Roberto Orci leaves The Amazing Spider-Man franchise

In a move that’s been anticipated since it was announced that Star Trek and Star Trek Into Darkness screenwriter Roberto Orci will direct Star Trek 3, the celebrated writer has officially parted ways with the Amazing Spider-Man franchise and the next film in the series, The Amazing Spider-Man 3.

The writer-turned-director confirmed his departure from Sony’s superhero franchise in an interview with IGN, and insisted that he’s uncertain what the future holds for Spider-Man and the planned spinoff films Sony has announced as part of its universe-building strategy for the famous comic-book webslinger.

“I don’t know what their plans are for that franchise,” said Orci. “I don’t ever want to say never, but we have to figure out what their scheduling is in terms of when they want each movie. I’ve read probably as much as anyone else. There’s a love for the Sinister Six, [and] the idea of Venom — there’s an idea that Spider-Man’s going to be one of these characters that’s part of our business. He’s such a popular character. Spider-Man’s not going to go away any time soon. When it all happens and how and all that has yet to be determined.”

Back in December 2013, it was announced that Orci and his longtime collaborator Alex Kurtzman were working on The Amazing Spider-Man 3 (several months before The Amazing Spider-Man 2 hit theaters), but since then the pair have split to go solo on individual projects — Orci on Star Trek 3 and Kurtzman on Sony’s Venom spinoff movie starring the popular Spider-Man villain. The pair continue to collaborate on television projects, however.

The Amazing Spider-Man 3 is currently scheduled to hit theaters June 10, 2016, with the Venom movie and The Sinister Six (featuring six Spider-Man villains) likely to follow the third installment of the Amazing Spider-Man franchise. Drew Goddard, the co-writer and director of The Cabin in the Woods will write — and very likely direct — The Sinister Six movie, while Kurtzman will remain involved with Sony’s expanding Spider-Man universe in various roles in addition to co-writing The Amazing Spider-Man 3 and writing/directing Venom.

As for Orci and the Star Trek universe, there’s no official word yet on when Star Trek 3 will arrive in theaters, but with 2016 marking the 50th anniversary of the franchise, it’s reasonable to expect some sort of effort by the studio to release something connected with the upcoming celebration.

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