Why Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse got its major live-action sequences scrapped off: Five years ago, Miles Morales and a diverse group of Spider-People were first introduced to us. Everything we saw then is amplified in Across the Spider-Verse, which sends him hurtling through the multiverse and into bizarre new realms like New York and Earth-42. Similar to the first film, there has been a lot of animation juggling. Depending on their visual style, distinct characters are often drawn differently from one another while they are on the same screen.

It takes tremendous effort to balance it off, sure enough. Some scenes get their screen time, while some get dumped. While chatting with Variety, co-director Kemp Powers explained how Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse was initially meant to include plenty of live-action sequences. But they eventually ended up clashing with the original narrative.

“It just turned into a bad joke,” explained the Directors

Kemp Powers, a co-director, claimed to Variety that the creative team’s expectations for live-action had to be severely restrained. He explained, “There were times when we had huge live-action sequences in the film, and it just turned into a bad joke. Even we didn’t like it anymore. And we just said, ‘OK, enough, let’s make sure that it’s something precise that gets the most bang for the buck and speaks to the story.”

When questioned further about what these live-action segments would have included, filmmakers Joaquim Dos Santos and Justin K. Thompson, as well as Kemp, declined to respond. The group did admit that many of the concepts were merely storyboards that were ultimately eliminated, so they never made it past the animatics stage. Powers made a joke saying, “They had the look of like a South Park character,”

The trio described their experience directing the Across the Spider-Verse:

When three different individuals are in charge of monitoring the production of “Across the Spider-Verse,” one would naturally anticipate that they would divide up the tasks involved in making the movie, especially since this is Thompson and Dos Santos’  feature directorial debut. But things weren’t quite that simple.

“I think we all shared the responsibilities, if you want to call them that,” Thompson says. “’ Responsibilities’ ‘is such an impressive word to use for what we do.”

As Powers puts it, “Everyone had to do everything.”

However, each director brought to the project a particular area of expertise — Thompson had worked as the production designer on “Into the Spider-Verse” He, therefore, devoted a lot of work to developing the film’s unorthodox visual style. Because Powers has a writing background and was nominated for an Oscar for his screenplay for the 2020 movie “One Night in Miami,” he concentrated on the plot of the movie as well as how it was performed and put together. As a storyboard artist for Nickelodeon’s “The Legend of Korra” and “Avatar: The Last Airbender,” Joaquim Dos Santos was in charge of assembling prototype sets so the production team could see how the “bigger, crazier set pieces” were coming together.

However, even within these areas of specialization, the filmmakers were rarely apart from one another for lengthy periods of time. “We’d all come back together at the end of every day and compare notes,” Thompson says. “Or in the middle of the day or in the very early hours of the morning, whatever it needed to be. It was like constantly expanding and contracting.”

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