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Stan Lee & JRSr. Talk Spidey on HSN

Bullseye

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From Newsarama.

STAN LEE & JOHN ROMITA SR. TALK 40 YEARS of SPIDEY/HSN APPEARANCE
On April 25th, comic book living legends Stan Lee and John Romita Jr. will make a rare television appearance on the Home Shopping Network along with Dynamic Forces Nick Barrucci, in part to celebrate the 40th Anniversary of Amazing Spider-Man #39-40.

Bryon S. Dane spent a few moments talking with the legends about the those issues, 40 years of Spider-Man, and their upcoming HSN appearance (details of which follow the Q&A)…

Newsarama: It’s been 40 years since the landmark Amazing Spider-Man story arc from issues #39-40. What is your clearest memory of the process leading up to the story that you started on John?

John Romita Jr.: 40 years..? No!!

Stan Lee: Since John Romita was taking over the Spider-Man strip with issue #39, I wanted the story to be something extra special. I felt that the fans wouldn't be able to resist a story in which both Spidey and the Green Goblin were unmasked and learned each other's secret identity!

Sure, I can believe it's been 40 years since those issues were printed. So much has happened since that it feels more like 40 centuries!

NRAMA: What sort of response did you receive from the readers at the time? Was it what you expected?

SL: The readers loved the stories—and loved Johnny's artwork—just as I had expected.

JR: “When is Ditko coming back?” from most fans. It took months to die down.

NRAMA: Back at the time, the books were successful, but at what point in your careers did you realize that comic books were going to be around for the long run, which is currently 40 years and counting?

JR: I told my wife Virginia often in the first five years, "don't expect this to last." I figured I'd be working in an ad agency soon enough. I still am amazed at how the comics industry has grown!

SL: I always realized it—from the first day I started working in comics, and I still feel that way. Stories that are told in words and pictures and printed it in an easy-to-carry and easy-to-collect magazine will always be attractive and fun to read for fans.

NRAMA: Is this TV appearance part of a larger promotional movement, or is this more of a one-time situation? How many more times will you be appearing on HSN and other shows to promote this?

SL: This TV appearance is a one-time thing for me. There may be more, but I never plan for more than one appearance at a time because I never know how busy I'll be in the future. I just take each event as it comes.

JR: No plans that I know of for further promotion. I think this is a one-time opportunity.

NRAMA: Moving from the small screen to the big screen, let's talk about Spidey and other Marvel characters in film. You two were probably dreaming of Marvel film success before Tobey Maguire was even a gleam in his parents' eyes. I'm sure the readers would love to hear some of your personal casting choices across the decades?

JR: I never dreamed they'd find such a perfect Peter Parker as Tobey Maguire, and Kirsten Dunst as MJ is fabulous.

SL: Years ago, before I even knew Tobey Maguire, when John Cusack was younger, I always thought he'd be a perfect Peter Parker. Of course, when I was a lot younger I would have loved to play J. Jonah Jameson! I also thought Rod Steiger would be a perfect Doc Ock.

NRAMA: While you didn’t get to play JJJ, Stan, you’re now a big-screen veteran, having appeared in several Marvel film adaptations and Kevin Smith's immortal Mallrats. Anything coming up on the silver screen in the future?

SL: Well, I've got a cameo in X-Men 3, but it's not exactly the kinda role that'll qualify me for an Oscar nomination. Of course, I'm still hoping Kevin Smith will do a sequel to Mallrats and that he'll let me play myself again—or anyone else, for that matter. I'm easy to please.

NRAMA: Even though Stan's got the movie resume, John, you’re no stranger to movie roles. You were in the Spider-Man 2,"ghosting" for Peter Parker's hand. What was it like having your hand directed by Sam Raimi?

JR: I'd heard he was a fan, but what a great fan he is really showed on the set. I was going to ask him what my motivation for the scene was, but…

The experience was memorable, but it never made it to the screen - not even on the DVD! I still get a small residual check once in a while.

NRAMA: Between the two of you, you've arguably created one of the most iconic female comic characters in Mary Jane Watson. Which came first, the idea or the look?

JR: Stan and Steve Ditko had hinted at her months before. All I did was give her a face and attitude!

SL: I guess I determined the character, but John gets 100% of the credit for "the look." Ain't nobody can draw gorgeous females like ol' Ring-a-Ding Romita. I think one of our greatest panels, which unfortunately wasn't included in the movie, was when an astonished Peter finally sees MJ for the first time and she says, "Face it, Tiger. You hit the jackpot!" That's one of my all-time favorite panels.

NRAMA: Stan - from a writer/creator standpoint, which Marvel character never really reached their full potential in your eyes? Is there any hero or villain you helped conceive that never reached the heights you had hoped for?

SL: Well, there was one villain named Diablo. I think I introduced him in the Fantastic Four. That's really all I can say about him because he was such a flop (in my eyes, anyway) that I can barely remember him.

Also, there was one hero I liked a lot and we never did all that much with him. That was Wyatt Wingfoot—also introduced in the FF. And, of course, I wish we had done much, much more with The Inhumans. I really dug them.

NRAMA: John, you're living proof that great comic art can be passed genetically. Is there a particular piece of work by your son that you consider to be a favorite?

JR: Amazing Spider-Man #36 is a masterpiece to me, and the best graphic novel ever is Daredevil: The Man Without Fear by John Jr. and Frank Miller.

NRAMA: Stan - on the HSN appearance, Dynamic Forces will be selling your original Spider-Man syndicated newspaper comic strips. Why have you held on to them, and let them go now?

SL: I've been so busy, I sort of forgot about these strips until Nick from Dynamic Forces reminded me!

NRAMA: John, almost 10 years ago, you signed Spider-Man #40 Iris Prints for Jim Lee's Wildstorm Iris Prints, and now DF found 50 of them, and is having these 50 signed by Stan and premiering on HSN to join your signature. What is it like to have one of your most famous pieces of artwork commemorated in this manner?

JR: Truly amazing, since the original comic was done under the usual deadline pressure and we were just glad to get anything out. It's nice that fans remember these issues so fondly, and that Wildstorm created the Iris print years ago.

NRAMA: Any final thoughts before we go?

JR: Years ago at a Stan Lee Roast, I said "the only thing worse than working with Stan Lee was not working with him!" I still recall with awe how much more clever and well-planned my Spider-Man pages looked after Stan's words were added…

LIVING LEGENDS STAN LEE AND JOHN ROMITA ON HSN!
Dynamic Forces on Air Live with Lee and Romita!

Press Release



April 12, 2006, Runnemede, NJ – Premiere comics and collectibles company Dynamic Forces returns to HSN this spring as DF President Nick Barrucci hits the air on April 25th with two very special guests! The 11PM EST Hour will not only feature the best and most “dynamic” comic collectibles, but will also feature the “dynamic duo” of POW Entertainment’s Stan “The Man” Lee and “jazzy” John Romita! Also, a special preview hour at 2AM EST (that’s 11PM PST on the 24th) with President Nick Barrucci featuring more “dynamic” comic collectibles, set to whet fans appetite for the 11PM show.

Legendary Marvel Universe founder Stan Lee and definitive Spider-Man artist John Romita Sr. will be joining Barrucci for the 11:00 PM show on the 25th. The appearance by Lee and Romita marks both their return to HSN after an absence of many years, and are appearing together for the first time. Celebrating an anniversary of his own is Romita who - 40 years ago this year - began his career defining work on the Amazing Spider-Man with the legendary Amazing Spider-Man #39 – Spider-Man against the Green Goblin! Together, these men represent the pinnacle of Marvel Comics and continue to proudly serve as living legends for the comics industry as a whole!

“It took a lot of work (coordinating their schedules) to get these two living legends together at the same time on the same day, but thanks to HSN and DF, we’ve got a real treat planned for everyone on April 25th,” exclaimed DF President Nick Barrucci. “We always have a lot of fun when either of these guys joins us for a special hour of comics and collectibles, can you imagine what it’s going to be like when they’re together?!?!? Oh, the stories they can tell!”

The show will feature collectible items that are premiering on HSN. Fans will have a diverse selection of comics autographed by Stan “The Man” Lee himself, with some being limited to only 25 signed copies in the world! And while the signed comics are special, matter of fact, we feel really special, THE item to get is going to be the one of a kind Spider-Man newspaper strips - from Stan’s personal collection - that are airing for the first time! That’s right – EACH ONE IS A ONE OF A KIND – each one is different! Each strip is an original from the Spider-Man Daily Newspaper strip that Stan started many years ago! Dynamic Forces has never brought such rare one of a kind items on the air before, and if this show is as successful as we think it is, may not be able to bring these on the air ever again! No collectible is more limited than ONE OF A KIND – and this is the most limited of them all. The Spider-Man Newspaper strip have appeared in thousands of newspapers worldwide over the last several decades, but fans can each purchase a ONE OF A KIND actual strip. Because of the nature of the strips, fans will be able to purchase one, but the strip being shipped will each be different, as no two strips are the same.

About the strips, their offering on this special show is the end results of the hard work of Dynamic Forces, and one man in particular, says Stan Lee: “I’ve been so busy I sort of forgot about these strips until Nicky reminded me! This show really is that important and will be seen by many, many fans.”

And for the Romita fans, Dynamic Forces has found a very special Iris Print Lithograph from 1996 – featuring the image from the first story “Jazzy” John Romita drew, featuring Spider-Man against his mortal enemy – The Green Goblin! This lithograph has been sold out from most outlets for years, but DF was able to acquire a few, and bring these on the air! For this special show, Dynamic was able to get Stan to sign 50 copies of this special litho, and these limited edition pieces of art will be premiering on HSN with both signatures! And remember, these are not being made to order. DF was fortunate to be able to locate 50 units, and bringing them on the air for this special show. Once these sell out, DF will not be able to acquire any more!

Concerning this amazing find – after all, it was almost 10 years ago Romita signed the Spider-Man #40 Iris Prints for Jim Lee's Wildstorm Iris Prints – Romita commented: “[being able to offer these is] Truly amazing, since drawing the comic 40 years ago was done under the usual deadline pressure and we were just glad to get anything out.

So be sure to tune in – and tell your family and friends (post on your favorite website, chat room or blog – pretty please with sugar on it) – Tuesday, April 25 beginning at 11:00 PM EST for DF, Stan Lee and John Romita Sr. – and for those wishing a sneak peak at 2AM on the 25ht EST – only on HSN!
 
SL: I guess I determined the character, but John gets 100% of the credit for "the look." Ain't nobody can draw gorgeous females like ol' Ring-a-Ding Romita. I think one of our greatest panels, which unfortunately wasn't included in the movie, was when an astonished Peter finally sees MJ for the first time and she says, "Face it, Tiger. You hit the jackpot!" That's one of my all-time favorite panels.

See this is what I mean about the Spidey movies not being faithful to the source material.
 
Yeah, and it was such a nice catchphrase.
 
Hey, that's right. MJ never said that in the movies did she? Too bad.
 
She did say that line, didn't she? It wasn't in the same context though.
 
I remember her saying "tiger", though.
 
She says "go get 'em, tiger" when Peter hears sirens at the end of Spider-Man 2. It didn't work as well as the "jackpot" line, though, because it wasn't their first meeting. She just randomly decided to call him "tiger" that one time out of the blue.
 
TheCorpulent1 said:
She says "go get 'em, tiger" when Peter hears sirens at the end of Spider-Man 2. It didn't work as well as the "jackpot" line, though, because it wasn't their first meeting. She just randomly decided to call him "tiger" that one time out of the blue.
I was shocked they did not say "face it tiger, you just hit the jackpot".
 
The sad thing is that even if they do decide to have her say the line in a future film it would never have the impact of the comics (IMO). In the comics, the great thing about that line is that after months of people wondering what the hell she looked like, those are the first words she says with her big reveal. Movie MJ never had the air of mystery that comic MJ had.
 
TheCorpulent1 said:
She says "go get 'em, tiger" when Peter hears sirens at the end of Spider-Man 2. It didn't work as well as the "jackpot" line, though, because it wasn't their first meeting. She just randomly decided to call him "tiger" that one time out of the blue.

She called him "Tiger" in the first movie as well..
 
TheCorpulent1 said:
She says "go get 'em, tiger" when Peter hears sirens at the end of Spider-Man 2. It didn't work as well as the "jackpot" line, though, because it wasn't their first meeting. She just randomly decided to call him "tiger" that one time out of the blue.

I'm fairly certain she called him "tiger" in the first movie as well.
 

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