Evan Rachel Wood is Broadway's Mary Jane
While Kirsten Dunst has brought Mary Jane Watson to life on the screen, it appears that Evan Rachel Wood will do the same on Broadway.
According to IESB, the actress confirmed that she has been cast as Mary Jane in the long-in-development Spider-Man musical. Rehersals, according to Wood, are scheduled to begin in June of 2009.
The musical has been in the works since 2004, and a suspected by some fans to be a joke for shortly after its initial announcement. The show will be produced by Julie (The Lion King) Taymor, while Bono and The Edge of U2 are writing the music and lyrics.
Last year, a reading was held for the musical, with Playbill describing the roles that needed to be filled for the musical.
Among the roles being sought to fill are the young-man-turned-hero Peter Parker/Spider-Man ("male, late teens to early 20's...[with a] great pop/rock voice") and love-interest Mary Jane ("female, late teens to early 20's...[with a] great pop/rock voice") as well as villain Norman Osborn/Green Goblin and Daily Bugle publisher J. Jonah Jameson (both call for "male, 50s.")
The character breakdowns provide some insight to plot points as the character Arachne ("female, 20-35 years old, any ethnicity") is described as "a beautiful, boastful young woman turned into a spider for her hubris and lack of respect for the gods. She subsequently appears to Peter Parker and the audience as in turn a powerful spider-woman who comes from another time to inspire Peter; an otherworldly lover; a bride; a terrifying (and sexy) dark goddess of vengeance; a dance partner in a charged and violent spiders dance of death; and, finally, a lonely, fragile young woman." Casting is seeking a "strong Celtic, Balkan style, e.g., Sinead O'Connor," noting, "outside the box ideas are welcomed. Could be someone from the music industry."
Also, a "Geek Chorus" consisting of "three teenage boys and one girl" are described to "meet to ritualistically retell the greatest Spider-Man stories.
Jim Sturgess, who co-starred with Wood in Across the Universe has been rumored to be playing Peter Parker in the musical. According to IESB, Wood said that they are “still trying to convince him.”
As reported by The New York Post in October, the current budget for Spider-Man: The Musical is a reported $40 million, making it the most expensive Broadway production in history.
As the Post’s Michael Riedel commented: If - and it's a big "if" where Julie The Lion Taymor is concerned - they do bring it in for $35 million, "Spider-Man," with a weekly running cost of $1 million, will have to run about 8,000 years in a Broadway theater just to break even.