EXCLUSIVE: Sam Raimi Talks ‘Spider-Man 4’ Villain Possibilities — But Will He Go Obscure?

It’s a question on the minds of film buffs and comics fans alike, as they look forward to 2011’s return of Peter Parker to the big-screen: Who will he be fighting?

Recently, Sam Raimi revealed to us that he’s a mere four weeks away from reading a first draft of the “Spider-Man 4” script. And along with writer David Lindsay-Abaire, there are a few key elements they’re looking for in a potential villain.

“I’ve talked with David about a possible villain, villains, villain-ess,” the director grinned, being careful not to reveal genders or numbers in regards to Spidey’s nemesis. “[We’ve spoken] about who knows what Spider-Man’s conflicting personas would be.”

Some longtime Spidey fans are arguing these days that Raimi should stick to the bigger-name characters and have Peter Parker square off against someone like The Lizard, Venom or Carnage, while others would prefer to see him shine a spotlight on such more-obscure villains as Morbius, the Living Vampire or Sinister Six characters like Vulture or Electro. At this point, Raimi told us he’s open to introducing even the most obscure of supervillains.

“That would be absolutely fine,” explained the filmmaker, whose insanely intense “Drag Me to Hell” lands in theaters later this month. “But I’m not looking [for things] like that.”

“I’m trying to, with the writer, find Peter Parker’s story primarily,” Raimi said of what factors will weigh on his selection of supervillains. “And find the right conflict for him to come up against. So that either he can grow as a human being and overcome this thing, or perish. It’s more about finding the villain that represents the best story for Peter.”

And although Raimi revealed to us that he does know which super-villains Lindsay-Abaire is working into his script, they are still subject to change. “Really, I have to read the screenplay and see if it’s working, what we’ve discussed,” explained the filmmaker. “Before I really, in my heart, could tell you that I knew.”

“Spider-Man 4” is due in theaters May 6, 2011.

What do you think? Should Raimi go with popular villains, or make a star out of a more obscure character? Who would you like to see on the big screen?