Jared Leto Embraces The Monster In A New Morbius Featurette

After pandemic delays set its release date back nearly two years, Sony's latest Marvel Comics movie is finally set to release in April. "Morbius" isn't your typical superhero fare; it follows Dr. Michael Morbius (Jared Leto) as he becomes a super-powered vampire after seeking treatment for his rare disease.

In a new featurette for the movie, Leto himself attempts to dig into the mythology of the character. The actor explains that Morbius first appeared in Marvel comics in 1971, as a villain in the Spider-Man comics. He says that the character "eventually evolved into more of an anti-hero," likely referencing the character's leap from Spider-Man villain to star of two comic magazines, "Vampire Tales" and "Adventure Into Fear," just a few years later.

Vamps used to be off-limits for Marvel

The antihero has had an impressive run in Marvel comics, appearing in many stories over the decades, but Leto points out that for a long time, characters like his couldn't exist in the comic world. "For years before that, Marvel was actually forbidden from using characters considered more on the supernatural side, the actor says in the featurette, which is titled "MORBIUS Vignette – The Lore of Morbius."

At only one minute in length, this is honestly a pretty slim featurette, but Leto's comment does scratch at the surface of some interesting Marvel lore. I didn't know much about the comic book company's monster embargo before he brought it up, but it turns out it's true: the Comics Code Authority, created in 1954, prevented Marvel creators from using horror characters like werewolves, vampires, and zombies in their works. Morbius made his first appearance on the page the very same year the code was amended.

"There's something about the character that stoked peoples' imaginations," Leto says, adding, "It really can grab a hold of you. It certainly did with me." Though this featurette seems obviously scripted, part of me expected the Method actor to start talking about the dark and twisted journey he took to embody this character. Alas, he seems pretty normal here, to the point that I had to stop and question when the last time I heard his real voice was.

This featurette doesn't include any new "Morbius" footage, but it does end on a tease; the end title card promises the movie's final trailer will premiere Monday, February 28. After that, it's just a short wait until the film itself debuts in theaters on April 1, 2022.