I feel legitimately bad for Spider-Man fans, because in an age where comic book films and television shows are all the rage, the popular wall-crawler has had a rough go of it at the multiplex. Sure, we got two great films with Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man and Spider-Man 2 that in turn helped kick off the current superhero craze, but since then there’s been a steady decline in quality and overall interest in the red and blue web slinger.
Sure, each film has its fans and certainly has its merits. In fact, I’m actually a fan of The Amazing Spider-Man and didn’t feel that this year’s The Amazing Spider-Man 2 deserved the hate that was thrown at it. However, the new series of films have caused more contention with fans and more problems for Sony than we could have imagined. Despite earning over $700 million at the box office, TASM 2 has been criticized heavily for being the lowest-grossing Spider-Man film and was not the exciting first step toward a greater Spider-Man shared cinematic universe that Sony had in mind.
For months now we’ve been hearing of the studio’s plans to not only make more Amazing Spider-Man films, but to expand the web head’s universe to include villain-centric spin-offs for Sinister Six and Venom as well as an as-yet-unrevealed film centering on a female character. But over time those plans have steadily become less sure, following the delay of The Amazing Spider-Man 3 and the total disappearance of The Amazing Spider-Man 4. By all accounts, it looks like Sony doesn’t quite know how to proceed with the franchise, and are reportedly exploring several different options at the moment.
While we wait for the eventual announcement about Spider-Man’s big screen future, we’ve compiled a list of five possible ways that Sony could move forward with the franchise and leave the ill-fated The Amazing Spider-Man 2 behind them.