More details have arisen regarding today’s massive news that Sony would be scrapping Spider-Man 4, kicking out Sam Raimi, Tobey Maguire, et al., and rebooting the series. EW reports that Sony wants “a more gritty, contemporary redo of the series,” and are focused on younger, up-and-coming directors. I’m going to try and be optimistic and not take that to mean Sony wants someone who can make a good film, but more importantly won’t have enough weight to push any independent artistic decisions.
EW also reports that Sony was always aiming to reboot the series in 2012 no matter what, but they did want one last outing with Raimi, Maguire, and co. This means that Sony just pushed up the timetable on setting up a crappy precedent where they don’t have to use over forty years of material from the comics, but can just keep redoing the series to suit the demographic with the most purchasing power at the time. That’s why when Sony means Peter Parker is going back to high-school, it means they’re skewing towards the Twilight crowd because they know the fanboys will nut up, take it, and then complain about it after they’ve already paid x-amount of dollars to see it (most likely in 3D; Sony hasn’t announced that for this new movie, but it’s a safe assumption they’ll jump on that bandwagon as well).
Hit the jump for more details on the Spidey reboot story, including the status of the script, why Sony is rushing to get this film made, and when we can expect to hear who the new director and star of the series will be.
Variety explains that Sony must continue to actively develop the Spider-Man franchise or else the rights revert back to Disney/Marvel. Knowing that along with their intended 2012 reboot, it should come as no surprise that James Vanderbilt’s (Zodiac) script for the new film is already written. The story of the teenaged Peter Parker is now in preproduction with the announcement of the new director and star expected in the coming weeks. I wish there were a way to measure the groans/outrage from fanboys when the young, unknown actor to be the new web-slinger is announced.
There’s very little hope to be found in this reboot mess, and I’m trying to movie myself to indifference and focus on projects that I may end up enjoying. Maybe if they get a strong director on board or a young star who has real acting talent, I may not be as depressed writing about this new Spider-Man, but it’s hard to muster up any enthusiasm at such a rancid business move that cynically chooses to ignore the potential for better stories in order to water down the one we already saw and enjoyed.