For Nadji Jeter, reprising the role of Miles Morales in Insomniac’s Spider-Man 2 was not just about web-swinging; it was an opportunity to acquire new skills. Jeter delved into the realm of American Sign Language (ASL) for his portrayal of Miles, who uses sign language to communicate with street artist Hailey Cooper in the game. The inclusion of ASL has been widely praised for its positive representation of the deaf community.
Speaking about his experience with ASL, Jeter expressed gratitude for the great teachers on set, emphasising the importance of inclusivity. He stated, “I feel like we’re touching a lot of communities and a lot of people out there that can sometimes feel like they get excluded. But in Spider Man 2, everyone is connected with this game.”
In Spider-Man 2, Jeter also formed a special relationship with Tony Todd, who plays Venom in the game. Describing Todd as “Uncle Tony,” Jeter shared the excitement on the motion capture set when Todd was present, likening it to having the President there.
Spider-Man: Miles Morales, the previous instalment in the franchise, received acclaim both critically and commercially, selling over 6.5 million copies. Jeter has been involved in voicing Miles across various mediums, including Spider-Man on Disney XD and Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3: The Black Order. Spider-Man 2 has continued the success, breaking records as the fastest-selling PlayStation game in history, with 2.5 million copies sold within the first 24 hours.
Jeter expressed his joy at the opportunity to redeem the missed moments during the release of Spider-Man: Miles Morales, which coincided with the pandemic. Attending conventions and enjoying the positive reception of Spider-Man 2 has allowed him to connect with fans and share in the excitement.
Reflecting on his journey with Miles Morales, Jeter noted that playing the character allowed him to tap into his inner child, fostering creativity and imagination during mocap sessions. He also highlighted his strong bond with Yuri Lowenthal, who voices Peter Parker in the game, both on and off the camera.
The actor’s admiration extended to Tony Todd, emphasising the privilege of working with such a seasoned performer. Jeter described Todd as a mentor who has taken him under his wing.
Discussing the relatability of Miles Morales, Jeter drew parallels between his own experiences of growing up without a father and the challenges faced by Miles in the game. He emphasised the unique aspect of being a mixed-race individual and the struggles of finding identity in both communities.
Addressing the future, Jeter expressed openness to the idea of playing Miles in a live-action Spider-Verse film if the opportunity arises, showcasing his dedication to the character and the incredible journey he has had since portraying Miles as a high school freshman to now seeing him in college.