Spider-Man: why was the kiss in the rain scene such an ordeal to shoot?

Return to the scene of the upside down kiss in the rain between Spider-Man and Mary-Jane: one of the most romantic and memorable sequences of Sam Raimi’s film, which was nevertheless a real test for both actors.

A small alley in downtown Manhattan at night, in the rain. After having put out of harm’s way the few criminals who had tried to attack Mary Jane, the Spider-Man, hanging from his web, upside down, faces the young girl. The latter tenderly removes the mask of the superhero to uncover his lips, and kisses him passionately.

This famous sequence, which is undoubtedly among the most romantic scenes ever seen in a superhero movie, is a real highlight in Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man, the first part of a mythical trilogy that began in 2002 (and now available on Amazon Prime Video).

However, despite the few stars in the eyes that this suspended moment can offer us, and contrary to what one might think, the scene was not easy for Tobey Maguire and Kirsten Dunst, interpreters of Peter Parker and Mary Jane Watson. Indeed, as the director had confided at the microphone of Rotten Tomatoes a few years ago, it even represented a real ordeal for the two actors:

“I remember we were in an outdoor studio and our mechanical effects team had created towers for the rain effects.”, says Sam Raimi.

Sony Pictures

“And just that, at night, it’s always a bit difficult for the actors. Because we chain the takes, and they are sprayed with cold water. And it can get very cold … I want to say, really freezing. They had to put up with this all night, I remember. Kirsten Dunst never said anything, but she was constantly shivering when we were discussing the scene. Tobey too, but they never did. complained. “

In addition to the freezing cold – amplified by the artificial rain – which reigned on the set, the interpreter of Spider-Man was forced to endure additional constraints, and not the least:

“It’s hard to hang upside down, unless you’ve been trained for it – your blood is rushing to your head very quickly, you have a headache.”, continues the filmmaker.

“Which was also complicated for him [Tobey Maguire]is that he was wearing a harness that sawed off his shoulders, because they weren’t really designed to be used upside down. And then, in the rain, as he was shooting the scene, I remember he was kinda drowning because he couldn’t wipe his nose. And the water was running inside his upside down nose, into his nostrils. So he was more or less drowning, and his only way to breathe was through his mouth. “

A mouth that, for most of the scene, was busy kissing Mary Jane’s. To sum up, in order to bring this unforgettable sequence to life, Tobey Maguire spent an entire night shivering in the rain, upside down, without being able to breathe.

Particularly unpleasant and extreme conditions that it is hard to imagine when (re) discovering the feature film. Uncle Ben had warned his nephew at the start of the film: playing Spider-Man implies great power … but also great responsibilities.

(Re) discover our video dedicated to Spider-Man …

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