As Spider-Man 3 begins its march toward box-office domination, Sam Raimi might be heading in another direction. According to Entertainment Weekly, Raimi is very interested in helming The Hobbit, the Lord of the Rings prequel, now that Peter Jackson's feud with New Line has left the project without a director.
That could mean an uncertain fate for Spider-Man 4. Tobey Maguire has already said that he might not return for another sequel. Now Kirsten Dunst says she's unlikely to rejoin the cast if Raimi leaves, and she suggests that Sony would be foolish to continue the franchise in that case:
''It's disrespectful to the whole team, I think, to do that. And audiences aren't stupid. It'd be a big flop without me, Tobey, or Sam. That would really not be the smartest move."
Personally, I think I'd rather see The Hobbit than another Spider-Man movie. While I think it's tragic that Jackson isn't involved in the LOTR prequel, Raimi would be a good alternative. But that's not the end of the Spider-Man news, so
According to E! Online, there's also a Spider-Man Broadway musical in the works with plenty of big-name involvement: U2's Bono and the Edge have been hired to write the score, and Tony Award-winning Julie Taymor will direct. But if you think this version will resemble the Marvel movie interpretation, think again. According to E!:
... the character of Arachne, née Spider-Woman, doesn't get her powers from a botched science experiment as in the comic books, but rather will be depicted in the musical as "a beautiful, boastful young woman turned into a spider for her hubris and lack of respect for the gods."
The character, whom the casting directors envision as "a Sinéad O'Connor type" will appear before Peter Parker in, among many incarnations, "a powerful spider-woman who comes from another time," "a bride," "a dark goddess of vengeance," "a fragile woman" and "a dance partner in...a violent spider's dance of death."
Maybe if Kirsten Dunst passes on Spidey 4 she can try her hand at playing the dark goddess of vengeance.