After failing to grab fans with his portrayal of Joker in Suicide Squad, Jared Leto is trying his hand at playing a Marvel antihero named Morbius for Sony. The first trailer, seen above, shows Hollywood’s former prince of darkness return to his gothic roots for the role. Unlike Marvel Studios movies, which exist under the Disney banner, Morbius is entirely from Sony Pictures, much like Tom Hardy’s Venom.
The trailer introduces us to Morbius the Living Vampire (who originally appeared in Marvel comics as a Spider-Man villain), otherwise known as Dr. Michael Morbius, a Nobel Prize-winning doctor. He’s living with a rare blood condition that he needs to cure in order to live. Somehow, in the process, he accidentally turns himself into a “pseudo-vampire,” gaining vampire bat-like qualities, including echolocation and a thirst for blood. Wild!
The trailer also makes it clear this isn’t a Marvel Studios movie. Unlike Spider-Man: Homecoming and Spider-Man: Far From Home, Marvel Studios doesn’t have anything to do with Morbius. Instead, it’s being made “in association with Marvel,” which is one way to frame the relationship of which studios own which characters. That said, Sony seems eager to remind fans of Morbius’ Spider-Man comic roots: the studio plugged the names of both of its recent (Marvel Studio-produced) Spider-Man films along with Venom in the trailer. There’s also an appearance from Michael Keaton at the end of Morbius’ trailer, but it’s unclear if he’s reprising his role as Vulture from Spider-Man: Homecoming.
“Morbius” is directed by Daniel Espinosa (“Easy Money” 2010) and written by the screenwriting duo of Matt Sazama and Burk Sharpless (“Dracula Untold” 2014). The film stars Jared Leto as Michael Morbius, alongside Matt Smith (“Doctor Who” 2010-2014), Adria Arjona (“Sweet Girl” 2021), Jared Harris (”Mad Men” 2007-2015), Al Madrigal (“The Way Back”), and Tyrese Gibson (“F9” 2021).
“Morbius” is set for release in the US on January 28, 2022, having been pushed back from its initial July 2020 date due to the pandemic.