by Scott Brown and William Keck
WARNING: ARTICLE DISCUSSES KEY PLOT POINTS
The many mysteries of ”Spider-Man” have us climbing the walls. As arach-nerds wonder how Spidey slings web goo through those rubber gloves, we spin some answers.
SUITS HIM FINE Turns out Spider-Man’s gloves are goo-permeable. ”He has a little hole in the costume,” says producer Laura Ziskin. ”It’s there. Really.” Not only that, director Sam Raimi says the outfit doesn’t interfere with the wall-grabbing hairs on his skin: ”The micro-hairs that protrude from his body are on such a microscopic scale that [they] can puncture right through.” While Tobey Maguire dons a pajama-like suit in an early scene, he’s soon swinging over Manhattan in a sleek body glove. ”Peter Parker’s so resourceful!” says Ziskin. ”But we didn’t want to show scenes of him sewing.”
TINGLE ALL THE WAY Despite appearances, Maguire’s Spidey sense doesn’t fail him in the wrestling scene. ”When you have inanimate objects like a chair coming from a very short distance, there is no way for the warning to [kick in],” says exec producer Avi Arad. Adds Ziskin: ”He’s still learning at that point.”
SPIDER HUNKY Longtime vegetarian Maguire had help bulking up for the role. ”I ate four to six meals a day under the guidance of a nutritionist,” says the star. ”Although on the seventh day of the week, I ate whatever I wanted.” And who doubled as the pre-pumped up Peter Parker? ”I can’t remember that poor guy’s name,” says Raimi. (Neither does Columbia.) ”But when Tobey first came to us, before the bodybuilding, he wasn’t all that different.”
WEB ADVERTISING The film is chockablock with product placements — including one unintended plug: Green Goblin Willem Dafoe, who once voiced ads for the broadband company Qwest, is fighting a corporate rival called…Quest. Pure coincidence, says Arad. ”Quest came from the hobby rocket company owned by Marvel. We needed a name that could be cleared without any legal problems.”