The History of Spider-Man Films That DIDN’T Happen
Another year, another reboot of Spider-Man.
At least that’s how it feels sometimes. Before you see “Spider-Man: Homecoming” let’s looks over at the history of Marvel’s web head that didn’t get made.
6.) “Superman vs The Amazing Spider-Man”
You may recognize this comic as being the first DC and Marvel superhero crossover comic. However, did you know this could have been the first DC AND Marvel film as we think of them today? You see an ambitious producer pitched to both companies the idea of these two iconic superheroes coming together. Why didn’t it happen? Well both were busy with their own projects. Warner Bros was trying to get “Superman: The Movie” made while Marvel was getting the TV version of “The Amazing Spider-Man” off the ground. Eventually both did separately and continued on their own paths. It’s more a case of wondering where the comic book movie landscape would be now if this was the point where it started. Would Marvel and DC have kept their film universes connected? Would their dynamic as rivals be different now? Would it still have been Christopher Reeve as Superman? The world may never know.
5.) “Spider-Man vs the Hulk”
You may not be aware, but after “The Incredible Hulk” ended its run it lived on in TV movies. Oddly enough they used Hulk of all people to introduce us to the greater Marvel Universe. In “The Incredible Hulk Returns” he teamed up with Thor. Which was already strange as aside from the Hulk himself the show had a very grounded realistic feel. Then in “The Trial of the Incredible Hulk” he teams up with Daredevil. Nowadays neither is seen as a classic and they both failed as backdoor pilots to get these other shows made. Hulk really was the only character to make it outside of the comics at the time. The only other one that comes close is ” The Amazing Spider-Man” from the 70s. That show was cancelled after 2 seasons. Reportedly even after the third TV movie called “The Death of the Incredible Hulk” where SPOILERS Hulk dies bringing it all to a conclusion. Their plan is somehow the Hulk would return to life and fight with Spider-Man (reprised by the show’s Nicholas Hammond). Aside from that general concept not much is know other than he would have been wearing the famous black suit. No idea if this would have been the symbiote or just a new fashion choice. Most likely the latter. Apparently Hammond and Bill Bixby were enthused about the idea. Why didn’t it happen? Thank Lou Ferringo as he was too busy making Hercules movies in Europe at the time. Still I imagine this probably would have gone better as Spider-Man was already established and a big draw. I’m sure it would have been a very successful TV movie.
4.) Cannon’s “Spider-Man”
I briefly mentioned this in my article on the evolution of the Spider-Man costume. Because it was focused on the costume I didn’t get into details which is fine because now I can and oh boy are there details! The Cannon group was a production company started by Menahem Golan and Yoram Globus. Let’s just say they had more enthusiasm than actual talent, but their low-budget films did make profits for a while. They bought the film rights to Spider-Man thinking it would be their ticket to big-budget filmmaking. It would appear they only knew this by reputation as it’s clear they never actually read the books. The original writer said that they were under the impression Spider-Man was some sort of werewolf type creature. That may explain why for a while they had “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre” director Tobe Hooper attached to direct originally. However, by the time the teaser was created to promote the film the listed director was Joe Zito director of… nothing terribly spectacular. He stayed on the project for a long time, but eventually the budget got to be too much and Cannon’s financial troubles got the better of them. Part of the problem was what other film Cannon decided to stick most of their money into… “Superman IV: The Quest for Peace.”
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