Chinese box office: 'Spider-Man: Across The Spider-Verse' opens to so-so $17.2 million

Annecy: Miles Morales has a panic attack in Sony’s ‘Spider-Verse’ short film

Sony Pictures Animation has revealed a different side to Miles Morales, the hero of its blockbuster Spider-Verse franchise, in a short film The Spider Within: A Spider-Verse Storywhich had its world premiere on Monday at the Annecy animated film festival.

The short shows Miles/Spider-Man grappling with mental health issues, as the web-slinging teenager feels overwhelmed by school, upcoming exams and relationship drama. In the short, Miles’ anxieties take the form of a dark figure representing his alter ego and an imaginary invasion of spiders into his bedroom. But by asking his father, Jefferson “Jeff” Morales, for help, Miles manages to defeat his inner demons.

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The short film was screened at the Annecy film festival on Monday as part of a session on Sony Pictures Animation and Sony Pictures Imageworks’ LENS (Leading and Empowering New Storytellers) joint mentoring programme, which aims to develop new animation talent from underrepresented groups.

Jarelle Dampier directed The spider inside short and attended the session alongside writer Khalla Amazan, VFX supervisor Clara Chan and animation supervisor Joe Darko, along with LENS program producer Michelle Raimo Kouyate and program producer David Schulenburg.

Dampier said the plot of the film was inspired by the anxiety attack he suffered when he learned he had been chosen to take part in the LENS program.

“The day I was offered this job to direct this film I had the biggest panic attack I can remember in my life,” Dampier said. “I spent the night in the hospital. I was so excited and happy for the opportunity yet my whole body shuts down.

Exploring mental health themes in the short film, Dampier said he hoped he could “open the door to some healing conversations for everyone.”

The servant Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse has already surpassed the original 2018 Oscar winner at the box office, both domestically, where the new film has earned $225.5 million to date, and internationally, where it has grossed $164.5 million.

There is no word yet on when and how Sony will screen The spider inside to a wider audience.