If you listened to this week’s podcast, you heard about the long and winding road from from the 1970s CBS Spider-Man to the release of Sam Rami’s Spider-Man in 2002. Below I share some morsels I’ve dug up online!
First, there are the magazine ads, all of them presumably from Variety, announcing that Spider-Man was coming back to the big screen in the mid-1980s! These are from when the property was at Cannon and later 21st Century under the guidance of Menahem Golan. All photos are borrowed from a great blog post from VideoJunkie.org from 2010.
Over the years, there were more than a half dozen writers who tackled the script. Some constructed new stories, others just polished up dialogue and some simply failed miserably at attempting to capture the essence of the character. Here is a copy of Ted Newsom and John Brancato’s script from 1985 which served as completely new beginning after the initial script by Leslie Stevens miscast Spider-Man as more of a monster than anything else. The Newsom and Brancato script was inspired by a treatment written by Stan Lee himself!
Between 1985 and 1988, more writers were brought in to tweak the story. You can take a look at the article which touches on the proposed story and credits Don Michael Paul as the screenwriter? A few short weeks later, they’d credit Ethan Wiley. A year after that, the writers were listed as Neil Ruttenberg and Joseph Goldman…
The project would later fall into the hands of James Cameron! Having recently learned this whole history, I now understand the whole Entourage/Aquaman storyline. Not that anything on Entourage was ever that thought provoking (and not that it needed to be!), I just never put two and two together that Cameron was notoriously linked to the production of a superhero film after Terminator and before Titanic!
You can read James Cameron’s “scriptment” here! Or you can check out this project in which artist Daniele Tomasi creates storyboards based on the script! It’s a beautiful visual and incredibly well done! Click the image to go to the page to read it in it’s entirety!