Kraven the Hunter: Ultra-violent footage for Sony’s R-rated Marvel film hits CinemaCon during the Spider-Man panel

During the studio’s Spider-Man presentation, Sony announced Kraven the Hunter, starring Aaron Taylor-Johnson, is Rated R and more.

Last Updated on April 28, 2023

A multiversal rift is opening at CinemaCon 2023, bringing super-powered characters from Sony‘s extended Spider-Verse to the stage! During the studio’s presentation, Sony gave guests more details about its animated sequel, Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse, and Kraven the Hunter.

During Sony’s Spider-Man presentation, the studio revealed Kraven the Hunter is rated R. The film is an origin story depicting how Kraven became one of the greatest Marvel villains. The footage of the upcoming movie screened during the presentation showed off the ultra-violence that earned the project a mature rating. The trailer shows Kraven brutally killing poachers. He even rips the nose off a guy with his teeth. Russell Crowe plays Kraven’s father. The gore in the trailer is over-the-top, with Kraven gutting his opponents. It ends with a brief glimpse of the villain, The Rhino. The trailer hits theaters this summer.

Kraven the Hunter, Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse, CinemaCon, 2023

Sony’s Kraven the Hunter stars Aaron Taylor Johnson (Bullet TrainGodzilla) as Sergei Kravinoff, Spider-Man’s number-one rival. During a chat with Variety, Taylor-Johnson said his version of the character would be a significant departure from the comics. He went on to say that he is “not an alien or a wizard. He’s just a hunter, a human with conviction.” The following description baffles some fans as Taylor-Johnson confirms that Kraven is “an animal lover and protector of the natural world in the movie.” This character trait alone goes directly against the character’s central core, as depicted in the comic books.

Ariana DeBose, Fred Hechinger, Alessandro Nivola, Christopher Abbott, and Russell Crowe also star.

For Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse, one of the film’s three directors, Kemp Powers, took the CinemaCon stage. He said, “You’re only getting one director because we’re trying to finish the movie.” Shameik Moore (Miles Morales), Issa Rae (Jessica Drew), and Hailee Steinfeld (Gwen Stacy) also showed up. Moore says the movie takes place one year after the original. The crowd saw 14 minutes of the film. Last year, we saw the first fifteen minutes. This presentation was different (it wasn’t a chunk – more like an assembly of scenes) and featured, for the first time, some of the music by Daniel Pemberton, which is outstanding.

The footage is unfinished, but the soundtrack was final and outstanding, with a mix of original songs and Pemberton’s score. The movie sets up Morales and Gwen Stacy’s romance, with her taking him on a web-slinging city tour. It sets up the premise that there’s an elite society of Spider-People, who are trying to keep the Spider-Verse from collapsing, including Jessica Drew and Miguel O’Hara. Gwen has been invited into their inner circle, but they think Miles must prove himself before joining. In this movie, Miles has come to terms with being Spider-Man, but he’s also figuring out what kind of hero he will be and coming into his own.

Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse looks like it will be epic. JoBlo’s Chris Bumbray says he’s always believed that Into the Spider-Verse was the most fantastic Spider-Man movie ever made, and this one, which is the first of a two-parter, looks like another epic. They’re cooking up so

Joaquim Dos Santos, Kemp Powers, and Justin K. Thompson direct Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse from a script by Phil Lord, Christopher Miller, and Dave Callaham. Shameik Moore (Miles Morales), Hailee Steinfeld (Gwen Stacy), Oscar Isaac (Miguel O’Hara), Jake Johnson (Peter B. Parker), Issa Rae (Jessica Drew), Brian Tyree Henry (Jefferson Davis), and Luna Lauren Velez (Rio Morales) star, with Daniel Kaluuya, Shea Whigham, Rachel Dratch, Jason Schwartzman, Jorma Taccone, and Karan Soni.

“When Miles Morales is unexpectedly approached by his best friend and love interest Gwen Stacy to complete a mission to save every universe of Spider-People from a mysterious new villain who could cause a catastrophic disaster, Miles is up for the challenge,” reads the official synopsis for Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse. “He and Gwen journey through the Multiverse together and meet its protectors, a group of Spider-People known as the Spider-Force. However, Miles finds himself at odds with the Spider-Force on how to handle the threat.” Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse will debut on June 2, 2023, followed by Spider-Man: Beyond the Spider-Verse on March 29, 2024.

In addition to Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse, Sony is releasing a brand-new original short film set in the Spider-Verse, titled Spider-Man: The Spider Within. The short debuts exclusively at the Annecy International Animation Festival this June following the release of Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse. The short will find Miles Morales (Shameik Moore) struggling to “balance his responsibilities as a teenager, friend and student while acting as Brooklyn’s friendly neighborhood superhero. After a particularly challenging day living with these pressures, Miles experiences a panic attack that forces him to confront the manifestations of his anxiety and learn that reaching out for help can be just as brave an act as protecting his city from evil.” The Spider-Verse short is part of Sony’s new mentorship program LENS (Leading and Empowering New Storytellers), which provides “high-potential candidates from underrepresented groups an opportunity to gain valuable leadership experience.”

What do you think about Kraven the Hunter being ultra-violent? Let us know in the comments.


About the Author

Born and raised in New York, then immigrated to Canada, Steve Seigh has been a editor, columnist, and critic since 2012. He started with Ink & Pixel, a column celebrating the magic and evolution of animation, before launching the companion YouTube series Animation Movies Revisited. He's also the host of the Talking Comics Podcast, a personality-driven audio show focusing on comic books, film, music, and more. You'll rarely catch him without headphones on his head and pancakes on his breath.