Since the release of Spiderman 3, the web has been buzzing about the franchise for the friendly neighborhood Spiderman. Would Sam Raimi and Tobey Maguire return? Who would the villains be? Would we get to see more Gwen Stacy, or just be stuck with Kirsten Dunst’s MJ? Sam Raimi has indeed returned and is ready to start work on Spiderman 4. To me, that is the most important issue to deal with, and I am damn glad Raimi is coming back. The guy is now, and has always been, a freaking genius. He’s done wonders with the Spiderman franchise, and Spidey 3 only sucked because the studio forced Raimi to include a villain he had absolutely no desire to work with (Venom). Let’s face it: without Venom/Eddie Brock taking up screen time, there would be more character development allowed for Sandman and the conclusion of the “new Goblin” story line.
As of right now, Maguire has not been confirmed, but he had stated in the past that he would consider returning to the franchise IF Raimi agreed to return, so there is a possibility there. Villain rumors have been floating around the web in recent weeks, most notably discussions about the Lizard, Kraven the Hunter, and the vampire Morbius. Morbius has been brought up because of quotes from Raimi himself about how much he loves vampires. Personally, I always thought that quote was taken out of context, and when the NY Post sat down to talk about The Taking of Pelham 123 with producer Todd Black, Spidey 4 came up. He shot-down the Morbius rumors, and shared a few more tidbits about the project, including potential villain ideas and one little detail that left me screaming in agony – Kirsten Dunst is set to reprise her role as Mary Jane Watson, despite earlier reports that she was going to be replaced.
I’ve never been a fan of Kirsten Dunst, but that usually doesn’t mean I’d want to bash her. I don’t typically bash people that I don’t like. But her, she is different. I respect her attempts to play an iconic character, and I’m sure she didn’t intend for her interpretation to come across as shitty as it did, pardon my french. I absolutely loathed her in all 3 films. I didn’t think she looked like MJ, and I didn’t think she had the proper sass or attitude that the comic MJ always had, but that’s not why I couldn’t stand her. I thought she was overwhelmed by superior acting talent in all three films (which, in the case of Spidey 3, is a pretty sad statement) and she proved that she couldn’t act her way out of a paper bag. She’s a decent actress. Before the MJ role, I had no opinion of her either way, and she certainly hadn’t done any film that led me to believe she was talentless. But in the Spiderman franchise, she was horribly miscast and ended up being the glaring weakness in all three films. I really wish they would’ve recast her role.
Now, on to the villains… Black spoke about the villain potential for the next film, and while he didn’t come out and see definitively who would be facing Spiderman, he did give us a clue as to what we could possibly expect. Hey, it’s not much, but still slightly news-worthy. His thoughts: “We’re just coming up with who the villain’s going to be now. We’ll be shooting in New York again. Trust me, people will appreciate who we pick, because it’ll be a big part of New York,” and that “the villain will be one of Spidey’s foes from the comic, not a character invented for the film.”
So what could that mean? The initial thought here is the Kingpin, but it’s likely that FOX still owns his rights from the whole Daredevil debacle. Kinda sad really, because Kingpin would’ve worked out great. There are still plenty of villains from Spidey’s massive rogues gallery that would work out perfectly. Second thought would be Tombstone, as the head of a major Mafia organization in the city, and if the need for another villain should arise, then perhaps Tombstone could “create” some super-powered thugs to handle most of the dirty work. If they are only thugs, then there would be little reason to show much of a back story, so inclusion of another villain in the story wouldn’t take too much away from screen time necessary for proper character development. Look at Spidey 2. Two villains, one being very minor, and the film was totally kick ass. IF that were the case, then there would be a large selection of secondary villains to choose from, like Shocker, Rhino, or Scorpion. All three would fit well in the Spiderman universe Raimi created, and they wouldn’t be too deep to add to a film with an established #1 villain. None of those guys were ever #1 material anyway.
There are all sorts of different things they could do with that very loose concept. I’m vaguely intrigued by the idea, though honestly I’d rather just see the Lizard and Kraven the hunter. It’s time for the Lizard, and the only other Spidey villain that would really fit in a story with the lizard is Kraven. Something along the lines of Connors having his “transformation” and terrorizing the city, and Kraven comes in to participate in a hunt unlike any other. It’d be perfect. I sincerely hope it works out that way, but I doubt it will. I guess as long as Raimi is involved, it will be interesting. If the studio can leave him alone to make the Spidey film HE wants to make, then it’s got a solid shot at being a damn good super hero movie. IF Kirsten Dunst seriously reconsiders how she will play MJ, maybe the character won’t suck so bad… There are a lot of ifs here, and I really don’t know what else to say about that.
So, your thoughts? Anyone have any suggestions for the possible villains or plot lines?