The 2004 superhero film “Spider-Man 2” has some of the most interesting facts to me and, being my favorite film, I thought it be fun to talk about a few on my birthday which is today. I turn 26 today. Anyway a lot of subtext was in the movie that Raimi brought attention to.
First, if you look closely at the apartment of the main character Peter Parker (Played by Tobey Macguire), you can see the picture he took of Mary-Jane Watson (Played by Kirsten Dunst) just before he was bitten by a radioactive spider. This picture was supposed to represent the last moment of innocence in Peter’s life before it changed forever. Second, the scene where Peter is having dinner with Dr. Otto Octavius / Doctor Octopus (Played by Alfred Molina) and his wife Rosalie Octavius (Played by Donna Murphy) was intended as a sad mirror of the family life that Peter wants but can never have. Third, the alley where Peter dumps his Spider-Man suit is supposed to be the same one where he kissed Mary-Jane upside down in the first film, 2002’s “Spider-Man”. Fourth, the phone number on Peter’s helmet for Joe’s Pizzeria (212-366-1182) is to a real NY Pizza place and, evidently, they love the publicity. Fifth, Peter’s landlord Mr. Ditkovitch (Played by Elya Baskin) is named for Steve Ditko, original illustrator of Spider-Man comics.
On a final note is that during this shoot two long-time collaborators fell out during this film…only to reunite almost a decade later. And those people were director Sam Raimi and composer Danny Elfman, who did the film score (for this and several other films by Sam Raimi). See, Elfman had some sort of falling out with the director during the course of this film, and has been quoted saying, “To see such a profound negative change in a human being was almost enough to make me feel like I didn’t want to make films anymore.” Composer Christoper Young would end up composing “Spider-Man 3” in 2007. However, Raimi and Elfman reunited 9 years later for Raimi’s 2013 film “Oz the Great and Powerful”.
You always find the good films have a million stories behind their production and among the actors. The emotions and subtext create a deepening effect on audience members that last years later when those audience members revisit those films. That is why, since I was a teenager and to this day, “Spider-Man 2” remains my favorite film. It’s emotion and it’s depth still affects me and that is how I know it is still my favorite.