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SPIDER-MAN 3 Producer Grant Curtis

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Exclusive Interview: PRODUCER GRANT CURTIS & WHY SYMBIOTES DON'T HAVE A FASHION SENSE IN 'SPIDER-MAN 3' - PART 3

Plus teases about the possibility of a SPIDER-MAN 3.1 DVD


Published 6/11/2007

Why are there so many editions and extended cuts of movies released on DVD today? Right before the release of the blockbuster SPIDER-MAN 3, Sony put out a special edition SPIDER-MAN 2.1 DVD including scenes cut from the original film. Grant Curtis served as co-producer on the first two SPIDER-MAN movies, and as a full producer on the third film, and was heavily involved in the fashioning of the SPIDER-MAN 2.1 DVD. He also wrote THE SPIDER-MAN CHRONICLES: THE ART AND MAKING OF SPIDER-MAN 3. In part three of this exclusive interview, iF MAGAZINE found out more rare behind the scenes info of the Spider-man universe, answers about a SPIDER-MAN 3 extended cut, and why a symbiote doesn’t have a fashion sense.
 
iF MAGAZINE: One thing I was surprised about when I read your book was how early on people like Tobey Maguire and Kirsten Dunst were involved in readings and meetings about their characters. That’s not usual is it?
 
GRANT CURTIS: When you read the quotes from the actors about the way that Sam [Raimi] directs, he really gets in there with the actor and explores that character; what’s their past? He works on the back-story and if there isn’t a back-story they work on it and collaborate and that’s the character you see on screen. One thing that we’ve always done in the movie, that’s covered in the book’s casting chapter, is you hire the best person for the role and that’s not necessarily the person you look at the comic book page and try to translate who looks like that and is a good actor working today or who is the flavor of the month. That’s not how you approach it because you have to have the best actor possible, because that’s how Sam directs. Tobey and Kirsten dug in on SPIDER-MAN 3 as they did on 1 & 2, Thomas [Hayden Church], Topher [Grace], and Bryce [Dallas Howard] did as well. That’s one of the best things about our actors is they never approached it as a comic book movie, and they never treated this script or this project as a second rate project because it was comic book material. They actually saw it the other way around; they saw the value of these projects. These are not just genre movies anymore, they’re movies that have been and will continue to be made because the characters that Stan Lee and Steve Ditko over forty years ago are such great characters and the stories are so great. Our actors, cast, and crew have understood that, and always looked at each film as an exploration of character.

 
iF: So the new actors brought the same level of dedication to this third film as the veterans of the other two movies?.

CURITS: There’s that great picture of Topher in the book working with the puppeteers and the Venom puppet on set. Then there was the portion about Sam working with Thomas on the performance of what will be a CG character, but no one knows the characters better than Sam or Thomas; so it’s always his emotions that Sam wants to come through in the ‘birth of the sandman’ sequence. We could turn the footage that they shot over to the animators and then you could have Flint Marko or Sandman playing that character at that moment even though it’s a megabyte. Actors really respond to that in terms of wanting to help shape that character.
 
iF: I noticed all of the different costume test shots in the book, how close did we get to having the black costume with the big chest-sized spider?

CURITS: For black suited Spider-man it came down to looking at all of the iconic black suited Spidey images and how beautiful and striking they were, but the more we were discussing them and the more we put up options Sam thought this was already an interesting progression for a character. It starts as an alien symbiote that crashes down to Earth, makes it’s way to Peter Parker and eventually becomes the new suit. That right there is enough to have the audience go on a journey with you; to eventually form that character. But, to also say that the symbiote has a fashion sense; is another jump that you would have to take as well. It was a jump that story-wise we just decided that the symbiote would engulf the current suit and there would be subtle changes to the suit. It really came down to not being a symbiote with a fashion sense; it is there to control Peter Parker and his actions and his thoughts.
 
iF: The symbiote did however change when it bonded to Eddie Brock, it looked more twisted and evil. Then it looked more like the traditional black suit.
 
CURITS: Just as Eddie, as a person, is twisted and mangled, so is the suit. The suit is basically a reflection of his own damaged personality. If you look at the design of the Venom costume, it really is the same suit. It’s the Spider-man suit, but twisted and mangled in its own right. If you look at it and really study it, James Acheson our costume designer is a genius because he looks at what the character is going through and dials that into the design and look of the suit.
 
iF: You had a lot to do with the special edition SPIDER-MAN 2.1 DVD. How long is it before we might see a SPIDER-MAN 3.1 DVD? 
 
CURITS: Good question! I don’t know. I don’t know if there will be one, or if there won’t be one. I’m just talking, not out of any kind of insider knowledge, but I guess if the market calls for one we’ll see if 3.1 emerges.
 
iF: In the book I saw some scenes where Sandman’s daughter was building a sand castle, and there was a scene with Eddie and the Sandman meeting. Where do those fall in the course of things?
 
CURITS: The book was a day to day journal, so there are scenes that inevitably you realize the story doesn’t support or there isn’t room for and no matter how much you like the scene as a stand alone; the movie has to have a flow and rhythm. It’s a lot like any movie, there are always scenes and moments that are shot that don’t make it in there.
 
It’s very much like the SPIDER-MAN 2.1 where you see J. Jonah Jameson jumping around in the Spider-man suit in his office and onto his desk. As a stand-alone scene it was great and we loved it, and we still love it. But, when you look at it in terms of the flow of SPIDER-MAN 2, it kind of didn’t jive and mesh with what was around it, so we had to live without it theatrically. Then in 2.1 we were able to bring that back. It happens on every movie; there are things that you really liked in script form that end up on the cutting room floor.
 
CHECK BACK LATER FOR PART 4 OF THIS EXLCUSIVE INTERVIEW RIGHT HERE AT iF MAGAZINE
 

Reader Comments

KEVIN LEWIS from WARRENSBURG MO sez....

HOW DO I GET A COPY OF THIS ORIGINAL. KEVINLEWIS1991@YAHOO.COM

6/21/2007 12:37:59 PM
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