David Fincher was on the shortlist to direct 2002’s Spider-Man but couldn’t commit to the “dumb” origin story.
David Fincher might not have seemed like the most natural choice for directing a Spider-Man movie, but in 1999, he was considered for the gig – that is, until Sony heard his pitch, which ditched the traditional origin story to focus on a matured Peter Parker.
Speaking with The Guardian, David Fincher remembered precisely how he lost his shot at directing Spider-Man, which would have brought the web-slingin’ Marvel favorite into the 21st century. “They weren’t f*cking interested…And I get it. They were like: ‘Why would you want to eviscerate the origin story?’ And I was like: ‘’Cos it’s dumb?’ That origin story means a lot of things to a lot of people, but I looked at it and I was like: ‘A red and blue spider?’ There’s a lot of things I can do in my life and that’s just not one of them.”
David Fincher was actually competing with the likes of Tim Burton (gothic Peter Parker?–at least it’s better than emo…), M. Night Shyamalan (the spider was a fly the whole time?) and Michael Bay (Spidey ‘splosions!), who all would have brought their own trademarks to the Spider-Man character and story, whether good or bad…The gig would, of course, go to Sam Raimi, whose trilogy collectively grossed $2.5 billion worldwide and opened the floodgates for comic book movies – especially from Marvel. Speaking of which, David Fincher was even considered for The Amazing Spider-Man, which would end up being directed by, appropriately enough, Marc Webb. That, too, is a bit of an unexpected choice, as are a number of other projects he’s been tied to, like his discarded sequel to World War Z.
While Spider-Man continues to be a big screen fav (the most recent film, Across the Spider-Verse pulled in nearly $700 million worldwide), David Fincher is instead focused on promoting his latest film, The Killer. You can read our own Chris Bumbray’s review here.
How do you think David Fincher would have done with directing a Spider-Man movie? Would he have been a good fit or is it too far out of his wheelhouse? Give us your take below!