Deadline Hollywood dropped a bomb today on anyone eagerly anticipating Spider-Man 4. According to insider reports, Sam Raimi has officially abandoned the Spider-Man franchise. Production has been delayed over disagreements about the script for months now, and the announcement came through the grapevine earlier today that Raimi has pulled out of the project altogether. Unconvinced he could meet Sony’s summer release requirements and still produce a quality film, Raimi opted to walk away. Tobey Maguire and the previous cast exits along with Raimi.
Sony now intends to refocus their efforts on a reboot of the franchise with a whole new set of faces. Jamie Vanderbilt is the screenwriter of choice to take the superhero in a new direction. And apparently James Cameron wrote a treatment for a spider-man movie way back in 1991, and some fanboy hopefuls have their fingers crossed that Sony can entice the Avatar director to helm their favorite crime fighter’s reboot.
Now that Sam Raimi is free to explore other projects, the rumor mills are churning at full force to predict where he might turn his attention next. The World of Warcraft movies are one option. An adaptation of the Dennis Lehane (Shutter Island, Mystic River) novel Any Given Day is another option. If it were up to me, I’d say he should return to the low budget, campy fare (a la Drag Me to Hell and Evil Dead) that has proved to be his specialty.