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“The Amazing Spider-Man” sneak peek reveals more details about webslinger’s return to the big screen

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Your friendly neighborhood wall-crawler returns to theaters this year, and a worldwide event held earlier today that revealed new footage from “The Amazing Spider-Man” served as a great reminder that Peter Parker will be giving The Avengers and Batman some competition at the box office.

Held simultaneously in 15 cities across the world, the “Amazing Spider-Man” preview event featured appearances by director Marc Webb and producer Avi Arad, as well as cast members Emma Stone, Rhys Ifans, and Peter Parker himself, Andrew Garfield. And while the short Q&A with the guests of honor didn’t offer much in the way of new details about the film, the event also played host to not one but two collections of footage: a 3D presentation of the brand new trailer for “The Amazing Spider-Man” that debuts tonight, as well as a short “sizzle reel” featuring selected scenes from the film, both finished and unfinished.

Here’s a brief recap of what was shown in both pieces of footage:

First, it’s worth noting that the new trailer for “The Amazing Spider-Man” offered a great indication of how 3D filming will play into the visual element of the film. Rather than seeming gimmicky or yet another victim of 3D post-conversion, the the visuals in the trailer appeared sharp and higher definition than standard 2D films — which is the way 3D films have found the most success. Later in the event, Webb commented on this fact, reminding the audience that much of “The Amazing Spider-Man” was filmed in 3D rather than converted after the fact.

As for the trailer itself, we get to see some great scenes of Peter Parker (both as Spider-Man and out of costume) swinging around New York City and interacting with Gwen Stacy (Emma Stone), as well as some shots of Peter in a makeshift laboratory of sorts, working on his web shooters. This was one of the major reveals of the trailer, with very clear confirmation that Spider-Man will be using mechanical web-shooters of his own design. The shooters feature a glowing, red, circular symbol in their center, and appear to “charge up” as he delivers webbing.

During the trailer, we see Peter working on the web-shooters in his lab, and there are a number of shots in which the red glow of the shooters is visible during action scenes. Near the end of the trailer, there’s a close-up shot of the shooters being “charged” before Spider-Man swings into view.

The trailer also offers quite a few scenes of Peter interacting with Gwen and her family, which includes her police officer father, George Stacy (Denis Leary). The footage emphasized that Spider-Man won’t be seen as a hero at first, with Peter seen arguing with Gwen’s father about Spidey’s motives over dinner, and later brawling with a group of police attempting to subdue him. (He’s also missing his mask during this scene — something that adds an interesting wrinkle to the story.)

While the up-close look at the web-shooters was a big moment, the reveal of several scenes featuring Spidey’s nemesis were also big crowd-pleasers. Dr. Curt Conners was seen in both his human form (as played by Rhys Ifans) and his reptilian alter ego, The Lizard, though more was shown of the former than the latter. Peter and Dr. Connors clearly share some connections that go beyond mentor and student in the film, and the additional footage revealed later at the event confirmed that Connors and Peter’s father were professional colleagues in the past.

At one point in the trailer, we see Dr. Connors inject himself with what can only be the serum that changes him into The Lizard, and we’re treated to a barrage of brief images showing The Lizard rampaging through the city. There are several shots of The Lizard crawling through the sewers and ripping a hole in a car, the floor, and several other set pieces, and near the end of the preview, there’s a nice shot of Spider-Man and The Lizard duking it out high in the sky.

Before the next reel of footage was shown, several of the cast members answered some prepared questions. Asked about the “Untold Story” tagline the movie is sporting, Webb said the film will focus on several elements of Peter Parker’s origin story that haven’t been explored on the big screen so far — including “the emotional consequence of being an orphan.”

The second reel featured some unfinished footage, but also a few great work-in-progress action sequences and a nice scene with Andrew Garfield, Emma Stone, and Martin Sheen, who plays Peter’s uncle in the film. Not only did the scene offer a great look at the relationship between Peter and Gwen (which seems to have great chemistry), but it also offered an indication of how Sheen will be playing Uncle Ben in the film — which is very much a modern take on the character and his relationship with Peter. At the risk of spoiling a key plot element, the scene might also foreshadow one of Peter’s darkest moments, as Ben mentions that one of Peter’s decisions is forcing him change shifts at work and be somewhere he might not have been otherwise (and any Spidey fan knows how that usually works out for the people in Peter’s life).

The extra footage also included a scene that showcases one of the biggest changes in tone from the previous “Spider-Man” franchise, as we get to see Spider-Man spouting a constant stream of quips while he subdues a car thief. One thing noted by many comics-friendly critics of the original franchise is the more emo, angsty tone the series developed with each installment, and the new footage from “The Amazing Spider-Man” appears to take a far more lighthearted approach to the webslinger’s famous never-ending commentary while stopping crimes.

On that note, the new footage also showcased Spider-Man enhanced agility and web-swinging abilities, with several scenes in which Spidey dodges bullets and leaps, flips, twists, and contorts his body in mid-air to avoid projectiles. If nothing else, the new Spider-Man clearly seems to be a more limber take on the character.

“The Amazing Spider-Man” hits theaters this July, but keep an eye on IFC.com for more coverage of today’s sneak peek event, including some upcoming lists that break down some of the specific changes you’ll see in this new film as compared to the previous “Spider-Man” franchise.

What do you think of the footage described here? Chime in below or on Facebook or Twitter.

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A-O Rewind

Celebrating Portlandia One Sketch at a Time

The final season of Portlandia approaches.

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Most people measure time in minutes, hours, days, years…At IFC, we measure it in sketches. And nothing takes us way (waaaaaay) back like Portlandia sketches. Yes, there’s a Portlandia milepost from every season that changed the way we think, behave, and pickle things. In honor of Portlandia’s 8th and final season, Subaru presents a few of our favorites.

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Put A Bird On It

Portlandia enters the pop-culture lexicon and inspires us to put birds on literally everything.

Colin the Chicken

Who’s your chicken, really? Behold the emerging locavore trend captured perfectly to the nth degree.

Dream Of The ’90s

This treatise on Portland made it clear that “the dream” was alive and well.

No You Go

We Americans spend most of our lives in cars. Fortunately, there’s a Portlandia sketch for every automotive situation.

A-O River!

We learned all our outdoor survival skills from Kath and Dave.

One More Episode

The true birth of binge watching, pre-Netflix. And what you’ll do once Season 8 premieres.

Catch up on Portlandia’s best moments before the 8th season premieres January 18th on IFC.

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WTF Films

Artfully Off

Celebrity All-Star by Sisters Weekend is available now on IFC's Comedy Crib.

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Sisters Weekend isn’t like other comedy groups. It’s filmmaking collaboration between besties Angelo Balassone, Michael Fails and Kat Tadesco, self-described lace-front addicts with great legs who write, direct, design and produce video sketches and cinematic shorts that are so surreally hilarious that they defy categorization. One such short film, Celebrity All-Star, is the newest addition to IFC’s Comedy Crib. Here’s what they had to say about it in a very personal email interview…

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IFC: How would you describe Celebrity All-Star to a fancy network executive you just met in an elevator?

Celebrity All-Star is a short film about an overworked reality TV coordinator struggling to save her one night off after the cast of C-List celebrities she wrangles gets locked out of their hotel rooms.

IFC: How would you describe Celebrity All-Star to a drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?

Sisters Weekend: It’s this short we made for IFC where a talent coordinator named Karen babysits a bunch of weird c-list celebs who are stuck in a hotel bar. It’s everyone you hate from reality TV under one roof – and that roof leaks because it’s a 2-star hotel. There’s a magician, sexy cowboys, and a guy wearing a belt that sucks up his farts.

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IFC: What was the genesis of Celebrity All-Star?

Celebrity All-Star was born from our love of embarrassing celebrities. We love a good c-lister in need of a paycheck! We were really interested in the canned politeness people give off when forced to mingle with strangers. The backstory we created is that the cast of this reality show called “Celebrity All-Star” is in the middle of a mandatory round of “get to know each other” drinks in the hotel bar when the room keys stop working. Shows like Celebrity Ghost Hunters and of course The Surreal Life were of inspo, but we thought it
was funny to keep it really vague what kind of show they’re on, and just focus on everyone’s diva antics after the cameras stop rolling.

IFC: Every celebrity in Celebrity All-Star seems familiar. What real-life pop personalities did you look to for inspiration?

Sisters Weekend: Anyone who is trying to plug their branded merch that no one asked for. We love low-rent celebrity. We did, however, directly reference Kylie Jenner’s turd-raison lip color for our fictional teen celebutante Gibby Kyle (played by Mary Houlihan).

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IFC: Celebrity seems disgusting yet desirable. What’s your POV? Do you crave it, hate it, or both?

Sisters Weekend: A lot of people chase fame. If you’re practical, you’ll likely switch to chasing success and if you’re smart, you’ll hopefully switch to chasing happiness. But also, “We need money. We need hits. Hits bring money, money bring power, power bring fame, fame change the game,” Young Thug.

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IFC: Who are your comedy idols?

Sisters Weekend: Mike grew up renting “Monty Python” tapes from the library and staying up late to watch 2000’s SNL, Kat was super into Andy Kaufman and “Kids In The Hall” in high school, and Angelo was heavily influenced by “Strangers With Candy” and Anna Faris in the Scary Movie franchise, so, our comedy heroes mesh from all over. But, also we idolize a lot of the people we work with in NY-  Lorelei Ramirez, Erin Markey, Mary Houlihan, who are all in the film, Amy Zimmer, Ana Fabrega, Patti Harrison, Sam Taggart. Geniuses! All of Em!

IFC: What’s your favorite moment from the film?

Sisters Weekend: I mean…seeing Mary Houlihan scream at an insane Pomeranian on an iPad is pretty great.

See Sisters Weekend right now on IFC’s Comedy Crib

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Reality? Check.

Baroness For Life

Baroness von Sketch Show is available for immediate consumption.

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Baroness von Sketch Show is snowballing as people have taken note of its subtle and not-so-subtle skewering of everyday life. The New York Times, W Magazine, and Vogue have heaped on the praise, but IFC had a few more probing questions…

IFC: To varying degrees, your sketches are simply scripted examples of things that actually happen. What makes real life so messed up?

Aurora: Hubris, Ego and Selfish Desires and lack of empathy.

Carolyn: That we’re trapped together in the 3rd Dimension.

Jenn: 1. Other people 2. Other people’s problems 3. Probably something I did.

IFC: A lot of people I know have watched this show and realized, “Dear god, that’s me.” or “Dear god, that’s true.” Why do people have their blinders on?

Aurora: Because most people when you’re in the middle of a situation, you don’t have the perspective to step back and see yourself because you’re caught up in the moment. That’s the job of comedians is to step back and have a self-awareness about these things, not only saying “You’re doing this,” but also, “You’re not the only one doing this.” It’s a delicate balance of making people feel uncomfortable and comforting them at the same time.

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IFC: Unlike a lot of popular sketch comedy, your sketches often focus more on group dynamics vs iconic individual characters. Why do you think that is and why is it important?

Meredith: We consider the show to be more based around human dynamics, not so much characters. If anything we’re more attracted to the energy created by people interacting.

Jenn: So much of life is spent trying to work it out with other people, whether it’s at work, at home, trying to commute to work, or even on Facebook it’s pretty hard to escape the group.

IFC: Are there any comedians out there that you feel are just nailing it?

Aurora: I love Key and Peele. I know that their show is done and I’m in denial about it, but they are amazing because there were many times that I would imagine that Keegan Michael Key was in the scene while writing. If I could picture him saying it, I knew it would work. I also kind of have a crush on Jordan Peele and his performance in Big Mouth. Maya Rudolph also just makes everything amazing. Her puberty demon on Big Mouth is flawless. She did an ad for 7th generation tampons that my son, my husband and myself were singing around the house for weeks. If I could even get anything close to her career, I would be happy. I’m also back in love with Rick and Morty. I don’t know if I have a crush on Justin Roiland, I just really love Rick (maybe even more than Morty). I don’t have a crush on Jerry, the dad, but I have a crush on Chris Parnell because he’s so good at being Jerry.

Jenn: I LOVE ISSA RAE!

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IFC: If you could go back in time and cast yourselves in any sitcom, which would it be and how would it change?

Carolyn: I’d go back in time and cast us in The Partridge Family.  We’d make an excellent family band. We’d have a laugh, break into song and wear ruffled blouses with velvet jackets.  And of course travel to all our gigs on a Mondrian bus. I feel really confident about this choice.

Meredith: Electric Mayhem from The Muppet Show. It wouldn’t change, they were simply perfect, except… maybe a few more vaginas in the band.

Binge the entire first and second seasons of Baroness von Sketch Show now on IFC.com and the IFC app.

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