Avi Arad and Matt Tolmach on passing on Spider-Man 4.

News Glen Chapman 9 Jul 2012 - 07:19

The Spider-Man producers discuss rebooting the franchise instead of making a fourth Sam Raimi movie...

The Amazing Spider-Man faced its fair share of criticism even before it hit cinemas, mainly because of the decision to reboot it so soon after Spider-Man 3 seemed too quick (although it was still a five year gap). In a recent interview, producers Avi Arad and Matt Tolmach discussed the process of scrapping the originally planned Spider-Man 4 and pursuing The Amazing Spider-Man.

Talking to Collider, Arad said that, after Spider-Man 3,"we all wanted to stay together and do one more, and what was happening, the one more was not a natural version of where we want to go, especially coming from Sam [Raimi]. Sam is not only the most honourable, terrific man but he’s very honest, honest with himself first, and for us as producers, I mean you’re literally putting it on the table, it also represents, if you don’t have your conviction you have to put your money where your mouth is. But we didn’t have a natural story, and this is Spider-Man, this is the coup de gras, you cannot break this thing ever. And it was a mutual decision, with Sam and Tobey and us, we had this story."

Tolmach added that "About half way through it, Sam feeling, trying to find his way, and it wasn’t clear, the way it had been in the past when everybody sort of knew... Sam, it’s like on Spider-Man 2, he started storyboarding the train sequence before we had a script, you knew he was going down a road. And we were struggling, and so this idea came to all of us, eventually we’re all going to be living here, let’s be smart and get in front of it. So James (Vanderbilt) did a draft of that script for us.  It wasn’t, I don’t know when things were announced, but it wasn’t until we all collectively decided, 'That one is over, let's really lean into this thing, and talk about a filmmaker, and talk about how we’re going to do it.' And the most daunting thing of all, 'Who’s Peter Parker?' And how do you do that? And so that conversation happened right after we disassembled the other one."

It sounds like, basically, Sam Raimi and his team had told their stories, then. It'd still be interesting to hear just what shape Spider-Man 4 was in before it was officially abandoned, though...


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"Who is Peter Parker?" Here's the thing. Think back to the opening line of Raimi's first film. "Who am I?" As enjoyable as TASM is, albeit still very frustrating, this line from the producers is fooling nobody.

I agree BRob.
This is more likely how it went: "Crap. Raimi's gone and Disney/Marvel are on the phone asking for their Spidey licence back. We can't just re-release the same film again, we need a new twist. Uncle Ben is old hat - what about the parents! Yes! Get on it."

I'm not sure whether to feel stupid or not - or were those responses (Arad and Tolmach) completely fluid and coherent to everyone else and just not me? Sounded like they were talking absolute wank..

"I personally believe that U.S. Americans are unable to do so because,
uh, some, uh. . . people out there in our nation don't have maps and,
uh, I believe that our, uh, education like such as in South Africa and, uh, the Iraq,
everywhere like such as, and, I believe that they should, our education
over HERE in the U.S. should help the U.S., uh, or, uh, should help
South Africa and should help the Iraq and the Asian countries, so we will be able to build up our future, for our children".

Pants film, peter was a jerk throughout, sheen was flat as ben, complete shameless reboot for the emo twilight crowd. Ifans was the one spark of light and he wasn't allowed to shine.

Why do film people talk such utter bollocks?

A reboot is always preferred to an unnatural extension. Meaning: when the prime creative force (Sam Raimi) behind the trilogy is not the one at the helm for a 4th installment, a reboot is required. Otherwise it's a disservice to moviegoers, fans, as well as Raimi's previous work. New creative team, new project.

Imagine a new Batman (4th) movie to follow the current trilogy that didn't have Christopher Nolan at the helm. If it wasn't a reboot of the series, not only would it dishonor Nolan's work, it would look like a lazy cash-in on someone else's work. Though the Spiderman trilogy is not on the same level, Raimi put his stamp on the character, if someone else takes over they should have the same opportunity and face the same challenge.

Well, I've seen worse on Internet forums....

Especially from jerks who have no goddamned experience in filmmaking (not saying you're one though!).

Disagree, but you saw the movie and you're entitled to your informed opinion.

And I didn't feel it was for the "emo Twilight crowd". Frankly, that's a rather idiotic doggerel that's been tossed around too much. I loved watching TASM. I couldn't even get through the first ten minutes of TWILIGHT.

But that's just my informed opinion.

Uh....what does this have to do with the movie and Avi Arad and Matt Tomach?

Just asking....

I also have no idea what they just said.

I always suspected it was Avi Arad's meddeling that ruined Spider-Man 3. I hear it was his decision to shoe-horn the unnecessary use of Venom and Sand-Man and it was that overstuffed quality that screwed up the story. They had a natural progression from 2 to 3, and then they abandoned it to give us a half-assed Venom story -- with a bastardized re-telling of Uncle Ben's killing by the Sand-Man to boot.

Those decisions were toy-makers decisions not storytellers decisions.

Hmmm, Avi Arad spinning a different story to what he's told us before.... What we do actually know though is that Raimi, Maguire & Dunst signed on for AT LEAST one more movie (although with 1-2 more tagged on to their contracts if things went well). Raimi wasn't confident he could meet the release date of 2011 as he wasnt happy with the script (written by James Vanderbilt) and Sony panicked due to the issue over rights reverting back to Marvel so instead they scrapped it altogether to make a low-budget reboot (originally stating a budget of around 80m). This of course became TASM, with an actual budget of 220m. Now they're covering their tracks by deviating from their story. For the record, I thought TASM was horribly paced, horribly directed, the 3D was flat, some of the casting was horrible, and the screenplay??? Well, James Vanderbilt!

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