Spider-Man: He does whatever a spider can, including spinning a web any size and catching thieves just like flies. It's a scientific fact.
But will the new "Spider-Man" relaunch, starring fresh-faced newbie Andrew Garfield, catch movie fans like flies? To find out, we've crunched the numbers and pored over all the latest reports -- and now we're ready to bring you all the buzz there is to know about next summer's epic blockbuster, "The Amazing Spider-Man."
Release Date: July 3, 2012
Star Power: Garfield has some momentum thanks to "The Social Network," but the biggest names are in his supporting cast, with Hollywood icons Martin Sheen and Sally Field playing Uncle Ben and Aunt May. Meanwhile, the always incredible Emma Stone plays Spidey's love interest Gwen Stacy, with Denis Leary playing her dad (!) police captain George Stacy. In other words, the casting director is a genius.
Next Factor: This is the chance of a lifetime for Garfield. Sure, he already earned a Golden Globe nomination for "The Social Network," so there's no doubt he's going to have a long and productive career in the movies. But "Amazing Spider-Man" has the potential to make him a household name and an A-list superstar. It doesn't get any bigger than this.
Behind the Camera: Marc Webb doesn't have quite the same filmography as "Spider-Man" director Sam Raimi did, but even though he's only made one previous feature film, it was a doozy: "(500) Days of Summer" earned a Golden Globe nomination for Best Motion Picture - Comedy or Musical last year and earned Webb a seat at the big table. Whether or not he brings his indie sensibilities to the relationship between Peter and Gwen could determine the tone of the film.
Movie Math: "Brick" ÷ "Batman Begins" x "Arachnophobia" = "The Amazing Spider-Man"
Backstory: The original "Spider-Man" trilogy from Sam Raimi and star Tobey Maguire was one of the most popular film franchises of the last decade, earning nearly $2.5 billion worldwide. So when those two called it quits, Sony decided it would really rather not lose untold billions in future profits and instead relaunched the series with a new director and lead actor. Will fans buy into it? That's the billion-dollar question.
In a Nutshell: Sony isn't tipping its hand too much in terms of the plot, but there are some things we know. Peter Parker is, as always, a geeky high school kid who gets bitten by a radioactive spider. It can be assumed that at some point, Uncle Ben dies, leading Pete to become Spider-Man. And we know that Dr. Curt Connors (Rhys Ifans), better known by his sinister alter ego The Lizard, is the bad guy. So an origin story mixed in with an awkward teen romance and an attack by a sub-human supervillain? Hey, being Spider-Man is no walk in the park.
The Buzz: Did we mention the part where the original trilogy made $2.5 billion? Well, that was just five years ago. And since superhero films have only gotten bigger and more popular since then -- with Spidey being perhaps the most popular of them all -- the buzz you're hearing will likely be a deafening roar by the time next July rolls around.
Why We're Psyched: "(500) Days of Summer" is a beloved favorite. Emma Stone is one of our favorite actresses alive. And we still wear our Spider-Man Underoos to work. Add all three of those things together and you get the formula for both a potential restraining order as well as one of the most exciting blockbusters in recent memory. Can Webb reimagine "Spider-Man" as successfully as Christopher Nolan reimagined "Batman"? We think -- and hope -- the answer is a resounding yes.