Friday, June 21, 2024

“Spider Man” Opens Tonight: Julie Taymor Likely to Attend


“Spider Man: Turn off the Dark” opens tonight after beginning previews six months ago. The good news: I’m told that the show’s masterful creator, Julie Taymor, is likely to attend the premiere. She should, and she should take a big bow at curtain call. Tonight closes almost nine years worth of hard work.

Without Taymor, there would have been no “Spider Man.” And despite all the jokes–like the ones on the Tony Awards–“Spider Man” is not the worst show in Broadway history. It’s actually pretty good, has exciting special effects, great visuals, and good box office. Taymor’s vision remains intact in the reimagined show. It’s just that dialogue has been sharpened and the story is easier to follow now. The basic show is hers, and Taymor would be remiss not to try and enjoy the opening night.

If there’s bitterness at the show, it has more to do with the choreography situation. I’m told the actors did not care much for late arrival Chase Brock, who replaced accomplished veteran Daniel Ezralow. Brock, who’s never choreographed a Broadway show, has gotten low marks from the cast, crew and preview audiences for changing Ezralow’s work. After tonight though it won’t matter: “Spider Man” is finally sealed. In a perfect world, everyone involved can move on. With any luck, all debts and complaints can be resolved, and the entire episode will be over.

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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