After Ralph Breaks the Internet featured a wordless animated appearance from the late Stan Lee, the upcoming Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse is the next movie in line to pay tribute to the renowned writer, with the man himself providing some voice work to the film before his recent passing.
In an interview with Fandango, producer Christopher Miller recalled how the team wanted to bring something special to the table when it came to honoring the tradition of the Stan Lee cameo:
“I remember when we talked about it, we said, ‘You know, he’s so integral to the spirit of this movie that we don’t want to just give him a little passing cameo.’ We wanted him to be more important and carry some emotional weight to the movie.”
It’s true that Spider-Verse’s visuals are significantly more comic book-like than your average comic book film, and seeing how Lee co-created the original Spider-Person, Peter Parker, it’s impossible to imagine the multi-Spidey movie ever existing without the late legend’s work. Writer and producer Phil Lord went on to acknowledge this debt, before breaking down Lee’s scene in the new Sony feature:
“Essentially we really thought since he was the guy who created the character with Steve Ditko that he should really give him something important like a talisman. So he gives him the spider suit, and says, ‘There’s no give backs.’ And we thought that was really important.”
It sounds like a moment that’s sure to get a good few fans misty-eyed, and sure enough, Lord goes on to describe how this scene resonated with the film’s early viewers:
“We certainly felt really happy to do it with him, and obviously this last week [with Stan Lee’s passing], it made it extra meaningful and moving to watch the movie get finished and just know that he gets to be such a resonant part of it. And we showed some fans the feature maybe two or three days after he passed away, and it was really emotional just watching everyone engage with it and collectively salute him.”
Though the film is still a couple of weeks away from reaching cinemas, most fans already have more than enough reasons to give the animated outing a chance, from the movie’s dazzling visuals to the overwhelming positive response from critics. As it stands, the flick holds a score of 100% on Rotten Tomatoes based on 19 reviews, and while it’s unlikely that this figure will stay so high in the coming days, it’s clear that Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse will be hitting theaters on December 14th on a wave of positive buzz.