The next installment of the Spider-Man franchise could lose its coveted May 11, 2011 opening (due to script problems). Director Sam Raimi has yet to settle on a script, a process that has already involved screenwriters Jamie Vanderbilt, David Lindsay-Abaire, and Gary Ross. Currently in the hands of Alvin Sargant, who wrote Spider-Man 2 and 3, Sony is still planning on a Summer 2011 release but studio sources are saying, “It is unlikely that May 11, 2011, date will be made.”
Originally set to start filming in February, production was pushed back to early March then late March or early April. Currently there is no official start date. While Sony co-chairman Amy Pascal assured fans they were still working toward the original date saying, “I’m going to do everything I can to make May,” she acknowledged the importance of having a completed script, “…I’m not going to start a movie where the script isn’t right yet. Not unless I want my career to be over.”
Hit the jump for more on Spider-Man 4 in 3D and casting.
While there was not much talk about Spider-Man 4 being shot in 3D, the success of Avatar could change that. Both Pascal and Michael Lynton spoke to Forbes about this possibility. Pascal was vague in her response saying only, “Could be.” Lynton, on the other hand, was far more promising with his remarks, “People are paying a premium to see movies in 3-D and that’s a very big deal. It’s never been done before that someone says you have to pay more to see Spider-Man than a romantic comedy.” At this point I can’t imagine a film of this status being released without some kind of 3D component.
As for casting, Sony has locked in Tobey Maguire as Spider-Man again, and Raimi is insisting that John Malkovich play the villain. However, one potential casting casualty could be Anne Hathaway. Sony had been interested in Hathaway but a studio insider stated, “I’m not so sure we’re going in that direction.” Adding to this was the potential for Hathaway to cost too much in a role that did not need “such a big star.”
Even if Sony could get production on track the damage may already be done. May is a big month for movie releases and this news could have studios racing to fill the void. That being said, there’s little doubt in my mind that people will flock to Spider-Man 4 no matter what weekend it gets released.