Sony to Release Spider-Man 4 in 2010?

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Will the original squad be back, or will Sony recruit new talent? A week ago we reported on the rumor that Spider-Man 4 and Spider-Man 5 will be filmed back-to-back, Back to the Future styles. Today, a quote from Marvel’s Vice Chairman, Peter Cuneo, hit the Net via IESB regarding Sony‘s stirring plans for a third sequel…

“As far as Spider-man 4, it’s really up to Sony, it’s up to them, most likely scenario is 2010 or 2011 but we can’t speak for them and I think, that we don’t know. They have given us their re-up payment for that film so you know they’re going to make it within a reasonable time frame. Sony may be looking at some issues with the cast and so on, I think they have to make some decisions.”

Maybe it’s me, but all of these recent quotes from Marvel honchos have a newfound tone of “We’re kicking ass and taking names, and, of course, we have outside properties as well. No big deal.” So, screenwriter James Vanderbilt (Zodiac) has apparently turned in a script for Spidey 4 that inherently ties to a fifth film; if this is how the franchise plays out, I’d imagine (rather predictably, yes) that an unprecedented bag of cash the size of a Dubai island would need to be exchanged to bring back Sam Raimi, Tobey Maguire and Kirsten Dunst. And if I had to place a blind bet, I’d say a new A-list director (and, if so, probably a new star) is in store to bring Peter Parker into the next decade. Dunst is the cigarettes to the keys and wallet, here. What does your Magic 8ball tell you?

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Today, a scoop is circulating via Cinematical that possibly spells the fate of the lucrative Spider-Man franchise. It was already known that screenwriter James Vanderbilt (Zodiac, The Rundown) was working on the script for Spider-Man 4, but apparently he’s turned in a draft to Sony/Columbia that allows a Spider-Man 5 to be shot simultaneously. According to the “super delegate Hollywood insider” tipster…

“[Vanderbilt's] story arc has encompassed two films, making Spider-Man 5 shootable at the same time. The studio saw dollar signs and is in the process of reworking his deal to snatch up the story arc.”

Not much else was dished at this time, but if true, this is obviously a major development for the series. Would Tobey Maguire, Kirsten Dunst and Sam Raimi be up to shooting two Spidey flicks back to back? Only their bank accounts can probably answer that one, but in the meantime, what do you think the future holds as far as talent and continuation with the prior three flicks? More on this as it develops…

Discuss: After the busy and dizzying kitchen sink that was Spider-Man 3, is a juggling act with Spider-Man 4 and 5 the way to go? 

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