A little over a year after it was first announced, Sony has removed the Spider-Man spinoff movie El Muerto from its upcoming release calendar. The movie was previously scheduled to open in theaters on January 12, 2024.

The main attraction here was arguably not El Muerto himself, a fairly obscure Spider-Man supporting character, but rather Bad Bunny, the multimedia star who was supposed to play the lead role. If the film does come together and get released, it would be the first live-action superhero film headlined by a Latino actor.

As Marvel.com describes him, El Muerto is a “super powered wrestler” whose powers and mask “have been passed down generation to generation. Each wrestler had to prove themselves to their oppressor, el Dorado, so that they could remain alive and keep their powers.” The character of El Muerto first appeared in a 2006 issue of Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man written by Peter David, and illustrated by Roger Cruz. It’s a particularly good role for Bad Bunny, who in recent years has wrestled at several WWE events, most recently at the company’s Backlash pay-per-view earlier this spring.

WWE Backlash With Bad Bunny
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Sony has become increasingly focused on expanding its Spider-Man franchise any way it can, primarily by making spinoffs movies for characters from Spider-Man comics. They hold the movie rights to Spider-Man’s expansive library of affiliated characters — most of which are villains. They had major success with the Venom franchise starring Tom Hardy, but had a much harder time turning Morbius, starring Jared Leto as a scientist turned vampire, into a hit.

The next Spider-Man spinoff movie, Kraven the Hunter starring Aaron Taylor-Johnson as the longtime Marvel villain, is currently scheduled to open in theaters on October 6. El Muerto isn’t necessarily canceled at this point; Sony could wind up putting it back on its release schedule at a later date. The longer it goes before that happens, though, the more El Muerto will look like a dead project.

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