The massive project is falling further behind schedule, it's millions of dollars in the hole, and will need a miracle to meet a looming make-or-break deadline. All we need now are a string of eminent-domain lawsuits, and Julie Taymor's wildly ambitious Broadway adaptation of Spider-Man might as well change its name to Atlantic Yards: The Musical. (Starring Harvey Fierstein as embattled developer Bruce Ratner!) Today Taymor is meeting with producers to decide whether to proceed or postpone the technically insane project, which is hemorrhaging money like Mr. Orange gushing blood in the back seat of Mr. White's car. Is it gonna be okaaay?
No way. The LA Times obtained a copy of the "confidential" script and says the show makes The Phantom of the Opera's crashing chandelier "look like a simple summer stock trick." At one point Spidey even swings over the audience, landing on the balcony! U2's Bono and the Edge wrote the score, and they're both supremely confident the show will be a Broadway smash. "The visuals and the music are amazing, and that's what will matter," says the millionaire Bono. But at this point it seems unlikely it can open by April 29th, the cut-off date for Tony Award nominations. And that's also when the musical's license from Marvel Entertainment will expire.
The financial outlook is bleak: The musical needs to raise as much as $24 million to cover its proposed budget of about $52 million, and it's expected to have sky-high weekly running costs totaling around $1 million. (More than 40 stage hands are needed just to operate the backstage rigging.) In fact, it would need to sell out every performance for years before it could even break even. Taymor had considered staging the epic in a specifically designed new building, like Cirque du Soleil does, but instead producers opted to rip up the Hilton Theater, to the tune of $6 million. So that process is pretty much stalled, along with everything else.