Donald Glover to Play Obscure ‘Spider-Man’ Villain Hypno-Hustler in Sony Film

Glover previously played a different role in "Spider-Man: Homecoming," and was a popular fancast for the character.
Donald Glover, Hypno Hustler
Donald Glover, Hypno Hustler
Wireimage/Courtesy of Marvel Comics

Donald Glover is digging deep in the Spider-Man comics. The actor and writer will star in and produce a new Sony Pictures film about one of the web-slinger’s lesser-known villains, Hypno-Hustler, a source confirmed to IndieWire.

The movie is being written by Myles Murphy, the son of famed comedian Eddie Murphy. The film will be produced by Sony and set in their universe of Spider-Man-affiliated characters, the one that also includes the two “Venom” films,” “Morbius,” and the upcoming “Kraven the Hunter” and “Madame Web” movies.

Hypno-Hustler, created by writer Bill Mantlo and artist Frank Springer in a 1978 issue of “Peter Parker, the Spectacular Spider-Man,” is a relatively obscure part of the Spider-Man mythos — and a dated product of the ’70s disco craze. The character, whose real name is Antoine Delsoin, led a band called the Mercy Killers and used hypnosis technology in his instruments to commit crimes.

Sony has not shied away from plucking little-remembered comic-book characters for projects led by big stars. In 2024, we’ll get “El Muerto,” a film based on a character that appeared in just two issues of “Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man” back in 2006. The main draw for that film isn’t the super-powered wrestler himself — it’s who will be under the luchador mask. Bad Bunny, one of the biggest music stars in the world, is graduating from a supporting role in “Bullet Train” into leading-man material for “El Muerto.” Bad Bunny has also done some wrestling in WWE, which will further prepare him for the role.

Glover has an interesting history with the Spider-Man franchise. The “Atlanta” creator, star, writer, director, etc. was a popular fancast for the character back when he was still on NBC’s “Community.” Glover eventually got a chance to play the Miles Morales version of the character, albeit in animated form, on the Disney XD series “Ultimate Spider-Man” in 2015. In 2017, Glover had a small role in Tom Holland’s “Spider-Man: Homecoming,” as a character implied to be Miles Morales’ uncle. (Shameik Moore ended up voicing Miles in the 2018 movie “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse” and its upcoming sequel “Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse.”)

Glover is repped by WME and Johnson Shapiro. Murphy is also repped by WME.

News of the Hypno-Hustler film was first reported by The Hollywood Reporter.

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