Sony went full steam ahead with its plans for a Sinister Six film back in 2014. As a result, The Amazing Spider-Man 2 became a clunky and overstuffed affair, as it practically turned into a 142-minute commercial for the all-villain team-up. Then the Sony leaks happened and everything was rebooted.
After Tom Holland's warm reception as Spidey in the Marvel Cinematic Universe's Captain America: Civil War and the co-produced Spider-Man: Homecoming, Sony kickstarted its plans for a new Spider-Verse, internally titled Sony's Universe of Marvel Characters (SUMC). Keeping in mind that the studio has the rights to approximately 900 Marvel characters, it could be massive, and we've already seen the likes of Venom, Morbius, Kraven the Hunter, Silver Sable and Black Cat movies get greenlit for production.
Speaking to Variety, Sanford Panitch, president of Columbia Pictures, said: "We're focused on being faithful to the comics. Spider-Man connects to a lot of the characters. There are villains, heroes and antiheroes, and a lot are female characters, many of whom are bona fide, fully dimensionalized and utterly unique."
The lack of a Sinister Six announcement is peculiar, though, especially since Sony was so hot on the idea before. The Amazing Spider-Man's director, Marc Webb, even revealed to Den of Geek that a Sinister Six film was meant to be the main priority after The Amazing Spider-Man 2.
"They were going to make a Sinister Six movie before we did the third one," said Webb. "Chris Cooper was going to come back and play the Goblin. [He] was going to be the main villain. He was going to come out and lead the Sinister Six. We had talked about Vulture a little bit too, actually."
Drew Goddard spoke proudly about working on the script to IGN. "I love that script; it was really fun," said Goddard. "I love the artist I was working with. The trick with Sinister is that I was making everyone the protagonist and less about six-on-one and more about coming at it a little differently. That was the idea."
Why has Sony cooled on the idea, then? Depending on the iteration of the team chosen, it could feature the likes of Doctor Octopus, Electro, Vulture, Sandman, Green Goblin and Scorpion in a Suicide Squad-styled movie. That's certainly bigger than any proposed Nightwatch or Jackpot movies. So, why the reluctance to get this into production?