Tripping Through Gateways

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Spider-Man has the distinction of having been rebooted three times in the last fifteen years.  Both the Raimi Films and the Marc Webb films have good points.  Raimi’s Spider-Man 2 is a high point for super-hero themed films.  But they also never quite fully got Spider-Man as a character.  Maguire’s Peter Parker could be to goofy, while Garfield’s Peter was to moody and mopey. Sony hit some hard times, made all the… Read More

Batman Forever had some big shakeups.  Tim Burton and Michael Keaton were out.  Joel Schumacher and Val Kilmer were in.  But the real shakeup was…Warner Brothers wanted to sell more toys.  Schumacher had read Batman: Year One.  He really wanted to tell that story.  The studio was not interested.  Schumacher thought that if he gave them the movie they wanted, he might be able to persuade them on the next film to… Read More

Jack Nicholson kind of established the villains would always be played by big names.  Danny DiVito was brought in to play the Penguin.  But this was not the traditional Penguin from the comics.  Not merely a short round guy is a top hat, Burton envisioned an origin in which Oswald Cobblepot is born to an affluent family who are repulsed by his grotesque appearance. His father (played by Paul Reubens, who would… Read More

1989 saw the release of the most controversial Batman casting until Batfleck.  Michael Keaton, known almost entirely for comedies such as Mr. Mom, Johnny Dangerously and Gung Ho was cast as Batman…oh the horror and oh the wailing.  A long tradition of freaking out over casting began right here.  People were a bit more open to Jack Nicholson playing the Joker. As it turned out, Keaton was okay in the role.  His… Read More