Comic-Con 2013: ‘The Amazing Spider-Man 2′ Panel
‘The Amazing Spider-Man 2,’ the sequel to director Marc Webb‘s first installment in the rebooted Spider-Man film series, has been busy at work filming in the Big Apple. Now, during Comic-Con 2013, Columbia Pictures and Sony brought out stars Andrew Garfield (Spider-Man, Peter Parker), Jamie Foxx (Electro, Max Dillon) and Dane DeHaan (Harry Osborn), producers Avi Arad and Matt Tolmach, and Webb himself for their panel presentation on Friday, Jul. 19 in Hall H.
A faint humming grows until the black curtains part around the main stage’s screen, revealing two more adjoining screens on either side. Soon spider webs are shooting every which way, ending with the reveal of the ‘Amazing Spider-Man 2’ logo, which makes the crowd go wild.
Webb, Arad, Tolmach and DeHaan emerged shortly after, but as for Garfield and Foxx, they made more of a hoorah. Emma Stone (who was too busy shooting a film in France to attend the convention) sent along a video message, which was disrupted by an electric blue streak across the screen. Then amidst a black background we hear Jamie Foxx’s deep, sinister voice of Electro singing, “The itsy-bitsy spider … down came Electro and washed the spider out!”
Garfield was more of a spectacle, coming out on stage in full-on Spider-Man attire and answering questions as the superhero.
“You don’t have to color inside the lines” while playing the villain, said Foxx. When he first got the news that he’d be playing Electro, his daughter was having a Spider-Man-themed party. “Spider-Man’s gonna kick your ass,” she said.
Before Max Dillon is transformed into Electro, he feels forgotten by the world; his father left him when he was a kid, his mother is overprotective and doubts his abilities. Foxx said that in the comics — though it’s not shown in the movie — he was even married at one point. According to the actor, it was important to “have him be portrayed by three things: love, his family and his work.”
When you see Max, he continues, it’s his birthday and even his mother forgets about it. Upon transforming into the electricity-wielding villain, you understand his venom and anger more. “He wants to burn the city down and burn Spider-Man along with it,” said Foxx.
As part of the panel, Sony then unveiled the first ‘Amazing Spider-Man 2′ trailer, though it understandably featured a couple of storyboards in place of actual footage, due to the fact that production had only wrapped a couple weeks prior. But what was shown was a true spectacle:
It opens with Spider-Man hopping from police car to police car in hot pursuit of Paul Giamatti’s Rhino, who, as Webb tells later on in the fan Q&A, was only used to establish a fun tone for the film; he’s not the main villain. From there we meet Dillon, who is tired of being forgotten by everyone. While the comics use the “struck by lightning” method to imagine his origin story, ‘The Amazing Spider-Man 2′ has him working an electrician job, presumably in Oscorp, and then falling into a tank of electric eels. Following more action sequences of Spidey saving pedestrians from flying cars, the newly transformed Electro stumbling through crowds of New Yorkers, and Emma Stone’s Gwen Stacey staring off in the distance dramatically, the trailer ends with the villain floating above Time Square and blasting it with thick streaks of electricity.
Coming off all the adrenaline in the crowd after watching this footage, fans took to the mic for a Q&A with the stars, one of them bringing up the web slinger’s sexuality. Recently Andrew Garfield made statements to EW suggesting Spider-Man could be gay and suggesting that he have a biracial, bisexual relationship with Michael B. Jordan down the road.
“Spider-Man stands for everyone,” clarified Garfield at the panel. “I think it would illogical and it wouldn’t make sense suddenly in the third movie if I was with a black guy. … To me it’s not a social issue. Love is love … He’s covered from head to toe. He’s a hero, and that’s what’s important. He stands for the underdog and for those who need protecting.”
In terms of other characters in the film, Dane DeHaan’s Harry Osborn’s relationship with Peter is somewhat different than in the Sam Raimi films. As the actor said, “Harry and Peter are childhood friends, and then Harry gets sent off to boarding school and he cuts off everything that had to do with his life, mostly the complicated relationship with his father.” After returning from school, he then has to reconcile his relationship with Peter. Though, as the trailer teased, he seems to have a more malicious side to him than you might think.
“You’ve never really seen him have a true friendship,” said Webb. “To see that color of Peter Parker was an interesting thing to do.”
“The main villain in this movie is Electro,” said Webb, who describes him as a god. “Electro is an incredibly powerful villain and sustains the breath and depth of the film.” He did reveal that, as in the comics, if you touch him, the electricity will devastate you. “How do you fight someone who can touch a socket and merge with electricity? It’s a terrifying possibility.”
As far as the future of ‘Spider-Man’ goes, the third and fourth installments of the Webb-directed series already have premiere dates, but Garfield made a suggestion that everyone in the audience wanted to hear:
“I’d love to see [Spider-Man] with the Avengers. I’m just saying … it’d be pretty cool.”
‘The Amazing Spider-Man 2′ is set to hit theaters on May 2, 2014. ‘The Amazing Spider-Man 3′ and ‘The Amazing Spider-Man 4′ will be released June 10, 2016 and May 4, 2018, respectively.