Sony spins a Webb: “Summer” director gets Spidey reboot


In an expected move, execs of Sony and Columbia Pictures and Spider-Man franchise producers Avi Arad and Laura Ziskin have contracted (500) Days of Summer director Marc Webb to direct the next three Spider-Man movies. The news comes about a week after original trilogy director  Sam Raimi and star Tobey Maguire left the franchise for good after being unable to get Spider-Man 4 off the ground. The films will be based on writer James Vanderbilt’s scripts and will take Peter Parker back to high school. They figured who better to really flesh out the youthful dimension of Spider-Man than a young up-and-comer such as Webb.

You can read the press release here at .

The buzz on Webb being attached to the Spidey revamp has been flying around since news of Raimi’s departure. It’s now clearer than ever that Sony/Columbia has had this idea to re-imagine Spider-Man based on Vanderbilt’s script for a long time now and that a fourth Raimi installment was more a formality considering the millions of dollars that would’ve been guaranteed off another of those films. My guess would be that after No. 4 Sony/Columbia were going to say bye to Raimi anyway and go in this direction. Webb must have been a name tossed around a lot after the acclaim given to “Summer.”

The news must be a sigh of relief for Sony, to finally have reason to assure their fans that not only will Spider-Man continue, but evolve and be better. All the quotes in that press release talk about how Peter Parker/Spider-Man is a character with so many dimensions who has been interpreted by so many artists — apparently they think most Spidey fans don’t realize that there can be another creative vision for their beloved web-slinger. They also mention every single possible credential for Webb to be director considering his limited (non-existent) multi-million-dollar blockbuster directing experience. That’s kind of amusing, but anyone who has seen “Summer” can attest that Webb is in touch with a younger generation and that will undoubtedly serve the franchise well, especially with the younger Peter Parker angle.

Although I would have preferred Raimi and Maguire stay on the project, hiring Webb gives me (and hopefully everyone else) confidence in this new vision for Spider-Man. Webb is such a bold hire that really makes a statement about the clarity of the vision Ziskin and Arad have for this new Spider-Man.

No other details are given with regards to title, story or stars, but you can bet as this film moves toward production later this year to meet its 2012 release date, there will be plenty of that news in the months to come. In fact, after this announcement I will go ahead and say it’ll likely be “500 Days of Spider.”

1 Comment

  1. Jenni Hanley says:

    You make a lot of good points about Webb being in touch with the younger generation. I suppose I’m just always of the belief that you should stick with your actors because fans get attached. I was sad to hear that Tobey Maguire was leaving, for that reason.

    Still, with super hero franchises perhaps you have a different scenario. Batman, for example, has always succeeded with different Batmans, as has Superman. Maybe that’s where this is headed.

    As for Webb, 500 Days of Summer—though incredible—was a bit of a different genre. I’ll be interested to see what happens!

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