With The Amazing Spider-Man getting released on Blu-ray/DVD November 9, earlier today I was able to sit down with director Marc Webb for an exclusive video interview. Webb recently signed on to direct the Spider-Man sequel and news broke this morning that Jamie Foxx is going to play the villain Electro, so the timing of this interview couldn’t have been better.
During our wide ranging conversation we talked about his appreciation for Jamie Foxx, his thoughts on the financial success of the film, why he cut out certain scenes, how Peter Parker’s parents will be a serial element over the course of the trilogy (he said “I need to leave some juice for the second movie”), what kind of deal he made with 20th Century Fox to get to do the Spidey sequel, and more. In addition, with Webb hard at work on the sequel, he revealed why he wanted Electro as the villain, how Oscorp plays a big role in the Spider-Man universe, how they’re revising the Spider-Man suit, that they’re shooting entirely in New York City, they may use some new techniques for the 3D, but no matter what the sequel will be released in 3D, he is in a “testing phase” with IMAX, and I tried to find out how many villains will be in the film and how large a role Mary Jane Watson plays. Hit the jump for more.
Since many of you like to read transcripts rather than video, here’s a few choice quotes followed by the time index of the interview and the video. If you have the time, I strongly suggest watching the video, as you can hear me attempt to get a lot of sequel news.
How Peter Parker’s parents are important to the grand arc of the trilogy:
“[The story with the parents] is the long shadow that’s cast over the three films. I want these films to have a serialized component, and there’s a slow burn to that. I need to leave some juice for the second movie. That was one of the more exciting things about creating Spider-Man, was that I could create more than one and there was a serialized component to it.”
What he learned from making the first movie that he’ll bring to the sequel:
“We’re taking it one at a time. I think one of the things I’ve learned… There are a lot of things that are harder than it seems, like designing the suit, for example. We’re doing some revising on that. We’re making some cool improvements on the suit. Just how it was surprising to me when I made (500) Days of Summer it was completely under the radar, you know what I mean? There were no paparazzi around snapping pictures of the set. As we were shooting the movie, you realize just how big and curious the audience is for Spider-Man, how everybody feels a sense of ownership. And it’s really wonderful! That curiosity is pretty fantastic and inspiring, just to see how much people care about the character. It was staggering. It was overwhelming.”
“When I was thinking about the universe as a whole—and I talked about this with [screenwriter] Jamie Vanderbilt way back in the day—that all crazy stuff in this universe emerges from Oscorp. Oscorp predates Spider-Man and Peter Parker. His parents were involved in some way. And Oscorp represents… The building itself, there was something iconic about it. To me it’s like the Tower of Babel, which is this testament to man’s hubris. Peter’s relationship will evolve with it over time. That was really one of the central components, one of the pieces that tied all these stories together, this relationship with Oscorp.”
So why Electro?
“I think Electro is an incredibly visual, exciting, dangerous villain. There is a lot of appealing stuff that is going to happen as the world emerges.”
Where they are at in production:
“The script’s done. We’re doing little tweaks here and there for characters and locations. But it’s done and it’s fantastic. I feel really, really good about it.”
- Talks about his appreciation for Jamie Foxx from In Living Color up to Django Unchained
- 1:00 – Webb focuses on telling the story, but financial success is nice because it gives you more leeway with the studio.
- 2:10 – Says the editing process is a continuation of writing. He cut some scenes because they were redundant or no longer fit what he wanted from the film, including the scenes that delved deeper into Spider-Man’s origins.
- 4:00 – Talks specifically about how the story with Peter Parker’s parents will be a serial element over the course of the trilogy. “I need to leave some juice for the second movie.”
- 4:40 – Explains his deal to make another Spider-Man for Sony when he owes Fox at least one movie.
- 5:00 – Right now he’s just working on Amazing Spider-Man 2 with the likely option to come back for another sequel. They are revising the suit from the first movie.
- 6:20 – Webb likes how “all the crazy stuff in this universe emerges from Oscorp.” He likens Oscorp Tower to the Tower of Babel.
- 7:30 – Why Electro? “I think Electro is an incredibly visual, exciting, dangerous villain.”
- 8:00 – Webb declines to talk about how many villains will be in the sequel or how big of a presence Mary Jane will have.
- 8:30 – The script is done. They will shoot in entirely in New York. They may use some new techniques for the 3D, but no matter what, the sequel will be released in 3D.
- 9:00 – He is in a “testing phase” with IMAX. He won’t shoot with IMAX cameras, but wants to reach for that visual and audio experience with non-IMAX equipment.