- The iconic moment in “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse” happens when Miles Morales takes a leap of faith.
- Directors Bob Persichetti, Peter Ramsey, and Rodney Rothman tell INSIDER the visual imagery of the Miles “rising” in the scene was conceptualized before they had a script.
- The directors also confirmed a fan theory about the scene: The windows shatter because his fingers are still sticking, indicating how fearful he is, and how he takes the leap anyways.
In one of the most breathtaking movie moments of 2018, “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse” hero Miles Morales finally takes a “Leap of Faith.” As he jumps from a skyscraper, the glass windows underneath Miles’ hands shatter.
As fans have guessed, this was meant to show how Miles was still scared. The three “Spider-Verse” directors – Bob Persichetti, Peter Ramsey, and Rodney Rothman – confirmed the fan theory during an interview with INSIDER ahead of the release of the movie’s digital release on February 26.
“Yes exactly,” Rothman said when INSIDER asked about the glass-breaking theory. “That sequence was built first as a very visual one, with no words. It was also built to try and test the look of the film.”
The Leap of Faith was designed before the script existed
In addition to being one of the more visually arresting sequences in a movie brimming with gorgeous animation design, the Leap of Faith scene has been lauded online thanks to the way the scene is described in Phil Lord and Rodney Rothman’s script.
Sony published the full “Spider-Verse” script online, and people noted the way the Leap of Faith scene was poetically written.
POETIC CINEMA pic.twitter.com/OpUxtWanz0
— Javier ???? @ Pax West (@JusticeWay007) December 31, 2018
“Miles walks to the edge of the roof, the wind buffeting … and LEAPS!,” the script says. “The camera is UPSIDE DOWN. Miles isn’t falling through frame. He’s RISING.”
When asked about bringing that script line to life, Persichetti, Ramsey, and Rothman said it was actually the other way around – that visual of Miles rising through the frame came from early visual development (viz-dev) tests.
“Interestingly, the visual was there before the words,” Persichetti said. “That was transcribed from the first test. It was one of those moments where someone does something really evocative and powerful and expressive and [we went], ‘Let’s put that in the script.'”
“Miles always has his ‘Rise Up’ moment, but the inversion of it all was done by an early viz-dev guy named Alberto Meigo,” Persichetti continued. “And it was super-beautiful, animatic, and a lot of that became a big element of the actual movie sequence. It was a real catalyst [for us] to be as inversely expressive as we could be. Like, ‘Oh, my God, if you could just turn the camera the other way, it just takes everyone’s breath away.'”
The visual cues for Miles were baked into that scene from the start
The Leap of Faith happens in “Spider-Verse” after Miles is left behind by all the Spider-People because he isn’t able to fully control his newfound powers yet, and his new friends don’t want him risking his life. But Miles determinedly suits up and goes to the top of a skyscraper before making his big jump.
We know from earlier scenes that Miles’ fingers stick to surfaces when he’s anxious or scared. As he prepares to leap from the building, his fear is still there. But he jumps anyways, the glass shattering as his still-sticky hands push away from the windows.
The directors say this is why the early visual tests of Miles were all built into the first-ever teaser trailer for “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse” (above) released in December 2017. They were piecing together the look and feel of the movie, even if some of the specifics still needed to be fleshed out.
“It does have voiceover, but there’s no dialogue – it’s all images that largely existed from a very early point when we didn’t have a script,” Rothman said. “[The scene] acts as a pure visual expression of Miles Morales, and how he would move, and how the camera would portray him, and the fact that that then became the Miles thumbprint sequence. It became such a dynamic image, we hung onto it. “
“Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse” is available now digitally, and comes out on 4K, Blu-ray and DVD on March 19.
- Read more:
- ‘Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse’ has one end-credits scene – here’s what it means for future sequels
- There are 8 versions of Spider-Man in ‘Into the Spider-Verse’ – here are the actors behind each one
- Stan Lee’s cameo in ‘Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse’ will make you have serious feels
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