'Spider-Man' Producers Defend Decision to Delay Opening

2:37 PM PST 01/15/2011 by Sofia M. Fernandez
Sara Krulwich/The New York Times

The brain trust behind Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark are defending their decision to push back the musical's opening date to March 15. 

Lead producer Michael Cohl maintains that the five-week extension is needed to rework some music and lyrics, incorporate a new aeriel sequence, and finalize a closing number.

He told the New York Times, "This is a very different kind of Broadway show: a rock 'n' roll circus drama, a piece of action theater. We're not bound by old expectations of when to open or not to open. We'll open when the show is ready to open."

Spider-Man was originally slated to debut Dec. 21, 2010 and has had subsequent opening night dates of Jan. 11, Feb. 7, and now, March 15.

Director Julie Taymor told the Times she's using the extra month to sharpen the script. She said, "I'm not changing the story, I'm trying to make it better."

When the $65 million-plus production does raise its official opening curtain, it will have had a record 110 preview performances and will have run longer in previews than some productions did in their entire run, notes the Times.

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