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El Muerto

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Bad Bunny to star as obscure Spider-Man villain El Muerto in upcoming Sony film

Don’t worry — we had to look up who the character was, too.

At Sony’s CinemaCon presentation yesterday, Sony Pictures Entertainment chairman Tom Rothman made a number of big announcements. Most of them (like production moving forward on Venom 3 and another Ghostbusters sequel) were expected. But the news that received arguably the most fanfare also left us scratching our heads a bit.

According to The Hollywood Reporter’s coverage of the event, Rothman announced a new film in their Spider-Man universe featuring El Muerto, a character who appeared in a grand total of two Spider-Man comics back in 2006.

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The movie will star rapper/producer/pro wrestler Benito Antonio Martínez Ocasio, aka Bad Bunny, who joined Rothman on stage to share his excitement about the project.

Look, I’m old, but I’ve at least heard of Bad Bunny. As far as El Muerto is concerned, I own the comics he showed up in and his name still didn’t ring a bell.

The story he’s in is about a pro wrestler named Juan-Carlos Sanchez (El Muerto), who’s forced to fight and unmask a hero as part of some ancient ritual he doesn’t want to take part in. Spider-Man ends up almost killing him accidentally before saving his life.

I’m all about obscure characters, but it’s hard to see where the appeal for this one is — especially tying him to Spider-Man. Based on how Morbius turned out, pushing minor Spider-Man characters into the spotlight via tenous narrative threads doesn’t seem to be a winning formula.

Hopefully, Sony tries to make this intriguing character’s story into something more original without shoehorning in a bunch of MCU mythology to help with the marketing push.

El Muerto is tentatively scheduled to hit theaters on January 24, 2024.


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