“Not even Spider Man could avert this disaster,” was the opening line of the New York post review for Broadway’s newest superhero venture, entitled Spider Man: Turn Out the Dark. Directed by Broadway’s The Lion King‘s Julie Taymor (who also directed the recent film release The Tempest, starring Helen Mirren) and scored by none other than rock legend, Bono, the $65 million production was headed for the skies–pardon the pun.
But when the first preview opened October 28th, last Sunday night, things took a turn for the worse. Rife with technical problems, falling wires, dangling actors, missing set pieces (and on one occasion, even missing stars), much of the audience was less than pleased with their experience. Said patron Steve Poizner of California in reference to an incident leaving the malicious Green Goblin (played by Patrick Page) to improvise on the piano for several minutes while stage hands took the stage, “This is the best part of the whole show.”
The production, which ended up taking three and a half hours to complete, stopped four times in the act alone, with The New York Times saying the show “got snarled at time in its own technically ambitious web.”
“I don’t know about the rest of you,” said another angry theatergoer from her seat in the house, “but I feel like a guinea pig tonight!”
While Spider Man is still well within its preview runs, with the official (and final) opening date slated for January 11th, the production has already been delayed several weeks due to safety problems, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
Producer Michael Cohl has told Entertainment Weekly that he was “ecstatic” about the show’s first run; however, the general manager at the Foxwoods Theater, where the production is currently staged, has already started alerting other producers to the possibility of open space in the near future.