Most moviegoers know that Spider-Man’s alter ego is Peter Parker, a high-school nerd whose encounter with a radioactive spider turns him into a super-powered vigilante. But Morales, an Afro-Latino teenager with uncanny abilities, became a fan favorite after he donned Spidey’s mask in a series of comics with a separate continuity from the mainstream Marvel Universe. He’s also the hero of “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse,” an upcoming animated adventure from Lord and Miller.
“He’s a black Spider-Man, black and Mexican,” Lord said during a panel at San Diego Comic-Con on Friday. “I think that’s very powerful and iconic.”
The filmmaking duo was joined in Hall H by the film’s voice cast, which includes Shameik Moore (“Dope”) as Morales. Moore said it had long been his dream to play the role. Years before he was cast in “Into the Spider-Verse,” he wrote on a notebook, “I am Miles Morales. I am Spider-Man.”
But he’ll have to share the honor. Footage screened for the geek-centric crowd boasted several wall-crawlers, including Parker (Jake Johnson), who in this version has gone to seed, gotten chubby, and is not so comfortably settling into middle age. There’s also Gwen Stacy/Spider-Gwen (Hailee Steinfeld), and, in a bit of voice casting confirmation, Spider-Man Noir (Nicolas Cage), Peni Parker ( Kimiko Glenn), and Spider-Ham ( John Mulaney). And yes, Spider-Ham is all pork.
The footage screened had the jokey, irreverent tone familiar to fans of Lord and Miller’s “21 Jump Street” and “The Lego Movie.” Morales may know that with great power comes great responsibility, but he wears it pretty lightly.
“Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse” opens on Dec. 14.