Your friendly neighborhood Spider-Man just got a much bigger neighborhood.

Sony Pictures has officially announced their 'Amazing Spider-Man' spinoffs, expanding the Spidey universe with 'Venom' and 'The Sinister Six' films.

Alex Kurtzman, Roberto Orci and Jeff Pinkner are currently writing the screenplay for 'The Amazing Spider-Man 3' (which director Marc Webb likely will direct) and after finalizing that script, will work on developing the 'Venom' spinoff, which Kurtzman will direct. Kurtzman, who co-wrote 'Amazing Spider-Man 2' and the 'Star Trek' films with Orci, previously directed the Chris Pine drama 'People Like Us.'

Separately, Drew Goddard, who recently signed on to develop the 'Daredevil' series for Netflix, has signed on to write and direct 'The Sinister Six,' a film that will focus on the league of villains developed in the 'Amazing Spider-Man' films.

'Amazing Spider-Man' producer Matt Tolmach said in a statement:

The Spider-Man comics have the greatest rogues gallery of any series, and to have the chance to explore that on film is truly thrilling. Until now, we have approached each film as a separate, self-contained entity, but with this move, we have the
opportunity to grow the franchise by looking to the future as we develop a continuous arc for the story.

The 'Venom' and 'Sinister Six' movies will be the first superhero movies released that would focus on villains and it will be interesting to see how the creative team structures a movie around characters fans are used to rooting against. It's not for a lack of trying as a Venom movie has been in development at Sony since the Sam Raimi days of 'Spider-Man 3' with Gary Ross ('The Hunger Games') and Josh Trank ('Chronicle') attached to direct at various points of development.

One wrinkle in the development of these spinoffs: heard from Paul Giamatti that he's been contracted for 'Amazing Spider-Man 3,' but says he is not set for any future films and doesn't know if he'll be involved. This could mean that some of the actors like Chris Cooper and Jamie Foxx will need to negotiate new contracts for 'The Sinister Six.' It also would indicate that Venom won't be a member of the Sinister Six, if he's off in his own movie. Does that leave us with a lineup of Lizard, Green Goblin, Electro, Rhino, Doctor Octopus and Vulture? (Poor Mysterio...)

'Amazing Spider-Man 2' is scheduled for release on May 2, 2014 while 'Amazing Spider-Man 4' begins filming next fall for a June 10, 2016 release date. So far, no release dates for either 'Venom' or 'The Sinister Six' have been announced, but Sony previously announced a May 4, 2018 release date for an 'Amazing Spider-Man 4,' which we'll assume is being held for one of these films.

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