It was nice to hear today from someone who knows what Broadway and Hollywood success looks like that Bono and Edge’s decision to put on the brakes for a while for Spider-Man: Turn Off The Dark was a good thing. Scott Rudin has won seven Tony Awards already as a Broadway producer, and he’s behind The Book of Mormon, which has been nominated for 14 Tonys this year. In 2008, he produced No Country For Old Men, which won the Best Picture Oscar and There Will Be Blood, nominated for that same award. He also produced The Social Network and True Grit, both of which were nominated for the Academy Award for Best Picture this year.
He was on NPR’s “All Things Considered” to talk about The Book of Mormon and his knack for getting a good story on the stage and screen. Co-host Robert Siegel brought up Spider-Man with a chuckle and called it “disastrous,” to which Rudin cut in and replied:
I don’t think you can say that, honestly. I mean, Spider-Man got off to a very rocky start, but I went back to Spider-Man last week and saw the new version and I think it’s hugely improved. One of the things, just in terms of context, you can’t fix something, profoundly, once you’ve started. I mean, you only get those four hours a day, four days a week. You get 16 hours of rehearsal and tech in which to turn a show around. So if you’re a show that’s really in trouble, you’re likely going to stay a show that’s really in trouble. The smartest thing I think they did, and I really admire the nerve of it, was to stop.
And then he said he has stopped production for three weeks right now to fix the story for a film project he’s working on. This part of the interview runs from the 5:20-6:27 mark and can be heard here at NPR’s site.