After playing a superhero speedster in the MCU, Aaron Taylor-Johnson has now signed on with Sony to play the infamous Spider-Man super-villain, Kraven the Hunter.
One of several Spider-Man spin-offs currently in the works, Kraven the Hunter joins the fledgling cinematic universe known as the “Sony Pictures Universe of Marvel Characters” alongside other upcoming major projects Venom 2 and Morbius. Following the commercial success of 2018’s Venom, Sony now seems to be betting all their chips on more films focusing on Spider-Man adjacent characters that don’t necessarily feature the webbed wunderkind.
Dubbed the greatest big-game hunter in the world, Sergei Kravinoff grants himself superhuman abilities by ingesting potions made from rare jungle herbs. These enable him to see, hear, and smell objects from great distances with impeccable clarity, and allows him to achieve herculean strength and Olympic-level athleticism.
Kraven the Hunter is also a founding member of the Sinister Six, the super-villain group consisting of Spider-Man’s long-standing foes.
Kraven the Hunter was heavily rumored to be the main antagonist in the MCU’s Spider-Man: No Way Home after clues point towards the Sinister Six making its presence felt in the film. Though MCU deflated those rumors, this led to Sony spending much time developing a solo film around the Hunter, even eyeing Keanu Reeves, Adam Driver, and even Brad Pitt for the role, before eventually landing on Taylor-Johnson.
It was a fair choice too, considering he has the experience playing Wanda’s brother, Pietro Maximoff, also known as Quicksilver, in 2015’s Avengers: Age of Ultron.
In addition, Richard Wenk, current writer for the film, said that it will be an adaptation of the famous storyline in the comics, “Kraven’s Last Hunt,” and might feature the web-slinger, yet again teasing the possibility of the two universes crossing over.
The film is directed by J.C. Chandor and is currently set to release on January 13, 2023.