the 2014-15 Marvel Comics event Spider-Verse — is exceptionally brutal. The story’s villains are a family of energy vampires called the Inheritors who murder and devour countless variant Spider heroes, including characters who were established in the canon long before the event.

There’s no word whether or not Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse will be rated PG like its predecessor or get bumped up to PG-13. We should know a few months before it hits theaters on June 2.