HomeMovie NewsEl Sol de México and Spiderman’s battle for the big screen

El Sol de México and Spiderman’s battle for the big screen

Behind the scenes, has had more hits than flops, so it deserves a movie of its own. Some of the chapters of what happened before had his own movie include lawsuits, bankruptcies, and a movie everyone dreamed of but didn’t happen. For the first attempts to bring the character to the big screen, you have to go back to the 1970s.

Despite less than two decades of existence, Spider-Man was already the most popular character, which interested both the publisher and producers in taking him to the big screen. In the middle of the decade, the idea of making a Superman film arose, not alone, but in collaboration with Superman.

As . began making Superman the movie, CBS acquired the rights to make a series based on the arachnid, and the plans fell apart. It was the result of this failed project that Superman the movie was a success, with three sequels, and Spider-Man

The series lasted only one 14-episode season, but its first few episodes were edited into a movie that was released outside the U.S. The idea of bringing together the two heroes of the time never failed, but a comic book came into being in 1978.

The Legal Web

The Cannon Group (producer of American ninja and the anonymous avenger) obtained the rights after the first failed attempt in the 1980s but failed to lift the project. Those were the years when adapting comics to film was considered a bad idea.

In 1980, Superman had a great sequel, but the third and fourth parts were a failure with critics and the public alike. During that era, Marvel did not exist as a film production company, and Howard the duck was the only thing that is remembered from that decade, but as an anecdote rather than a good thing.

In short, comics weren’t suited to Hollywood projects. As DC Comics owner Warner Bros. released Batman with and in 1989, that would change. It was a box office success, praised by fans, and even earned an Oscar nomination, proving that a comic book could be quite productive for Hollywood with enough manpower and resources.

This revived the interest of studios in Spider-Man. Carolco obtained the rights for the big screen in 1990, and trying to imitate Warner’s success with Batman, they contacted director . Cameron had just finished filming true lies and already had Aliens Y The Terminator on his resume.

The project was accepted by the director, much to Carolco’s delight. Cameron committed to the project and presented a script and Leonardo DiCaprio as Peter Parker in the first version of the story. However, the other side of the coin was a disaster. Despite having franchises like Rambo and Terminator, Carolco’s finances were in the red.

During that time, press reports revealed that the production company spent more than it earned, mainly because it mortgaged its share of the box office and exceeded actors’ salaries. For instance, Sylvester Stallone was paid $17 million for the third part of Rambo.

One of the worst economic disasters of all time was the 1995 adventure film Cutthroat Island (titled The Pirate in Mexico), starring Geena Davis and Matthew Modine sentenced the end to the production company. Despite a $115 million budget (high even today), the movie only grossed $10 million.

As a result, the studio closed that year, and Spider-Man’s rights were contested in court. Carolco’s productions, including Spider-Man, were originally purchased by MGM, or so they thought. The lawsuit was filed by Carolco against other smaller production companies that also contributed money and claimed ownership of the rights.

There were other factors that complicated the matter. Firstly, by 1995, James Cameron had already signed an exclusive contract with 20th Century Fox (for whom he would film Titanica with Leonardo DiCaprio as the protagonist), for which he demanded to be paid for his script. A contract from 1990, however, had an expiration date of 1996.

It was unfortunate for MGM that Marvel was on the verge of bankruptcy that year, and it sold its film rights to save itself. In the end, the comics company was able to recover the rights, and soon after they put them up for sale.

Related: The Amazing Spider-Man 3 Fan Poster Brings Back Venom, Black Cat, and Mary Jane

He finally found a buyer in 1998: Columbia Pictures, which paid Marvel $10 million and a tiny percentage of the box office for Spider-Man’s rights. Among the rights acquired was the script by James Cameron. Clearly, Marvel had the right to exploit the character in other media (TV, comics, video games), but Columbia owned the film rights. Do we have a happy ending?

The Sony-Disney Marriage

Sony’s Columbia bet, owned by Columbia, was ideal in principle. A Spider-Man movie starring Tobey Maguire, Kirsten Dunst, Willen Dafoe, James Franco, and JK Simmons was released in 2002. It was a box office and fan favorite, and it even had one of the first viral videos on the internet. The teaser shows robbers trying to escape in a helicopter, but they are stopped by a spider web hanging from the twin towers.

Despite its cancellation, many people saw it on YouTube after the September 11 attacks. The first saga of the wall-crawler was directed by Sam Raimi, who with Spiderman 2 produced what is considered to be the best film adaptation of the character. There were some signs that 2007 would be the year of the arachnid’s consecration on the big screen, but…

Since its announcement, it has been known that it will adopt one of the most important comics stories: the origin story of Venom, a popular character. Its box office result was disappointing, and despite its success, there was a sense of failure left behind.

In principle, Raimi and the study agreed to make a fourth film, but the poor reception of the third part led to “creative differences” and the project was canceled. Therein lies the first problem of the 1998 deal. There was an agreement in the fine print that Columbia would release Spider-Man movies periodically, otherwise, the rights would revert to Marvel, which was finding its winning formula by then.

Sony aims to keep Columbia’s rights as well as exploit them to the fullest extent possible. Under the direction of director Marc Weeb in 2012, he rebooted Peter Parker and co. with Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone in the main roles, and began developing projects with other characters from the saga.

In parallel, Disney, which had by then bought Marvel, already had the biggest franchise in Hollywood, the Marvel Cinematic Universe (UCM). The Amazing Spiderman only lasts two films after its lukewarm box office reception.

It was a huge pressure for Sony by then because a sector of the fans believed it was unable to make a good Spider-Man movie since most of them had forgotten the trilogy of a decade ago. In addition, Disney wanted to recover Marvel’s crown jewel to include in his collection.

Finally, the parties came up with a solution: work together. As a concession, Sony would give up creative control of Spider-Man movies in exchange for Disney allowing it to use Disney characters in its films. Civil War (2016) saw Tom Holland’s Spiderman appear alongside Iron Man and company, demonstrating the success.

The next few years were hunky-dory for Holland, who starred in a pair of solo movies and appeared in Avengers: Infinity War Y. Peter Parker’s spider-sense couldn’t prevent what was to come, however.

With pleasant surprise, cinemas all over the world received Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, a Columbia project. Both audiences and critics praised its refreshing story and high-quality animation, winning the Academy Award for Best Animated Feature.

With this project, Columbia showed the world that not everything is the MCU, which gave it confidence in its ability to do good wall-crawling projects. It was followed a year later by Spider-Man: Far from Home, released under the Disney-Sony partnership. It was a burning world.

As soon as it was publicly revealed that the two companies were not renewing their agreement, it had a negative impact on the public. Disney allegedly acted arrogantly, Sony was unappreciative of its support, and even Mickey Mouse’s house considered purchasing the Japanese giant to restore Spider-Man’s franchise.

Due to this, both parties were forced to return to the negotiating table to finally reach an agreement: Holland must finish his trilogy as Spider-Man, and then we will see what happens.

The film premiered this way last December, becoming the first to break the million-dollar box office barrier after the pandemic, and the only one to compete with Spider-Man 2 for the title of the best film in the series.

Next steps?

In the aftermath of no way home, the future of the wall-crawler is unclear. Despite Sony’s insistence on spin-offs, Morbius has failed, Venom continues with potential, and there’s a Madam Web tape that isn’t well known. Spider-Man did not receive any announcements from Marvel at Comic-Con 2022.

A continuation of Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse is confirmed for next year. In regards to Peter Parker, there is still no concrete information. In public, Raimi has stated that he would like to direct the fourth film in the series, and Sony, which is still studying ways to capitalize on one of the biggest characters of all time, is not indifferent to the idea.

Robert Poirrer is a contributing author who covers Hollywood latest movie releases and web series for the MovieThop website. He has a decade of experience in writing movies based articles for numerous renowned media outlets. He is excellent at creating unique content based on emerging trends in a variety of categories especially entertainment, movies and lifestyle. When not writing articles you could find Robert enjoying mountain biking trips with his friends. He graduated in English Literature from North Carolina State University.