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How Spider-Man: Across The Spider-Verse Got Oscar Isaac Back For The Sequel - Exclusive

At the very end of 2018's "Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse," the post-credits scene introduces us to a character named Miguel O'Hara, aka Spider-Man 2099, and his A.I. assistant Lyla. O'Hara, as his superhero identity suggests, lives in the future — in the city of "Nueva York," to be exact — and as we encounter him and his cybernetic aid, they're dealing with some alarming news.

The events of "Into the Spider-Verse" end up potentially threatening the stability of the multiverse, so Miguel and Lyla come up with a wrist device that allows Miguel to travel between universes, where he'll begin to assemble a team of Spider-Heroes to prevent all of reality from crumbling. His first stop, however, is the universe of the 1967 animated "Spider-Man" series, where he and that world's Spidey end up re-enacting a scene from the famous "Double Identity" episode.

Miguel O'Hara is voiced in that sequence by acclaimed actor Oscar Isaac, and when it became apparent that the events of the new sequel, "Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse," would expand upon that scene and make Spider-Man 2099 a major character in the story, there was one question that writers-producers Phil Lord and Chris Miller needed answered: Would Isaac come back and voice the role again?

"We were hoping," Lord told Looper in our exclusive interview with him and Miller, who added, "He's so perfect for that part." As it turns out, however, Isaac wasn't necessarily a lock to return.

Why Oscar Isaac was the perfect actor to play Spider-Man 2099

Oscar Isaac is no slouch in the superhero movie department: He's been around the Marvel block a couple of times already, playing the title villain in "X-Men: Apocalypse" and the title hero in the Marvel Studios series "Moon Knight." The question facing Chris Miller and Phil Lord was whether the busy actor would be willing to get involved with another Marvel-based franchise, even in just a voice role.

"We were hoping," says Lord, who added that there was no formal contract in place for Isaac to reprise the role. "We made a kind of gentleperson's agreement when he agreed to do [the first movie's end credits scene]. I remember we reached out to him and said, 'Just do this. We'll figure out the deal for if there's another movie. We'll figure it out when we get there.' Luckily, we did, because he's such an important part of this one."

Sure enough, Miguel O'Hara does lead his team of Spider-People, known as the Spider Society, in "Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse," and tasks them with saving the multiverse from breaking down. Haunted by his own past and obsessed with preserving reality, Miguel comes into direct conflict with Miles Morales (Shameik Moore) and Gwen "Spider-Gwen" Stacy (Hailee Steinfeld) over the sacrifices he requires from every version of Spider-Man.

"He's so perfect for that part," said Chris Miller. "He has total command, but ... you can see the humanity underneath it. He's funny also, which is great. It's something that is required for all of these characters — being able to be vulnerable, be funny, be tough when they need to be, be aspirational. The range of this team of actors on this film in what we asked them to do, and what they were able to pull off, is remarkable."

"Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse" is in theaters now.