There are no less than six central Spider-People swinging around Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse. Phil Lord and Chris Miller’s animated adventure primarily centers on Miles Morales (voiced by Shameik Moore), a Brooklyn teenager who gains superpowers after a radioactive spider bite. Along the way, he crosses paths with a middle-aged Peter Parker (Jake Johnson) and the rockstar Spider-Gwen (Hailee Steinfeld). There’s also Spider-Man Noir (Nicolas Cage), a brooding black-and-white hero straight out of a 1930s mystery, and the bubbly Peni Parker (Kimiko Glenn), a middle schooler with an enormous spider robot suit.
Oh, and then there’s Spider-Ham, the anthropomorphic pig voiced by comedian John Mulaney.
In a film stuffed with silly cameos and jokes, Spider-Ham might just be the silliest. And although Spider-Verse may be his big screen debut, he actually has a long comics history, first showing up in a 1980s Marvel one-off. (He was initially introduced as a spider who was bitten by a radioactive pig, thus gaining the powers of both.) That first issue introduced animal versions of other Marvel heroes, including Captain Americat and Hulk-Bunny, but Peter Porker (no, really) proved so popular that he’s popped up in various Marvel comics over the last few decades.
EW has an exclusive look at Spider-Verse’s Spider-Ham in action in the video above, which introduces Mulaney’s take on the character. Producers Lord and Miller first met the comedian a few years ago when he served as the MC of a wedding rehearsal dinner they attended.
“It was full of comedians and actors and all sorts of really talented people, but he was the funniest person I had ever seen,” Lord told EW. “He was just coming off of stuff off the top of his head, reacting to things that were happening on stage, and he was just so hilarious. It was like, this guy is the funniest person I think I have ever seen in my entire life.”
“In a room full of funny people!” Miller added.
“And when it came time to see whose voice would match to this ridiculous cartoon pig, it was a pretty easy choice,” Lord said with a laugh.
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse hits theaters Dec. 14.