Director Marc Webb sticks to "Spider-Man" movie

Tue Jan 19, 2010 8:11pm EST
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LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - "Spider-Man" movie fans have a new director in their web with a fitting last name.

Marc Webb, whose work includes the critically acclaimed hit romance "(500) Days of Summer," will direct the fourth movie in the billion-dollar film franchise, which is expected in theaters in 2012, Columbia Pictures said on Tuesday.

Webb replaces Sam Raimi at the helm of the movie series that has raked in $2.5 billion worldwide at theaters since 2002.

Earlier this month, the studio said it wanted to turn a "new chapter" in the movies and take the Marvel comic-book crime fighter's alter ego, Peter Parker, back to high school.

Raimi and actor Tobey Maguire, who had portrayed Parker/Spider-Man, bowed out of the production, paving the way for a new director and star, who has yet to be named.

In a statement, Webb said the assignment was a "dream come true." Webb rose through the ranks directing music videos for such bands as Green Day, The All-American Rejects and Weezer.

Columbia is a unit of Japanese electronics giant Sony Corp.

(Editing by DeanGoodman)

<p>U.S. director Marc Webb poses during a photocall for the film "Me and Orson Welles" at the 35th Deauville American film festival in Deauville September 6, 2009. REUTERS/Pascal Rossignol</p>