I really loved Marc Webb, or at least what he did with (500) Days of Summer. I don’t relish the idea of loathing him in the future. But it’s official now — Webb has been confirmed as not just the director of the Spider-Man reboot, replacing Sam Raimi, but of the next three Spider-Man flicks.
I know — production won’t even begin until the fall, but you’re already sick to death of Spider-Man reboot news. Apologies, but with casting in the works, it’s not likely to end until the 2012 release date, at which point we can begin pontificating on the villain in the second movie (I hear it’s going to be the Joker!).
Anyway, the idea behind hiring Webb to take over the new series is that Sony could do it on the cheap, or at least inasmuch as $80 million is on the cheap (that’s a good $180 million less than Spider-Man 3). I’m not sure why they need to cut corners — worldwide grosses recouped the cost of the last one several times over. But a reboot means a lot more of Peter Parker pre-costume, which means pre-action sequences, which means: Less money. And the reality is, we’re all going to see the damn movie anyway. Bad reviews won’t keep us away. Terrible casting won’t keep us away. Nothing will. There’s an audience, and it’s huge. And with Webb on board, and a new set of younger, hipper whippersnappers, the audience is going to get even bigger, bringing with it a new generation of Spidey fans.
At least Webb is saying all the right things so far:
“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.”
Lookit: Marc Webb is clearly a great director, and the fact that the reboot is probably going to focus more on character than on action sequences is probably a good thing, in addition to costing less money. So, maybe there’s no need to be skeptical. Maybe this is a good movie — God knows, Sam Raimi didn’t get it done with Spider-Man 3. Maybe it’s time to give another guy a stab at it.
So, I’m cautiously optimistic. At least until anyone from Twilight or High School Musical is cast in the movie, which is expected to return to high school and explore (or re-explore) Spidey’s origins. The best thing they can do, really, is find an unknown, because right now, there’s not a lot of high-school aged kids that fit the bill that I could abide by.