Marvel’s animated hit Spider-man: Into the Spider-verse took the world by storm in 2018, with its sequel, Spider-man: Across the Spider-verse, generating buzz these days. But did you know there was an animated Lego version of the sequel? And it was all done by Preston Mutanga, a 14-year-old teenager?
Preston isn’t an ordinary teenager, and his Lego recreations aren’t ordinary little clips kids make these days. This talented young mad amazed the movie’s producers that they decided to hire him!
In January of this year, Preston shared his creation on social media, tagging the film’s producers and writing, “I recreated the entire Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse trailer in LEGO!”
— LegoMe_TheOG (@FG_Artist) May 24, 2023
Little did he know that his efforts would catch the attention of Phil Lord and Chris Miller, the producers behind both The Lego Movie and Spider-man: Across the Spider-verse. “We found out that it was a 14-year-old kid who made it, and we were like, ‘This looks incredibly sophisticated for a nonadult, nonprofessional to have made,'” Miller told The New York Times. “It blew us all away, including some of the best animators in the world.”
Lord even responded to Preston’s trailer, saying, “Well done!!! Where were you in 2014? Oh wait, you were 6.” Preston replied that he was “closely observing the movie” at the time, which I’d say is quite obvious. Lego also replied to his tweet with a really cute message: “In a Multiverse of possibilities we think you built the best one! Thank you Preston, you’re one of our best.”
Well done!!! Where were you in 2014 oh wait you were 6
— Phil Lord (@philiplord) January 3, 2023
In a Multiverse of possibilities we think you built the best one! Thank you Preston, you're one of our best. 🕸
— LEGO (@LEGO_Group) June 7, 2023
Preston’s animation skills are truly remarkable, as you can see from the video. Here’s a side-by-side to get an even better idea:
Did you know 14-year-old animator, Preston Mutanga (@FG_Artist), known for this viral LEGO Spider-Man: Across The Spider-Verse trailer also animated the LEGO scenes in the film? 👏 pic.twitter.com/nQmtZ4E8ib
— GameSpot (@GameSpot) June 5, 2023
Now comes the best part: his remarkable skills landed Preston a great gig: he was invited to contribute to the new “Spider-verse” movie! The filmmakers wanted to include an homage to The Lego Movie, and they believed Preston was the perfect person to help bring their vision to life.
Preston’s parents were skeptical at first. However, it was real. According to The New York Times, Preston received a new computer and high-end graphics software, and he worked on the scene from his home in Toronto. He animated the shots during his spring break and made revisions after completing his homework.
Reflecting on the opportunity, Preston told The Times:
“One new thing I learned was definitely the feedback aspect of it, like how much stuff actually gets changed from the beginning to the final product. Getting to work with the people who actually made this masterpiece was honestly like a dream.”
First of all, I love seeing that a person in their teens is interested in creating visual art and doing something this creative. This alone is pretty impressive, and not to mention how great Preston is at it! I’m really happy that his talents were recognized by industry leaders, and I hope we’ll get to see him holding a little golden statue in a few years. In the meantime, find his fantastic Lego creations on Twitter and his YouTube channel.