It didn’t take Sony Pictures long to find a new director to helm their recently decided reboot of the Spider-Man franchise. The studio has hired relatively unknown Marc Webb to take on the new high-profile, high-risk, high-reward project after the realization that we had seen the best we could have seen from the former cast and crew. The script is written by James Vanderbilt, who Sony had writing multiple sequels.
Webb recently received critical praise for his work on the indie film (500) Days of Summer, which starred Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Zooey Deschanel. Aside from that movie, Webb has only really done a couple of music videos for Green Day and 3 Doors Down. This makes him a bold choice for director, and it puts him in a massive position that could very easily make or break his entire career. No pressure there. And speaking of Gordon-Levitt, he seems to be the majority fan-favorite for the role of Peter Parker. The hiring of Webb makes this prospect a lot more of a legitimate possibility.
Continue reading for more and to read a full press release from Sony.
In the press release put out by Sony, it is suggested that Webb was chosen due to his ability to to get to the core of his characters. It sounds like they want to focus more on the human aspects of the character and his adventure through self-discovery as he’s transforms into Spider-Man. Webb is also said to be a fan of Ultimate Spider-Man, so there’s a chance that we’ll eventually see bits of that thrown into the mix.
Having not seen (500) Days of Summer, I’m not sure how I feel about all of this. I know for sure that that movie is nothing like a Spider-Man movie, so I find myself skeptical and yet intrigued as to how it will play out. The description above sounds like all the stuff we saw in the first Raimi movie, but with a less cartoony, superhero vibe to it, and I’m not sure if that is a good thing. It really seems to me like this is either going to go incredibly well or very, very badly…there will be no happy middle. I do, however, love the idea of Gordon-Levitt being made the web-slinger; he’s a large improvement over Tobey Maguire and could bring a lot to the table.
If you’re somehow unaware, things went south on Spider-Man 4 recently when director Sam Raimi and Sony couldn’t find an agreeable middle ground on certain points. Sony ultimately decided just to throw everything in the trash and start entirely over with a new cast and new crew. (Read: Bomb Dropped: Sony Kills ‘Spider-Man 4′ Off, Plans To Reboot Franchise)
Sony Press Release
CULVER CITY, Calif., January , 2010 – Marc Webb, the director of the Golden Globe nominated Best Picture (500) Days of Summer, will direct the next chapter in the Spider-Man franchise, set to hit theaters summer 2012, it was jointly announced today by Columbia Pictures and Marvel Studios.
Written by James Vanderbilt, Webb will work closely with producers Avi Arad and Laura Ziskin in developing the project, which will begin production later this year.
Commenting on the announcement, Amy Pascal, co-chairman of Sony Pictures Entertainment, and Matt Tolmach, president of Columbia Pictures, said, “At its core, Spider-Man is a small, intimate human story about an everyday teenager that takes place in an epic super-human world. The key for us as we sought a new director was to identify filmmakers who could give sharp focus to Peter Parker’s life. We wanted someone who could capture the awe of being in Peter’s shoes so the audience could experience his sense of discovery while giving real heart to the emotion, anxiety, and recklessness of that age and coupling all of that with the adrenaline of Spider-Man’s adventure. We believe Marc Webb is the perfect choice to bring us on that journey.”
Arad and Ziskin added jointly, “Over the years, the Spider-Man comics have been told with bold and creative new writers and artists who have re-calibrated the way audiences see Peter Parker. Marc Webb will do for the new direction of the films what so many visionary storytellers have done with the comic books. He is an incredibly talented filmmaker and we look forward to working closely with him on this new adventure.”
Webb said, “This is a dream come true and I couldn’t be more aware of the challenge, responsibility, or opportunity. Sam Raimi’s virtuoso rendering of Spider-Man is a humbling precedent to follow and build upon. The first three films are beloved for good reason. But I think the Spider-Man mythology transcends not only generations but directors as well. I am signing on not to ‘take over’ from Sam. That would be impossible. Not to mention arrogant. I’m here because there’s an opportunity for ideas, stories, and histories that will add a new dimension, canvas, and creative voice to Spider-Man.”
Stan Lee, co-creator of Spider-Man, added, “I’m excited that Sony has chosen a director with a real penchant and understanding for the character. This is a brave, bold direction for the franchise, and I can’t wait to see what Marc comes up with next.”
Added Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige, “The idea of re-imagining the on-screen story for one of the world’s most iconic superheros is sure to deliver an exciting new dimension to Spider-Man fans everywhere. There are volumes of comics and material available to inspire fresh and compelling takes on Peter Parker and his journey as Spidey and we look forward to seeing this come alive onscreen.”
MARC WEBB has won acclaim with his film debut (500) Days of Summer. He has several MTV VMAs™ including 2009’s Best Director award for Green Day’s “21 Guns,” 2006 Best Rock Video for AFI’s “Miss Murder,” and Best Group Video for The All-American Rejects’ “Move Along.” The Music Video Production Association honored him in 2006 as the Director of the Year for his work with Weezer, AAR, and My Chemical Romance.
In addition to two Golden Globe nominations including Best Picture (musical or comedy), his first feature film, (500) Days of Summer, starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Zooey Deschanel, has been nominated for three Independent Spirit Awards, including Best Feature. Webb was also awarded the Spotlight Award, which honors outstanding directorial debuts, by the National Board of Review.
With this news, and the knowledge that the new Spider-Man will be coming out in the Summer of 2012, we can assume that it won’t be long before casting announcements begin pouring out.
[Source: Vulture via /Film]