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“The Amazing Spider-Man” almost had a cameo in “The Avengers”

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Now that “The Avengers” is out and dominating the box office, it’s time to look back at what might have been. A good portion of the film’s plot is dedicated to the creation of Stark Tower, but apparently that wasn’t going to be the only famous Marvel skyscraper gracing the movie’s New York City skyline.

In an interview with Latino Review, “The Amazing Spider-Man” producers Avi Arad and Matthew Tomlach dished that they had planned to sneak the Oscorp Building into “The Avengers.”

The Oscorp Building (as pictured above) will play a pivotal role in “The Amazing Spider-Man.” Dr. Curt Connors, who ends up becoming the Lizard, works for Oscorp, and Gwen Stacy is an intern there. More importantly, Peter Parker’s father used to work at Oscorp before he disappeared when Peter was a child.

We’ve seen Oscorp in the Sam Raimi “Spider-Man” movies as well. Norman Osborn, the founder of Oscorp, was the villain of “Spider-Man” after one of his experiments went awry and he turned into the Green Goblin (Willem Dafoe). His son Harry Osborn (James Franco) used to be Peter’s best friend before he discovered his father’s secret identity and fate at the hands of Spider-Man. He would later become the second Green Goblin.

As we all now know from the lack of the building in the flick, it didn’t work out. But it wasn’t because Marvel and Sony weren’t interested. Instead, the crossover didn’t work because the “Spider-Man” design team wasn’t done crafting the Oscorp Building by the time “The Avengers” needed it.

J Michael Riva, who recently passed away, was responsible for the design of “The Amazing Spider-Man’s” Oscorp Building as well as the Stark structures in the first two “Iron Man” films. Because of the stylistic similarities, Disney and Sony started discussing — and reportedly agreed on — having that small connection (the inclusion of Oscorp) bridge their two superhero franchises.

This isn’t the first time Marvel has tried to cross over Sony’s superhero universe with their own. Back when the studio was developing “The Incredible Hulk,” there had been a brief hope that Sony would allow Marvel to have a Peter Parker cameo at the university where Bruce Banner worked. It never panned out, but maybe third time is the charm?

Actual character crossovers between studios is a “business impossibility,” but Tomlach did say that Sony would love to team up with Marvel in the future to do some crossovers on a smaller level.

Would you want to see Spider-Man make an appearance in the Marvel cinematic universe? Tell us in the comments section below or on Facebook and Twitter.

Soap tv show

As the Spoof Turns

15 Hilarious Soap Opera Parodies

Catch the classic sitcom Soap Saturday mornings on IFC.

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Photo Credit: Columbia Pictures Television

The soap opera is the indestructible core of television fandom. We celebrate modern series like The Wire and Breaking Bad with their ongoing storylines, but soap operas have been tangling more plot threads than a quilt for decades. Which is why pop culture enjoys parodying them so much.

Check out some of the funniest soap opera parodies below, and be sure to catch Soap Saturday mornings on IFC.

1. Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman

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Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman was a cult hit soap parody from the mind of Norman Lear that poked daily fun at the genre with epic twists and WTF moments. The first season culminated in a perfect satire of ratings stunts, with Mary being both confined to a psychiatric facility and chosen to be part of a Nielsen ratings family.


2. IKEA Heights

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IKEA Heights proves that the soap opera is alive and well, even if it has to be filmed undercover at a ready-to-assemble furniture store totally unaware of what’s happening. This unique webseries brought the classic formula to a new medium. Even IKEA saw the funny side — but has asked that future filmmakers apply through proper channels.


3. Fresno

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When you’re parodying ’80s nighttime soaps like Dallas and Dynasty , everything about your show has to equally sumptuous. The 1986 CBS miniseries Fresno delivered with a high-powered cast (Carol Burnett, Teri Garr and more in haute couture clothes!) locked in the struggle for the survival of a raisin cartel.


4. Soap

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Soap was the nighttime response to daytime soap operas: a primetime skewering of everything both silly and satisfying about the source material. Plots including demonic possession and alien abduction made it a cult favorite, and necessitated the first televised “viewer discretion” disclaimer. It also broke ground for featuring one of the first gay characters on television in the form of Billy Crystal’s Jodie Dallas. Revisit (or discover for the first time) this classic sitcom every Saturday morning on IFC.


5. Too Many Cooks

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Possibly the most perfect viral video ever made, Too Many Cooks distilled almost every style of television in a single intro sequence. The soap opera elements are maybe the most hilarious, with more characters and sudden shocking twists in an intro than most TV scribes manage in an entire season.


6. Garth Marenghi’s Darkplace

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Garth Marenghi’s Darkplace was more mockery than any one medium could handle. The endless complications of Darkplace Hospital are presented as an ongoing horror soap opera with behind-the-scenes anecdotes from writer, director, star, and self-described “dreamweaver visionary” Garth Marenghi and astoundingly incompetent actor/producer Dean Learner.


7. “Attitudes and Feelings, Both Desirable and Sometimes Secretive,” MadTV

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Soap opera connoisseurs know that the most melodramatic plots are found in Korea. MADtv‘s parody Tae Do  (translation: Attitudes and Feelings, Both Desirable and Sometimes Secretive) features the struggles of mild-mannered characters with far more feelings than their souls, or subtitles, could ever cope with.


8. Twin Peaks

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Twin Peaks, the twisted parody of small town soaps like Peyton Place whose own creator repeatedly insists is not a parody, has endured through pop culture since it changed television forever when it debuted in 1990. The show even had it’s own soap within in a soap called…


9. “Invitation to Love,” Twin Peaks

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Twin Peaks didn’t just parody soap operas — it parodied itself parodying soap operas with the in-universe show Invitation to Love. That’s more layers of deceit and drama than most televised love triangles.


10. “As The Stomach Turns,” The Carol Burnett Show

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The Carol Burnett Show poked fun at soaps with this enduring take on As The World Turns. In a case of life imitating art, one story involving demonic possession would go on to happen for “real” on Days of Our Lives.


11. Days of our Lives (Friends Edition)

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Still airing today, Days of Our Lives is one of the most famous soap operas of all time. They’re also excellent sports, as they allowed Friends star Joey Tribbiani to star as Dr Drake Ramoray, the only doctor to date his own stalker (while pretending to be his own evil twin). And then return after a brain-transplant.

And let’s not forget the greatest soap opera parody line ever written: “Come on Joey, you’re going up against a guy who survived his own cremation!”


12. Acorn Antiques

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First appearing on the BBC sketch comedy series Victoria Wood As Seen on TV, Acorn Antiques combines almost every low-budget soap opera trope into one amazing whole. The staff of a small town antique store suffer a disproportional number of amnesiac love-triangles, while entire storylines suddenly appear and disappear without warning or resolution. Acorn Antiques was so popular, it went on to become a hit West End musical.


13. “Point Place,” That 70s Show

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In a memorable That ’70s Show episode, an unemployed Red is reduced to watching soaps all day. He becomes obsessed despite the usual Red common-sense objections (like complaining that it’s impossible to fall in love with someone in a coma). His dreams render his own life as Point Place, a melodramatic nightmare where Kitty leaves him because he’s unemployed. (Click here to see all airings of That ’70s Show on IFC.)


14. The Spoils of Babylon

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Bursting from the minds of Will Ferrell and creators Andrew Steele and Matt Piedmont, The Spoils of Babylon was a spectacular parody of soap operas and epic mini-series like The Thorn Birds. Taking the parody even further, Ferrell himself played Eric Jonrosh, the author of the book on which the series was based. Jonrosh returned in The Spoils Before Dying, a jazzy murder mystery with its own share of soapy twists and turns.

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15. All My Children Finale, SNL

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SNL‘s final celebration of one of the biggest soaps of all time is interrupted by a relentless series of revelations from stage managers, lighting designers, make-up artists, and more. All of whom seem to have been married to or murdered by (or both) each other.

“Venom” movie could exists within “Spider-Man” film universe

Venom

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With “The Amazing Spider-Man” due out in theaters in less than a month, it seems like asking the higher ups at Sony what is up with their planned “Venom” standalone movie is fair game.

That’s exactly what Hollywood.com did when they had a chance to sit down with “Spider-Man” producers Avi Arad and Matthew Tolmach. It turns out that they do have some master plan for the way “Venom” will fit into the greater “Spider-Man” universe.

“Hopefully all these worlds will live together in peace someday,” Tolmach said.

That sounds markedly similar to the approach Marvel took on “The Avengers” and Warner Bros is taking on their planned “Justice League” movie. But somehow we doubt that Venom will one day team up with Spider-Man and some other characters from the universe that have been introduced in solo movies to fight crime in an ensemble adventure. After all, Sony tried having Venom in a Spider-Man movie before, to unsatisfying results.

Instead, we merely think that Tolmach wants to create a fully fleshed out “Spider-Man” film universe that Venom can be a part of.

“It’s an Eddie Brock story,” he said. “We want to be as close to the comics as possible. Especially in Eddie Brock’s story. But again, pseudo-science is becoming science. All these tidbits about webs, artificial webs, is a huge industry now. Spiderwebs have unique qualities that will be huge for communications, fibers, and so forth. So we have taken the approach that we want to make the huge amazing movie about Eddie.”

When asked how Sony is approaching characters like Venom, Tolmach said, “He was a journalist. He had the wrong story, he got in trouble for it, he got fired. The whole essence to us for the Marvel characters is stay close to the bible, stay close to the emotional story, and the rest is fun. Look for the worlds to make sense with one another.”

“The Amazing Spider-Man” is due in theaters on July 3.

Do you like this approach to telling Venom’s story? Tell us in the comments section below or on Facebook and Twitter.

The Lizard heads to Oscorp in new “The Amazing Spider-Man” clip

The Lizard in The Amazing Spider-Man

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A new clip from “The Amazing Spider-Man” debuted on “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno” last night and features a sequence showing The Lizard coming to Oscorp. It’s pretty badass, so we would say it’s even worth listening to three minutes of Jay Leno just to get to it. Emma Stone manages to make it all worthwhile, and somehow during that period of time she makes watching Nickelodeon show “iCarly” seem like the most interesting show we ever had no interest in seeing.

This clip seems to take place towards the end of the movie, based on the dramatic music and the fact that Dr. Curt Connors is already mutated. We love the tension in the scene, and the way it showcases Peter Parker’s relationship with Gwen Stacy. It’s clear from this that she’s no damsel in distress, and Stone’s strength as an actress makes Gwen’s decision to put herself in danger seems brave instead of idiotic. Everything new we see of Andrew Garfield’s Spiderman makes us more and more invested in his version of the character, and that can be said about this clip as well.

And now at least we know where this still came from.

Starring Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone, “The Amazing Spider-Man” focuses on Peter Parker’s journey to discover the secret of his parents’ early death. That brings him face-to-face with Dr. Curt Connors, played by Rhys Ifans, who ends up becoming the film’s villain, The Lizard. It’s due in theaters on July 3.

What did you think of this new clip? Tell us in the comments section below or on Facebook and Twitter.

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