With the fourth installment of Spider-Man slated for production in early 2010, Sony Pictures has shown a solid commitment to expanding the franchise even more by signing screenwriter James Vanderbilt (The Losers, Zodiac) to write the Spider-Man 5 and Spider-Man 6 sequels
Vanderbilt was the first writer on Spider-Man 4, but director Sam Raimi brought on David Lindsay-Abaire (Rabbit Hole) to rewrite him, and Gary Ross is currently rewriting that script. According to Variety, Raimi didn’t embrace all of Vanderbilt’s ideas, but execs at Columbia Pictures and Marvel Studios have. The fifth and sixth Spider-Man movies will have an interconnected storyline, which was originally discussed when Vanderbilt was signed on to write Spider-Man 4, but the idea of shooting a fourth and fifth film back to back with the original cast was scrapped.
Currently, it is unclear whether Raimi, Tobey Maguire or Kirsten Dunst will be back for future installments. If they aren’t, Vanderbilt’s script would most-likely be the blueprint for a franchise reboot with an all-new cast. Regardless of the established talent’s future involvement, Sony’s priority will be to release Spider-Man films on a more frequent basis. The lapse between films has grown with each installment. The second film came only two years after the first, but it took three years for a third installment, and four years will have passed when Spider-Man 4 opens in May 2011.
Stay tuned to The Flickcast for future developments on the Spider-Man franchise.