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Aaron Taylor-Johnson’s Casting Strains The Spider-Man Villain/Marvel Universes

Kraven the Hunter Tom Holland as Spider Man and Aaron Taylor Johnson as Quicksilver

The casting choice for Kraven the Hunter isn’t a good sign for those hoping Sony’s Spider-Man villain universe will be integrated into the MCU.

Aaron Taylor-Johnson being cast in the lead role in Kraven the Hunter could complicate any plan to integrate Sony’s Spider-Man villain universe into the MCU. It was announced that the Avengers: Age of Ultron actor will be playing the iconic Spider-Man foe in the upcoming movie. Directed by J.C. Chandor and set for an early 2023 release, Kraven the Hunter will be the fourth installment in the Sony Pictures Universe of Marvel Characters.

Taylor-Johnson’s Kraven will be the third villain in Spider-Man’s rogues’ gallery to get their own movie. Long before it became clear that the multiverse would be at the center of the MCU’s Spider-Man: No Way Home, there was some expectation that Marvel would put him on the big screen first by making him Spidey’s next big bad, but it’s since become apparent that Sony has their own plans for Kraven, who may be going on a hunt that doesn’t involve the wallcrawler at all.

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Related: Venom 2 Trailer References Raimi’s Spider-Man Movies (Are They Connected?)

Many hoped that there would be crossover potential for the MCU and SPUMC, especially since Spider-Man: Homecoming’s Vulture actor, Michael Keaton, made a surprise appearance in the Morbius trailer. However, Aaron Taylor-Johnson being cast as Kraven throws a wrench in any plans for that since he played Quicksilver in Age of Ultron. Granted, the MCU’s Quicksilver is dead and may not ever come back, but this was a big role and one that he’s still remembered for. It wasn’t really considered a problem for Marvel to give Captain Marvel’s Gemma Chan the Sersi role in Eternals since she and Minn-Erva are two visually distinct people, with the latter being a minor character. That’s not unlike the situation with Michelle Yeoh’s two MCU characters in Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2.

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It’s a different story with Aaron Taylor-Johnson. It’s very difficult to imagine this actor playing two major characters in the same cinematic universe in a way that works. Some believed that with the multiverse being integral to the MCU’s future, it would also be the key to working the SPUMC into the MCU so that characters like Tom Hardy’s Venom can at last meet Spider-Man (Tom Holland). It was thought that the world of Venom, Morbius, and Kraven could exist in its own corner of the MCU’s multiverse, but that solution has problems too. Regardless of the multiverse explanation, it would still be confusing for audiences when they recognize Kraven the Hunter as the late Pietro Maximoff.

What this particular piece of casting news may mean for the SPUMC and the MCU is that their worlds may stay separate. That may dim hopes for fans who thought that Sergei Kravinoff still had a chance of to appear in Spider-Man: No Way Home or at least get an opportunity to square off with Tom Holland’s Peter Parker in Kraven the Hunter or one of its sequels, but instead Sony may look to build its characters and their worlds without the presence of the MCU’s heroes.

More: MCU: Spider-Man Will Never Be Venom (And That Sucks)

  • Venom: Let There Be Carnage (2021)Release date: Sep 24, 2021
  • Black Widow (2021)Release date: Jul 09, 2021
  • Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings (2021)Release date: Sep 03, 2021
  • Eternals (2021)Release date: Nov 05, 2021
  • Spider-Man: No Way Home (2021)Release date: Dec 17, 2021
  • Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness (2022)Release date: Mar 25, 2022
  • Thor: Love and Thunder (2022)Release date: May 06, 2022
  • Black Panther: Wakanda Forever/Black Panther 2 (2022)Release date: Jul 08, 2022
  • The Marvels/Captain Marvel 2 (2022)Release date: Nov 11, 2022
  • Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 (2023)Release date: May 05, 2023
  • Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania (2023)Release date: Feb 17, 2023
  • Morbius (2022)Release date: Jan 21, 2022

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