‘Spider-Verse’ Sequel Is the Franchise’s ‘Empire Strikes Back,’ Chris Miller Says

“It shows you worlds you haven’t seen,” Miller told Empire Magazine

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Writer-producer Christopher Miller compared the upcoming “Into the Spider-Verse” sequel, “Across the Spider-Verse” to Star Wars’ “The Empire Strikes Back” in scope and tone, in a recent interview.

The Star Wars sequel is known for introducing new worlds and faces, darkening the plot and weaving in some heavy emotional material to the story as well. Miller made the comparison while speaking to Empire Magazine.

“People who’ve seen Across… have told us that it feels like The Empire Strikes Back of the Spider-Verse franchise,” Miller told Empire for their exclusive issue including an image from the animated film. “It shows you worlds you haven’t seen, and it’s an emotional story that ends in a place where you need to see the third one. So, yeah: this is our ‘Empire’.”

Besides main antagonist The Spot, Spider-Man 2099, also known as Miguel O’Hara (Oscar Isaac) will present some new challenges to Miles Morales (Shameik Moore). Villain The Vulture (portrayed by Michael Keaton in the Tom Holland Spider-Man film “Homecoming”) will also make an appearance.

The story expands across five different universes — including six realities total — with new personal challenges arising for Morales as well in terms of rediscovering how he fits into the multiverse and navigating personal relationships.

“Miles thought he’d never see his friends again,” said director Kemp Powers. “But in this sequel he reconnects with Gwen, and discovers she’s part of a group of Spider-People whose mission is to protect the Multiverse. From there, he ends up on this adventure to different worlds.”

Powers directs alongside Joaquim Dos Santos and Justin K. Thompson. Returning voices from the first film include Jake Johnson as Peter. B. Parker, Hailee Steinfeld as Gwen Stacy, Brian Tyree Henry as Jefferson Davis and Luna Lauren Velez as Rio Morales. Newcoming voices will include Daniel Kaluuya as Spider-Punk and Issa Rae as Jessica Drew, aka Spider-Woman.

“He’s older, a little more experienced. But he’s missing his friends,” Moore told Empire. “He’s growing in skill, but he wants more of a challenge.”

“Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse” hits theaters June 2, 2023.