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5 Compelling Reasons Why We Need Tobey Maguire To Return As Spider-Man

Spider-Man 2 is my favorite superhero film of all time. Anyone who’s been within earshot of me during any conversation about cinema in general should know this. I say it loud and unapologetically.

And it’s not only because Tobey Maguire will always be my default live-action version of Spider-Man (though that’s true too). It’s also because of Sam Raimi, and his distinct vision for Peter Parker.

tobey maguire spider-man

I hated the first Amazing Spider-Man, and I only barely liked The Amazing Spider-Man 2. Again, this actually has little to do with who was wearing the mask (most people agree that Andrew Garfield was at least fine, if not great in the role).

These movies just lacked the same depth and quality that we got with the first two Spider-Man movies in 2002 and 2004. And with Tobey Maguire getting on in years, it seemed like a great idea to just reboot the whole thing just five years after the disastrous Spider-Man 3.

tobey maguire spider-man

And now we have a new Spider-Man reboot on the horizon. Marvel and Sony have officially struck a deal to share the same version of this character within both Marvel and Sony’s cinematic universes.

It’s exciting news, but it also means Andrew Garfield is almost certainly done with the role, and we have to start all over again. Again.

I would have liked to keep Andrew Garfield in the mix, and there’s still a slim chance he might. But I would much rather we come back to Tobey Maguire, and here’s why.

1. It would be more faithful to “Civil War.”

tobey maguire spider-man

For what Marvel wants to use Spider-Man for, bringing Tobey Maguire back is actually perfect. Amidst reports that Marvel and Sony want to keep Spider-Man in high school, fans who actually read comics are getting frustrated.

We’ve experienced high school Peter twice now (seriously, I can’t handle Uncle Ben dying again), and Marvel is planning to debut the character in Captain AmericaCivil War.

One of the biggest reasons Marvel is bothering to make this deal (which they’re reportedly getting little financial value from) has to do with the fact that “Civil War” makes little sense without Peter Parker and Spider-Man.

Spider-Man’s role in “Civil War” is key because he’s the relatable center of conflict stuck between two people he respects. Its through Peter that we’re able to feel the real struggle between Captain America and Iron Man during their spat over privacy, a theme Marvel has been carefully building up with Phase II of the MCU.

And in “Civil War” (the comics version), Peter Parker isn’t in high school. He’s not even in college. He’s a high school science teacher years after first becoming the webhead.

That may seem like a little detail Marvel can just ignore, but it robs the story of a lot of the impact gained from when Spider-Man famously unmasked himself in public in order to support the Superhero Registration Act (and Tony Stark). But we’ll get to that later.

2. We haven’t finished Sam Raimi’s story. 

tobey maguire spider-man

Spider-Man 3 ended with the death of Harry Osborne, but we have no idea what truly became of Peter. He might have married Mary Jane, and the death of his friend could have prompted him to hang up his mask for a while.

This would explain his absence during the Battle of New York in The Avengers, which could then explain why he’d consider becoming Spider-Man again.

It could be during this time that he gains the attention of the Avengers during the prelude to Civil War, eventually leading to his famous unmasking to a public that’s known him as Spider-Man for years.

If they reboot the franchise again, then this moment won’t be nearly as powerful. Any new Spider-Man they throw in there will just be yet another actor we’re not used to.

How are we supposed to believe that the public cares about this Spider-Man if he hasn’t really been around much? Marvel could make it work because they’re Marvel, but it would be a missed opportunity.

3. The unmasking would be way more epic. 

tobey maguire spider-man

Can you imagine if the guy taking off his mask was Tobey Maguire, the guy who’s been Spider-Man in most of our heads for the last 13 years? And think about the impact of having JK Simmons reprise his role as J. Jonah Jameson and witnessing this from his office at the Daily Bugle. It’s just perfect.

And it even works within the Sam Raimi timeline because Maguire could easily be a science teacher by now. Unlike a new Spider-Man or bringing in Garfield, it actually fits.

Of course, this would sort of work for Garfield, too, but it still doesn’t fit quite as well. Unlike Garfield, Tobey’s Spider-Man is the Sam Raimi version. He’s the guy we’ve actually seen a consistent, compelling story arc with.

4. Tobey Maguire is a better Peter Parker than Andrew Garfield.

tobey maguire spider-man

Garfield did a great job, and he brought a faithful take to the character that Tobey could learn from. But Garfield was better at being Spider-Man than than being Peter Parker.

In contrast, Tobey Maguire nailed the character of Peter Parker. He was a lovable weirdo who never seemed comfortable in his own skin, unless he had the mask on. Garfield, by comparison, was never a believable outcast.

He spent most of his time charming Gwen Stacey and investigating something about his parents, or something. With Garfield, I just didn’t connect with him as Peter in the way I did with Maguire, which is a shame because, again, I had a great time watching him as Spider-Man.

5. Sony could still keep Garfield.

tobey maguire spider-man

Rumor has it Sony still wants to do Sinister Six and Venom. So my conspiracy theory of the week is that we could also see The Amazing Spider-Man 3 with Andrew Garfield still doing his thing, while Tobey returns to the fold with Marvel. Everyone wins, pretty much.

But this is less likely to happen if Sony invests in yet another reboot. While many fans probably won’t like this idea, I think it would be great fodder for the “multiverse” dimensions and realities we’ve been waiting for Marvel, Sony, and Fox to dole out with their scattered characters.

Before I go, I do want to point out that yes, I think it would be interesting to bring on Miles Morales, the half black, half latino version of Spider-Man from the Ultimate storyline.

tobey maguire spider-man

He’s a great character and would work great in his own movie, but I don’t think this is the right time and place for his story. If anything, it would make more sense to introduce him into the world already established by Marc Webb and Avi Arad.

Also, as big a fan as I am of Donald Glover, he’s just way too old at this point to be Miles Morales. Maybe in a different timeline, that’s not the case.

What do YOU think? Should Tobey stay or should he go?


Thanks for reading this. To get updates on my theories, books, and giveaways, join my mailing list.

Or just say hey on Twitter: @JonNegroni

 

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Everything We Know About Marvel’s ‘Spider-Man’ Movie, Including Who’s In It.

spider-man marvel

From Moviepilot: 

According to Marvel, the deal is that they get to have Spider-Man for one movie first (most sources say it will be Civil War), and then Sony will continue the franchise with their standalone movie in 2017 (see above). They’ll control the financing and distribution of all future Spider-Man films from then on. 

But this also means that Sony and Marvel are essentially collaborating on the same character within the same universe.

This is unprecedented, especially for a $4 billion franchise.

You can read the rest of my write-up on this subject via the link above. I get into the subject of Andrew Garfield and where Sony apparently stands on casting. We don’t know a lot of the details yet, but we can make some pretty reasonable assumptions.

Andrew Garfield Is Still Spider-man (For Now)

spider-man andrew garfield

Confirmed: Andrew Garfield is Still Spider-man:

Sorry Tobey Maguire fans, The Amazing Spider-man 3 will NOT feature a recasting of Sony’s latest franchise for the webhead. Andrew Garfield is here to stay. This confirmation actually comes from a casting call that released the starring roles for the film. It shows that both Andrew Garfield and Dane DeHaan will be reprising their roles as Peter Parker and Harry Osborne, respectively.

The above is a piece I wrote for Moviepilot upon hearing the news. In a nutshell, it highlights how Sony, after rumors of straying, has apparently decided to stick with Andrew Garfield, rather than going back to Maguire.

Honestly, I feel like I’m writing a gossip column about superheroes at this point.

If David Fincher Rebooted ‘Spider-man’

spider-man david fincher

A few years ago, David Fincher (Fight Club, Seven, Gone Girl) was one of a handful of directors considered for revamping the Spider-man franchise. Of course, Marc Webb was ultimately the final decision, but did you know that Fincher was also considered to launch the franchise back in 1999?

Though Sam Raimi did a brilliant job with at least two movies from that trilogy, a lot of people (like me) believe new blood would be a great start to rebooting Spider-man for the Marvel Cinematic Universe (you know, with the Avengers in the background).

Most of you already know that I despise 2011’s The Amazing Spider-man and moderately enjoyed this past year’s The Amazing Spider-Man 2. That said, I still think a new Spider-man franchise is worth exploring, whether it conserve Andrew Garfield or toss him.

Back to David Fincher. If he was the man behind the camera behind the cowl, we already know some of his vision for telling Peter Parker’s story. Here’s an excerpt from a 2011 interview he did concerning the last Spider-man reboot:

My impression what Spider-Man could be is very different from what Sam [Raimi] did or what Sam wanted to do. I think the reason he directed that movie was because he wanted to do the Marvel comic superhero. I was never interested in the genesis story. I couldn’t get past a guy getting bit by a red and blue spider. It was just a problem… It was not something that I felt I could do straight-faced. I wanted to start with Gwen Stacy and the Green Goblin, and I wanted to kill Gwen Stacy.

The title sequence of the movie that I was going to do was going to be a ten minute — basically a music video, an opera, which was going to be the one shot that took you through the entire Peter Parker [backstory]. Bit by a radio-active spider, the death of Uncle Ben, the loss of Mary Jane, and [then the movie] was going to begin with Peter meeting Gwen Stacy. It was a very different thing, it wasn’t the teenager story. It was much more of the guy who’s settled into being a freak.

Sounds a lot like the beginning of Spider-man 2 (2004) right? Only it would be ten minutes long and resemble more of an opera than comic book pages.

I doubt Fincher will ever be taking on Spider-man anytime soon, though it would be crazy for his first superhero film to be about the webhead. For now, we just have to assume that Marc Webb and Avi Arad still hold all the cards to Spidey’s future.

Marvel Couldn’t Convince Sony To Give Them Spider-Man

spider-man marvel sony

Alisha Grauso | Moviepilot:

As the Wall Street Journal reports, an email as recent as October 30th from Sony Pictures president Doug Belgrad to Sony motion pictures president Amy Pascal revealed that the two studios were in talks to work out a deal where Marvel would oversee and produce a new (and hopefully better) trilogy of Spider-Man films that would still allow Sony to retain creative control, along with the marketing and distribution for the trilogy. 

Pretty fair deal and one that Sony should take, if you ask me. 

But it was another email from Pascal that got my Spidey senses tingling, as it was revealed that Marvel absolutely wanted to include Spider-Man in  Captain America: The Winter Soldier.

But before you get excited and start planning the “WELCOME HOME, SPIDEY” party, I’d be remiss if I didn’t include the fact that according to sources connected with the situation, unfortunately the talks have broken down between the studios. At the moment, Sony is planning on going it alone with Spider-Man, with an ominous-sounding “Spidey summit” planned for January.

I almost feel bad for Sony at this point. This whole mess makes them look even worse in the eyes of Spider-Man fans who desperately want him in the MCU. In a way, this hack seems strategic. 

What is the Best Early 2000’s Superhero Movie?

This week on Agents of FILM, Maria and I debate over the best “Pre-Iron Man” superhero movie of the 2000s. We also review BoxTrolls and Gotham, discuss the new Big Hero 6 trailer, and let you know which new movies you can check out this weekend.

On the go? You can download the audio version of this podcast here.

Cool Things We Mentioned:

New Big Hero 6 trailer.
The Invisible Woman is adopted? 

Thanks for watching! You can see new episodes of Agents of FILM every monday by subscribing to us on YouTube or following us on Twitter (@AgentsofFILM).

Review: ‘The Amazing Spider-Man 2’

As I sat down to write this review, I quickly remembered that I also reviewed the first Amazing Spider-Man on this site two years ago, and it’s fascinating to me how little I had to say about it.

Seriously, I basically came to the conclusion that it’s barely worth watching on the basis that it has some decent effects and a mediocre story that may pay off in the long-run.

amazing spider-man 2 worth watching

Of course, I (along with most of the Spider-Man fandom) was sorely disappointed with several directions Sony took with the origin story, especially when it came to Ben Parker’s death. I understood then and now that this would be underwhelming for moviegoers like me who are still fondly remembering the original Spider-Man in 2002.

Two years and one two-hour movie later, we have The Amazing Spider-Man 2, which is undoubtedly a bigger, better version of the movie that came before it. Everything about this sequel tries incredibly hard to outdo the original, from the acting and character development to the carefully crafted action scenes.

amazing spider-man 2 worth watching

 

Even the soundtrack seems to have more thought put into it this time (with dubstep tracks being carefully placed only in sequences that feature the film’s central villain: Jamie Foxx’s Electro)

In the months leading up to this film’s release, I was obsessed with staying up-to-date with all of the featurettes, promos, interviews and trailers that did their darndest to convince us that they’d fix what went wrong with the original (which still made them plenty of money).

The first thing to note, and the film’s biggest improvement, is that Sony at least has a powerful agenda behind this film aside from their obligation to make a Spider-Man movie before their contract to the character’s rights fall back to Marvel (which most of us want to happen, ironically).

The first film felt forced, basically, because we knew Sony was only doing it to hang on to their film rights. But this time around, there’s more to Sony’s madness. Thanks to Marvels grand Avengers experiment, Sony is in the business of franchise-building, and they’re now setting up a richer universe that can branch off into numerous spin-offs, which include a film devoted to both Venom and the Sinister Six.

amazing spider-man 2 worth watching

So that’s one point for the movie so far. There’s something to it this time.

But is the movie any good?

Yes. In fact, I’m going to say it’s great.

I know, I know. The consensus so far among Spider-Man fanatics like myself has been that this sequel is essentially an abomination. Bob Chipman, one of my favorite movie critics, nearly quit reviewing movies out of frustration over this film.

But I politely disagree with Chipman and many other naysayers, and here’s why.

First, they finally got the costume right. I was pretty indifferent to the Sam Raimi costume version, despite its toned down color and melancholic feel. But The Amazing Spider-Man proved that you can definitely mess up his costume, with laughable blinking lights and a look that doesn’t look at all like the Spider-Man we’ve gotten to love over the better half of the last century.

amazing spider-man 2 worth watching

This time around, however, the costume is pretty much perfect, capturing the look of Spider-Man in a way that pays homage to the original without looking dated.

Next, the action scenes and special effects were fantastic, and I applaud Dave Schaub for his hard work and dedication to crafting a movie that lets Spider-Man be the web slinging daredevil he is, stealing every scene he’s in when donning the costume.

(I even wrote a piece on how Schaub and his team set out to nail the physics of web slinging in this awesome interview you can read here.)

Adding to the action was a devotion to revealing what I call little moments throughout the story. Yes, you had big themes and character plots controlling the drive of the story, but that didn’t prevent director Marc Webb from giving Spider-Man some time to just be a hero. For the first time since Spider-Man 2, audiences were allowed to see Spider-Man foil petty crimes in creative ways, without the plot keeping him too busy.

amazing spider-man 2 worth watching

These moments consisted of Spidey’s varied conversations with the citizens he would save, along with entire scenes devoted to heroic crime fighting that didn’t even contribute heavily to the plot. I think that some critics were possibly annoyed at these little moments because they might seem pointless to some, but appreciated the care put into differentiating Spider-Man from his real identity, Peter Parker.

Spider-Man is a superhero who is always cracking jokes and keeping things light because he has a mask on. Peter Parker is less confident and a little more nerdy, and that’s a theme that is far more faithful here to the comics.

And it made the film fun. I found myself laughing out loud during the film many times, and kudos to Garfield for letting himself over-act for this role, because it definitely worked.

amazing spider-man 2 worth watching

There were two main villains in this film: Max Dillon (AKA Electro) and Harry Osborn (AKA Green Goblin). My biggest complaint for this film lies in how they handled these two, both as characters and how they fit into the plot.

To be fair, I liked both of these villains early on, especially Max Dillon’s incredibly awkward transition from bumbling electrician to full-on psychopath. But as the film trudged along, we lost what made Dillon interesting as he became a ruthless villain. In other words, his character arc was a bit clumsy.

Dane DeHaan’s take on Green Goblin committed the same sins, and  I hate how they handled the origin of this villain. I spent the entire film hoping that we’d find out that Harry’s father, Norman Osborn, would end up being the “real” Goblin, using his son as a pawn, but no such twist came to fruition.

amazing spider-man 2 worth watching

The film had a lot of great moments, but it was a bit lopsided, as it would spend huge chunks focusing on one of its many story threads. They handled the progression of Gwen and Peter’s story quite well, at the very least, and I was satisfied with how the film answered the question of what happened to Peter’s parents.

Still, the pacing just felt a bit off and the film could have used some strategic trimming. It was a bit long, but I certainly didn’t look at my watch.

I’d like to talk more on how I felt about the film toward the third act, which was its strongest (at least in regards to the last 15-20 minutes). But I’ll leave you with this:

The Amazing Spider-Man 2 is worth watching. It’s a well-made film that presents a decent take on the webhead, unless you’re firmly against Sony’s new version already. My advice is to just go with the flow and let yourself be amazed by the plenty of good things this sequel has to offer.

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