Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse was a real shocker when it came to cinemas, as the drudgery of Pixar/Dreamworks-esque ‘clean’ 3D offerings were at a all-time high. However Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse managed to bring back some character and soul to animation on the big screen. Which is only funny because this was coming from under the Sony Pictures umbrella that gave us Venom. And Venom: Let There Be Carnage.
The beauty of the Into The Spider-Verse success was due largely in part to the attention to detail and use of animation technique not just for aesthetic but as a means of encapsulating the essence of character. One of the many breakdowns you would have come across was the the fact that lower frame rates were being used for Miles’ character versus in the beginning of his adopting the mantle. The lower frame rate created a more choppy animation to that of Miles’ more seasoned Spider-Men/Women/Pig. Ultimately this connoted Miles not being fully developed in his capabilities and yet to find his stride. Little details like that go a long way.
And it seems Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse will be no different. The coming sequel to Into The Spider-Verse will incorporate a whole 6 uniquely different art styles in the narrative. Multiple animation styles, given what we have already seen, is like not just an aesthetic choice, but introduces subtext and heraldry. That’s the hope anyway. Or at the very least it will be a means of contextualising the different worlds Miles and 2029 will be hop, skip and juming through.
Needless to say, it is ambitious, and producer Phil Lord had this to say about the news:
The first film had one animation style that dominates the movie. This movie has six. So we’re taking those tools, adding all the things we learned on The Mitchells Vs The Machines, and then growing them further to accommodate the ambition of this movie. Which is to wow you every time you enter a new environment, and also to make sure that the style of the movie reflect the story, and that the images are driven by feelings, as opposed to some egg-headed art project. Which it also is, by the way!
Producer Christopher Miller also went into detail of breaking down the styles from the trailer:
The two that you saw in the teaser trailer were what’s called Earth-50101, which we’re calling ‘Mumbattan’ – that’s based on an Indian comic-book look – and Nueva York from Spider-Man 2099’s world. That’s based on Syd Mead-style illustrations of what the future might look like. There’s also Gwen’s world, which is Earth-65. And that was a watercolour-wash style that’s reminiscent of the covers of her comic books. Miles Morales’ journey has only just begun – the Spider-Verse awaits.
More as things develop.