Spider-Man Returns, But Will Kirsten Dunst?
Sam Raimi and Tobey Maguire recently put to end months of gossip and signed on the dotted line for a fourth and fifth installment of "Spider-Man." The only principle not yet confirmed for the wildly successful franchise is Kirsten Dunst as Mary Jane Watson, though she's made recent statements that she wants to continue with the series. "Kirsten, I'd love to work with her again," Raimi told MTV's Splashpage: "I hope she'll be written into it. I couldn't imagine making one without her, and I think she's an important part of the movies."
Maguire will, of course, return as Peter Parker though Raimi's exact connection to the production seems a bit more up in the air. "I'm really excited about Spider-Man, and I'm hoping to direct it," said Raimi. "I don't have a script yet, but production would start probably by March of 2010, I'm guessing. It sounds like a long time away, but we need a script first, and a lot of pre-production has to take place."
There's also been much talk over whether or not the two movies will be shot back-to-back, like the "Lord of the Rings" films. As Raimi tells it, that too has yet to be determined. "It's [Sony Pictures Studio Head] Amy Pascal's decision. I don't think it has been decided yet, and she's the one that's really going to make that decision; I'm really curious myself."
Though there are no details on the story for Spider-Man 4 and 5, Raimi has hinted that the two movies will be connected. "If Tobey and me, and all the producers, like the story for two pictures and Amy wanted to do it, then we would do it. It just hasn't been written yet." Screenwriter James Vanderbilt, who wrote Zodiac, has been signed on to write the script. Sony is still casting for the films' villain, though internet speculation has lead to talk of Dr. Curt Connors, played by Dylan Baker, turning into The Lizard as he did in the comic series. There is even talk of Mary Jane's astronaut ex-fiancée John Jameson undergoing a transformation into Man-Wolf.
Raimi has admitted previously that shooting Spider-Man 3 was exhausting, so he's understandably daunted by the prospect of shooting two special-effects laden blockbusters at the same time. "It would be a real endurance test, probably only Peter Jackson knows how hard something like that would be."
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