TRL's Maguire/Dunst Interview Lacking

The interview MTV did with Tobey Mcguire and Kirsten Dunst today didn't shed anymore light upon the "going's on" of Spider-Man 2, but did answer why Mary Jane was all dressed up in wedding gear in some of the pics we've seen. She'd getting engaged in the
by Robert Mancini, interviews by Ryan Kroft

For Tobey Maguire, home is where the spandex is.

"It was great putting on the Spider-Man suit again. It was like coming home," Maguire said during a break on the Los Angeles soundstage where he and his colleagues are putting together the eagerly awaited sequel to 2002's "Spider-Man."

On The Set: Exclusive "Spider-Man 2" Photos

Happy as he may be, home has to be a scary place these days. If it's true that nothing, not even the smallest of actions, occurs in a vacuum, then the crafting of the sequel to one of Hollywood's biggest hits of all time must surely happen in a whirlwind. So, as Maguire, Kirsten Dunst and director Sam Raimi return to the business of making Spider-Man magic, the still-billowing winds of two other major action franchises are undoubtedly whipping through the set.

First "X2: X-Men United" arrived, heralded by many as far superior to its predecessor, and certainly a bigger box-office draw. Then "The Matrix Reloaded" unloaded, bringing a big opening but ultimately a collective shrug from moviegoers, who felt that the second act didn't measure up to the opener. So as the challenge of living up to both fan expectations and business expectations looms over the filming of "Spider-Man 2," those involved are doing everything possible to deliver a tighter, stronger and all-around better film and are finding comfort in the familiar faces and easy feelings that rule the set.

"It's nice because you come back to the same old family," Dunst said of the shoot. "It's like an old hat that you're putting on again. It just feels good, and it's a very mellow, relaxed set. I'm actually having much more fun on this one."

"It's good to be working on something I'm excited about." — Tobey Maguire

"I really love the script, and I like the team of people who are making the movie," Maguire said. "We get along very well, and it's a great atmosphere. Sam's a very funny guy and fun to work with and also very intelligent and has a great vision for this film. I love working with him, and he sets the tone for the whole set. ... It's good to be working on something I'm excited about."

The cast and crew of "Spider-Man 2" may be one big happy family, but it's one with some major secrets. To maximize the impact of their would-be blockbuster, the cast and crew are keeping details about "Spider-Man 2" under wraps. Cast members have been given personalized scripts with their names emblazoned on each page and are urged to shred discarded pages.

"We're trying to keep as many elements of the story secret as possible because we really want to surprise the audience," Raimi explained. "I want to entertain them on the day [it opens]. I want them to come in and see the movie and not really know anything about it. Nowadays, movie theatrical trailers give away so much and TV commercials give away so much. If there's anything left I can save for the audience to really give them the experience of the movie when they see it, that is what I'm trying to do. I'm trying to save that for them."

Here's what the gang is willing to divulge: it's two years later and Peter Parker is settling into his photography career (when he isn't wall-crawling) while Mary Jane Watson is finding some degree of fame as an actress. Each has grown, but in varying degrees. "She's a much stronger woman in this one," Dunst said of her Mary Jane. "She's, like, independent. She's doing her own thing. And she's waking Peter up in this one because she's becoming a woman and he's still kind of a little boy."

"[At the end of the last film], we left Peter Parker walking away from Mary Jane Watson, deciding that he would live his life in a responsible way," director Raimi explained. "So part two is really watching Peter Parker travel down that road of responsibility, and the weight of the responsibility really weighs down upon him. I think we'll see him crumble beneath the weight in this story, and sometimes we'll see him overcome that burden and persevere. It's really a journey toward responsibility."

That's all you'll get for now. Press harder and the Spidey crew retreats, saying they can't tell you what exactly what happens but that it's damn good.

"In my opinion, we're making a better film than the first one."" — Tobey Maguire

"I think it's a great story," Maguire teased. "It's a very good, complete story, so it'll be a satisfying movie unto itself. I think, in my opinion, we're making a better film than the first one."

Alas, in the world of big Hollywood blockbusters it takes more than a compelling story and a well-crafted script to reach the promised land. Raimi and company know this and have a few new tricks up their sleeves for "Spider-Man 2." Everything from the costumes to the sets to the special effects are being rethought this time around as the filmmakers try to build on the foundation of the first film. That means more location shoots in New York (to better capture the city), more intense effects work and a new type of Hong Kong wire work for Spider-Man's fight sequences.

"I've seen what they plan to do," Maguire said. "I'm not sure how they are going to do all of it, but it's pretty ambitious and pretty cool."

Even Spidey's blue and red suit gets an upgrade, to a degree. Don't expect a major-league makeover, but the suit's hues are darker and richer, its lenses are set flush against the rest of the mask (leaving behind the bulging eyes of the first film), and the black spider emblem on the chest is larger and more in line with Spidey's other bold features.

Much of this fine tuning, however, may have been lost on the few who have actually seen the new suit. "The changes were so subtle that there wasn't really an overall reaction from the crew," Raimi said. "Most of the crew didn't even know that the costume had changed. But those of us who deal with it on an intimate basis every day realized that we had been quite successful."

In addition to the new toys are some new faces, at least behind the camera. Returning to the Raimi fold is old friend Bill Pope, who worked on Raimi's 1993 cult classic "Army of Darkness" before going on to handle cinematography on the "Matrix" trilogy. "He's bringing a great visual style to the film that I think will be a great leap upward for us," Raimi said. Production designer Neil Spisak, who worked with Raimi on the first Spider-Man film as well as "Face/Off" and "Heat," is also back with the director.

"I think the scope of the picture will be a lot bigger," Raimi said.

Of course, Spidey's return to the screen also brings a new villain.

Our hero's new rival is Dr. Octopus, a man known to S
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