Sam Raimi's comments on Spider-Man 4 show why the wall-crawler needs two simultaneous movie sagas

Sam Raimi has finally addressed the rumors about Spider-Man 4, and his comments make us wish the wall-crawler had two simultaneous movie sagas.

- New York, NY - 10/3/19 - "The Grudge" at New York Comic Con 2019.

-Pictured: Sam Raimi (Producer)
-Photo by: Kristina Bumphrey/StarPix
-Location: Jacob Javits Center NY
- New York, NY - 10/3/19 - "The Grudge" at New York Comic Con 2019. -Pictured: Sam Raimi (Producer) -Photo by: Kristina Bumphrey/StarPix -Location: Jacob Javits Center NY /

It's been more than sixteen years since we last saw Tobey Maguire star in his own Spider-Man movie. While the American actor recently wore the hero costume alongside Andrew Garfield and Tom Holland in Spider-Man: No Way Home, he appeared as a "guest" rather than having the protagonistic role. And now that the multiversal crossover has come and gone, it's anyone's guess if we'll ever see him portray Peter Parker again. Perhaps his story is truly done for good. Or maybe - just maybe - that won't be the case. See, fans are optimistic Sony will keep telling Toby's story right where it left off, and this time there are rumors to back those hopes up.

When Comic Book Resources asked Sam Raimi if he was working on a potential Spider-Man 4 movie as rumors indicated, the director carefully denied his involvement. He later suggested that one of the reasons his Spider-Man franchise isn't moving forward is because of the recent success of the Tom Holland movies:

"I mean, Marvel and Columbia are so successful with their current Spider-Man and the track there, and I don't know that they're going to come back to me and say (...) We could also tell that story."

Sam Raimi on Spider-Man 4 rumors

It may not appear so, but this same problem has plagued superhero movies in the past. Studios seem to be scared of developing two movie sagas of the same character simultaneously, even going as far as canceling projects to avoid that. So is there any weight to this logic?

Studios don't want two concurrent movie sagas

History seems to be repeating itself with the whole Spider-Man 4 scenario. Back in 2009, a movie titled Justice League: Mortal was planned to be released under the direction of George Miller. The epic team-up of DC heroes was set to be its own story separate from that of Christopher Nolan's Batman saga, meaning they were going to be two versions of the Cape Crusader on the big screen. While that wasn't a problem under Warner Brothers' eyes at first glance, it ultimately led to the demise of Justice League: Mortal.

The huge success of Christopher Nolan's The Dark Knight made Warner rethink their whole strategy. Did they really need two versions of the Cape Crusader fighting for viewers' attention? The answer turned out to be an underwhelming no in their eyes. As if that wasn't enough, the CW wasn't allowed to use Batman as a major figure on any of their shows either so that it wouldn't distract from Ben Affleck's portrayal of Bruce Wayne.

Even Sony's Spider-Man Universe is famous for lacking a version of the wall-crawler to fight the bad guys. Could it be so that it won't take the spotlight away from Tom Holland? And is competition between the same franchise truly that bad?

Why having two Spider-Men on the big screen could work

Currently, it appears Marvel and Sony disagree on what the next Tom Holland Spider-Man movie should be about. Marvel reportedly wants to tell a grounded and smaller story while Sony wants to make another multiversal adventure with multiple cameos and characters. So what about moving on with both ideas in two different live-action movies? The "bigger" movie could star Tom Holland (since the MCU is in its multiversal phase anyway), and the personal Spider-Man story could be helmed by Sam Raimi with Tobey Maguire in the lead.

Unfortunately, that doesn't solve the problem of having two versions of the same character fight for the viewers' attention at the same time. However, the two movies could come out in different years and both be commercial successes. Better yet, there's already a precedent for this in a different medium of entertainment.

Let's turn our attention to the video game world for a moment. Back in 2011 Batman: Arkham City was released to raving reviews from fans and critics alike. Unfortunately, Rocksteady - the developer behind the acclaimed time - title knew it would take a long time for them to make another game set within the same world. So what did Warner Brothers do? They gave WB Games Montréal the licensing rights to create another Batman game designed to fill the gap between Arkahm City and Arkham Knight. It's the same strategy that Nintendo uses with The Legend of Zelda all the time to keep interest in the franchise alive.

Did players mind that the same character was handled by two different studios with two different visions for it? Not at all. If anything, we were happy to get more Batman content. And even when WB Games Montréal's title wasn't as acclaimed as its predecessors, all the lukewarm reception did was make audiences excited for Rocksteady's next Arkham game. It was a win-win scenario either way.

Look no further than Insomniac's Spider-Man saga as well. Do players mind if there was a Miles Morales game released in the same time window of time as a Peter Parker game? Not in the slightest, even when both characters are Spider-Man. So why wouldn't the same reasoning apply to big-screen adaptations? After all, the Spider-Verse movies didn't distract from Tom Holland's arachnid trilogy. So why would Tobey Maguire's Spider-Man 4 do it?

Come on, Marvel and Sony. You know this is the right way to go.

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