Dakota Johnson is entering the Spider-verse. The latest addition to her long list of projects is a Spider-Man spinoff: In February 2022, reports broke that Johnson was in talks to star in the titular role of Sony’s Madame Web. Insiders told Variety at the time the deal was not yet final, but once Johnson’s role was assured, more details on the project bubbled to the surface. Now, with the release of an official trailer, here’s what we know so far.
First, who is Madame Web?
The character was first introduced in The Amazing Spider-Man comics in the ’80s and is “a clairvoyant mutant who specializes in predicting the future of Spider-themed superheroes, having mentored not only Peter Parker’s alter ego, but also multiple generations of heroes calling themselves Spider-Woman,” per The Hollywood Reporter. Also known as Cassandra Webb, she’s portrayed on the page as a blind and paralyzed elderly woman aided by a web-like life support machine.
Deadline reported in March 2022: “Insiders say due to her psychic sensory powers, [Madame Web] is essentially Sony’s version of Doctor Strange.”
In a June 2022 interview with Entertainment Tonight, Johnson was cagey on how Sony might reinterpret the character. “I can tell you pretty much nothing that isn’t already on the internet,” she said. “I’m so excited. It’s pretty cool to be in the Marvel world, especially with a character that's not so known. So, there’s a lot of space for us to make her very cool.” She later added, “It’s always been a dream of mine to do some kind of, like, massive action movie. I always wanted to do, like, a female Indiana Jones...I really have, always.” We now know from the trailer that Johnson will be playing a much younger version of the comic character, but her clairvoyance powers remain intact.
Who else is in the cast?
The Madame Web cast includes:
Johnson as Cassandra Webb/Madame Web
Sydney Sweeney (Euphoria) as Julia Carpenter/Spider-Woman
Celeste O'Connor (Ghostbusters: Afterlife) as Mattie Franklin /Spider-Woman
Isabela Merced (Father of the Bride) as Anya Corazon/Araña
Tahar Rahim (The Serpent) as Ezekiel Sims
The film is helmed by S.J. Clarkson, who has directed Marvel TV projects including The Defenders and Jessica Jones.
When will it be released?
Madame Web is set to drop on Valentine’s Day: February 14, 2024. Watch the first trailer below.
Speculation about a Madame Web film first began in 2020 when Clarkson’s directing gig went public. The film will be Sony’s first Marvel superhero movie with a female lead, as Variety pointed out. The studio’s other Marvel titles include the Venom films, starring Tom Hardy; Morbius, starring Jared Leto; the animated Spider-Verse films; and of course the three Spider-Men: Tobey Maguire in the initial Spider-Man films, Andrew Garfield in The Amazing Spider-Man films, and Tom Holland in the direct Marvel Cinematic Universe tie-in films.
This post will be updated.
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