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Spider-man 4 is no more, and much of the news on this blog now pertains to a vision of Spider-man that will never be made. Tobey Maguire, Kirsten Dunst, Sam Raimi et al, will not be back in a Spider-man incarnation. I thought I ought to make that clear before continuing with the next piece of news.
Sony instead opted to reboot the Spider-man franchise with a new director, Marc Webb, with actor Andrew Garfield playing Peter Parker. Filming is set to start this December in Los Angeles, and is also expected to take place in New York. The project is being produced by Laura Ziskin and Avi Arad.
The film is scheduled for a July 3rd 2012 release.
Speaking with MTV, Sam Raimi gave some Spider-man 4 updates, revealing that the script is currently undergoing some small rewrites whilst production is preparing for a March 2010 start, aiming for a May 6th 2011 release date. Casting hasn’t started yet, but it is set to get under-way shortly.
We’re hoping that it’s the first week in March,
At the moment, pre-production is in full swing, even as screenwriter Gary Ross continues to work on the script.
He’s working on a draft, I just gave him some notes and he’s doing a rewrite right now.
The production is starting to come together. I’ve got a production designer who is starting to design the sets and the environments that the picture will take place in. We just brought aboard Scott Stokdyk as one of the two visual effects supervisors, and I worked with him on all three ‘Spider-man’ pictures.
None of the casting has really taken place, but we’re starting to think about that now.
IMAX and Columbia pictures have confirmed that Spider-man 4 will be simultaneously released in standard and IMAX theaters on May 5th, 2011. The film will be “digitally re-mastered” into the IMAX experience, it’s unlikely scenes will be natively shot in the IMAX format.
“The last two ‘Spider-Man’ releases have been available in IMAX theaters, and we’re very much looking forward to our return to a wider IMAX theatre network with this exciting new chapter in the continuing adventures of Spider-Man,” said Rory Bruer, President, Worldwide Distribution for Sony Pictures Releasing. “The addition of so many new IMAX locations will give even more fans of Spider-Man an opportunity to experience the action and adventure in a unique way.”
“‘Spider-Man’ continues to be one of the world’s most popular motion picture franchises, and we are very excited to include the latest chapter as part of our 2011 slate,” said IMAX CEO Richard L. Gelfond. “Our network has grown significantly and we continue to roll-out new theatres virtually every week, giving more moviegoers the opportunity to experience the movie in IMAX.”
“We’re so excited to once again work with our friends at Columbia Pictures, Sony and Marvel to bring this beloved superhero back to IMAX theatres,” said Greg Foster, Chairman and President of IMAX Filmed Entertainment. “The ‘Spider-Man’ franchise has been so important to the growth of our network and fan base over the years and we’re certainly looking forward to re-teaming with the entire cast and production team to bring this next chapter to moviegoers worldwide.”
In order to reach the May 6th 2011 deadline release date for Spider-man 4, as much as possible must be ready in time for the first production day, as per usual, this means that the David Lindsay-Abaire penned script should be completed by the end of summer 2009, ‘about three months’ to be more precise. SciFi wire also quizzed Raimi about potential villains for the fourth movie, but he declined to comment.
“We have to make the release date, and on all of these pictures, the ‘Spider-Man’ films–and I’m sure it’s the same as with many of the other bigger-budgeted films–they have release dates far in advance of a screenplay/ […] So it’s about getting it ready the best you can in time for the first day of production. That’s what we’ve always done, and that’s what we’ll try to do again.”
“I’m not at liberty to discuss the villains yet. […] I think I have to wait till the finished screenplay, and then it’d really be up to Sony Pictures and the producers to determine when they want to release that information. To them, it’s usually a big, a big, big thing, a big moment where they want to present the villain with the proper respect or fear that he or she deserves.”
Raimi has also spoken out about the creative power he would like to wield for the next movie. This comes after the third movie whereby presumably the studio took over some of the creative decisions (is that perhaps what lead to the crazy dancing Peter Parker scene?), via Empire:
“They really gave me a tremendous amount of control on the first two films, actually. […] But then there were different opinions on the third film and I didn’t really have creative control, so to speak.
The best way for me to move forward on films, is that I’ve got to be the singular voice that makes the creative choices on the film. I love Spider-Man so much that I’d like to continue telling Spider-Man stories. But only under those circumstances where I think I can honour him.”
MTV has spoken Spidey-4 with Sam Raimi; no real juicy gossip bits to be had, but good to hear the project is moving swiftly forward nonetheless. It does appear that the dual Spider-man 4 & 5 shooting schedule that was previously rumored may have been dropped, possibly in favor of The Avengers movie coming in 2012.
“The writers, producers and I are working out what the story will be, but we haven’t been talking in terms of Part 4 and 5. […] I’ve read that [about ‘Spider-Man 5’] also, but right now we’re just working on the story for ‘Spider-Man 4,’ just that one film.”
“We’re definitely talking about working from all the material in the comic books and nothing [invented] outside of that. All the characters or villain or villains, whatever we decide to do will be from Stan Lee’s creations or those that came after him.”
[On who will be the next villain(s)]
“I do have a pretty good idea, but I’m just not a liberty to say yet,”
[On Kirsten Dunst in Spider-man 4]
“I can’t imagine making a ‘Spider-Man’ movie without Kirsten,” he said, seemingly contemplating the idea in his head with a long pause. “Of course it can be done because Spider Man has existed without the character of Mary-Jane but she’s one of my favorite parts and it would be a shame not to have her in the picture. I’m hoping she’ll be in it and I’m planning on having a story with her in it.”
Marvel Studios have announced a slew of new superhero movie releases dates in the forthcoming years — of most interest to this crowd are Spider-man 4, now set to appear in screens nationwide on May 6th 2011 and an updated release for Iron Man 2 — now hitting theaters on May 7th 2010 (previously April 20th).
Also of significant interest are the Thor, Captain American and The Avengers movie dates which have been updated to:
Thor — June 17, 2011
The First Avenger: Captain America — July 22, 2011
The Avengers — May 4, 2012
“This new schedule strongly sequences Marvel’s movie debut dates, big screen character introductions and momentum. It maximizes the visibility of our single character-focused films, leading to the highly anticipated release of the multi-character ‘The Avengers’ film in 2012,” said David Maisel, Chairman, Marvel Studios.
J.K Simmons is set to return as Daily Bugle publisher J. Jonah Jameson in Spider-man 4, he tells MTV.
“We’ve definitely brainstormed ideas for Triple-J, but I have no desire to make Triple-J more of the focus of those movies,” he said. “The amount that I did in 1, 2 and 3, is just exactly right. Like be the wolf. Come in, blow in, do a week, blow out, be the comic relief, and hit the road. And let Tobey and everybody else do the heavy lifting.”
In speaking with Empire magazine, Sam Raimi revealed that the Morbius character interests him, might we see him in Spider-man 4?
“I like it in the Marvel comics when Spider-Man fights Morbius,” said Raimi. “He’s really cool. A vampire! I like that combination of superhero plus supernatural.”
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