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Amy Pascal, the co-chairman of Sony Pictures, has been discussing some well-publicized financial issues at the studio, and one quote in particular has a lot of people talking:

We are going to access Marvel’s full world of Spider-Man characters, so be on the lookout for new heroes and villains.

Is she talking about the all-but-confirmed rumor the Sinister Six will eventually appear in The Amazing Spider-Man 3 and 4? Will Spider-Man need to recruit another hero to help him win that battle? Or is Pascal talking about spin-offs set in the Spider-Man universe, such as the long rumored Venom film? We discuss below.

UPDATE:  Sony Pictures Entertainment chief Michael Lynton added more fuel to the fire with this gem of a quote:

We do very much have the ambition about creating a bigger universe around Spider-Man. There are a number of scripts in the works.

The Wrap reported the above quote from Pascal, which she said when discussing films the studio has planned over the next few years.

Like Marvel with The Avengers and Fox with the X-Men, the Spider-Man universe is certainly ripe with intellectual property Sony can use for all different kinds of films. We know, for a fact, 2014′s The Amazing Spider-Man 2 has Electro (Jamie Foxx) and Rhino (Paul Giamatti) in the film with solid actors (Chris Cooper and Dane DeHaan) as Norman and Harry Osborn. That’s a wealth of highly-paid, award-winning actors potentially playing Spider-Man villains and a few of them – most notably Giamatti – said they believe they’ll be back for The Amazing Spider-Man 3. So the formation of the villainous super team, the Sinister Six, is almost assuredly going to happen.

However, it’s of note Pascal said the above in a speech to Sony investors, not film nerds with an intimate knowledge of the Spider-Man universe. To them, an Amazing Spider-Man movie is the same as Venom movie or whomever, as long as it makes money. Personally, I think the co-chairman was primarily referring to the ambitious ideas in the already announced upcoming movies. When you talk about superhero movies, investors surely feel comfortable knowing the studio is attempting something huge like Disney. And Sony is.

The most interesting phrase in Pascal’s quote, however, is “new heroes.” In the Spider-Man universe, Spider-Man is the main hero. I’m curious what other characters fall under the Spidey banner that Sony might own and eventually incorporate into the series. Spider-Woman perhaps?

Even if Pascal was only referring to the sequels announced for 2016 and 2018, they certainly have a bevy of options at their finger tips. What’s your interpretation of the quote and what would you want to see?

UPDATE: After all that speculation, Lynton saying “there are a number of scripts in the works,” adds an interesting new wrinkle. Could he also be referring to project we’ve already heard about, such as The Amazing Spider-Man 3, 4 and a Venom film? Yes. But the wording definitely makes it sound like these are new films investors (he said this in a Q&A after the Pascal speech, via Deadline) are unaware of. Which means it likely means they’re films we’re unaware of too.

Suffice to say, no matter what these quotes mean or don’t mean, the Spider-Man universe is going to be growing.

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