Spidey Eats, More Matrix Casting

According to Comics Continuum, the Sony marketing department is looking into a fast-food franchise tie-in to coincide with the May 2002 release of Spider-Man. While this has potential to be cool for action figure collectors and comic book fans, it could pose a potential problem for the man underneath the red and blue lycra suit. According to a Spider-Man crew member, Tobey Maguire is a vegetarian — and he’s not the kind of vegetarian who might eat the occasional pepperoni on a pizza. Our insider tells us Maguire is such a strict vegetarian that it has posed a few problems with the movie’s catering service (as well as his ability to stay buff for the movie). On more than one instance, they had to run out and get special items for the Cider House Rules star. (He’s reportedly seriously addicted to Mrs. Fields’ chocolate chip cookies.) We sort of hope his contract requires him to take a big bite out of a tasty burger in the commercials. Who ever heard of a vegetarian Spider-Man?

As for the fast-food tie-in, it most likely won’t be with McDonald’s, as they have an exclusive deal with Walt Disney. Sorry kids, no Happy Meal toys. Since another Marvel property, the animated X-Men: Evolution series, has promotional ties with Taco Bell, Comics Continuum speculates the Spider-man tie-in may be with one of the Pepsi restaurant chains (Taco Bell, Pizza Hut, or KFC). Why not IHOP? What does the studio have against a nice greasy morning meal? I-HOP! I-HOP! I-HOP!

Spoiler alert for those of you not familiar with the Spider-Man backstory: In one last bit of Spider-Man news, according to the Birmingham News, Michael Papajohn, a stuntman and actor who has played assorted thugs and villains in movies including Charlie’s Angel’s and Predator 2, has signed on for the role of the burglar who kills Uncle Ben, which, of course, is the incident that prompts young Peter Parker to become a crime fighter. Director Sam Raimi is again employing actors he’s worked with in the past. Papajohn appeared in Raimi’s baseball flick For the Love of the Game.

Carrie-Anne Moss isn’t going to be the ass kicking babe in the upcoming Matrix sequels. According to the Hollywood Reporter, the delicious singer-actress Aaliyah (Romeo Must Die) will be joining Keanu Reeves down under when filming gets underway later this spring. However, the trade paper doesn’t elaborate on the ongoing casting rumors surrounding the movie. As you probably know, at one time Jet Li was reportedly up for a role in the sci-fi actioner. However, his publicity people have been trying to put that rumor to rest for awhile now. Michelle Yeoh’s name was then circulating as a possible replacement, but those rumors died a quick death, only to be replaced by speculation of Francoise Yip’s (Rumble in the Bronx) involvement.

Aaliyah has become the actress of choice for Warner Bros. In addition to Matrix producer Joel Silver’s Romeo Must Die, she just finished filming the vampire flick Queen of the Damned for the studio.