Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Why I Think Marvel Should Not Recast Spider-Man

This is what I found when I woke up and went to see IMDb this morning.

And right away, my reaction was roughly this - almost the same reaction I had upon reading the end of The Evolution of Mara Dyer:

It's a Community of Guardians echoing my sentiments.

Now, don't get me wrong - I'm all for Ol' Webhead getting the screentime he deserves. In a world where Fifty Shades can be made into a feature film, we need proof that the art of cinema is not dead. And in a world where we may have otherwise been sentenced to a four-year gap between TASM 2 and 3, it's a welcome sight, knowing that Marvel now intends to present the movie we're all waiting for a year earlier - and just in time for my birthday too. The last time Marvel released a movie on my birthday weekend, it was pure, unadulterated, amazeballs, awesome fun.

You said it, Rocket.
And I'm sure the new Marvel-Sony collaboration will be a cool one too. There's just one little problem - the star of the most recent reboot won't be in it.

That, unfortunately, is what we seem to be looking at - a Spider-Man movie without Andrew Garfield.

Now, one of my best friends is a huge fan of the original Sam Raimi trilogy, the ones with Tobey Maguire as Spidey. She grew up with those movies - as did I - but she was much more profoundly affected by them than I was. She was very much dazzled by what she saw in Raimi's cool, stylish vision. And it helped that she had a crush on Tobey Maguire (still does, in fact). But she doesn't want to watch The Amazing Spider-Man, because she's afraid that by doing so, it'll interfere with her happy, nostalgic childhood memories.

This is just about how I feel, knowing that the next Spider-Man movie will be something different from the ones I fell in love with. For Raimi's trilogy, I thought of it this way: the first one was cheesy awesome.

Remixed 12 years later by Electro.
The second one, genuinely good. 

Erm...not quite.
The third...meh. It wasn't all-out bad like the world seems to think it is, but still, some of the creative directions were pretty misguided, to say the least.

Tobey Maguire's Peter Parker, flipping that emo hair since 2007.
Both Amazing Spider-Man movies, on the other hand, were my kind of movies. They struck the perfect balance between high action...

Send that Rhino back to the zoo!
...and high romance...

Facepalming with flowers.
One day, I'll be doing that for reals.
...and, of course, high humor.

"You know, you...got the mind...of a true scholar, sir.
See, see, I was goin' more for the guys who do the luge..."
(There's a reason why I've memorized that entire scene, people.) :)

That's the balance I try to reach in my own stories, because I know I'm not the only one who finds the greatest entertainment that way. And that's the reason why, if and when I publish Red Rain, there's gonna be a big long paragraph in the Acknowledgments (you should see me type that word one painful letter at a time, just trying to make sure I get it right) section offering a massive shout-out and thank you to all those who made The Amazing Spider-Man movies possible - especially the second one, because I saw it in theaters when I was first writing Red Rain and immediately sought to put in as many references to it as possible. The Amazing Spider-Man series is my perfect kind of movie, and the biggest influence on my writing by far.

And you know why it works so well for me? Because everyone involved has amazing talent for an amazing movie. Especially the cast - they all delivered excellent performances. Especially-especially Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone - the fact that they got together off-screen as well as on, that speaks volumes about their chemistry right there.

You know how the saying goes - "if it ain't broke, don't fix it." Well, Sony and Marvel, contrary to what the general public seemed to think if the internet was anything to go by, nothing was "broke" about The Amazing Spider-Man. It was perfectly fine the way it was. Think about it - if the movie truly was as bad as the internet said, would an entire theater full of people, myself and my friend included, break out in applause for it when it ended? Would I be provided a reason to paraphrase Quentin Tarantino re: The Lone Ranger and think, "Wait, this is the movie everyone says is crap? Seriously?"

Long story short - Marvel, I trust you will do Spider-Man justice in the new movie. But for God's sake, don't change the cast. I know I'm not the only one who would be supremely unhappy if you did.

Remember: Denis Leary is always watching. Always.


  1. What?! Andrew Garfield cannot be replaced. I hate Hollywood.

    1. Tell me about it. Of course, I'll see the reboot no matter what (maybe not in theaters like I did for both Amazing Spider-Man movies, though.) But without Andrew Garfield, I don't think it'll be anywhere near the same. (Well, there are a few actors I think could pull it off, but since I seem to have the worst luck in the world, I'm not sure any of them could land the role.)