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Bono and the Edge discuss the Spider-Man musical that may or may not happen

November 5, 2009 |  3:19 pm


Friday's Los Angeles Times features a report on the efforts to bring Marvel's Spider-Man to the stage, which has "turned into a tangled web of production delays, unpaid bills and costly theater renovations that even Peter Parker's alter ego would struggle to escape," according to John Horn's piece.

Based on interviews with a half dozen people close to the show, Horn writes that the budget for the musical has rocketed past $52 million in its six years of development. Music duties for the production are being handled by U2's lead singer, Bono, and the group's guitarist, the Edge. Bono, writes Horn, is a bit bewildered by the show's odyssey. "But who cares?" Bono said. "The visuals and the music are amazing, and that's what will matter."

Horn also provides some insight into the music of the production. An excerpt:

Famous for their soaring, sometimes political rock anthems, such as "Sunday Bloody Sunday" and "Pride (in the Name of Love)," Bono and Edge have crafted "Spider-Man" songs that are driven more by choral harmonies than lashing guitars. Because U2 does not play in the show (the performers are accompanied instead by a band and an orchestra), the songs are written for different voices (including women) with non-U2 arrangements.

Bono described his and Edge's compositions as varying from "giant, big pop songs to noisy rock 'n' roll to ethereal shivers" and said it was "the easiest job we've ever done when it comes to the pure joy.

"For me it's this wonderful thing of escaping from the first-person songwriting, to disappear into these outside characters, it's just been a thrill of a ride," Bono said. "You spend so much time digging up diamonds in your own music; it's a treat to dig in somebody else's dirt. To work on these songs was like a playpen."

Edge said he and his longtime partner were surprised that the rigidity of the musical format was actually liberating. "The process," he said, "got more fun, exponentially, as it went on."

Edge believes "Spider-Man" will eventually make it to Broadway. "It will happen," the guitarist said. Read The Times' story for a closer look at the production.

-- Todd Martens


U2_ROSE_BOWL_BONOSpider-Man coverage at Hero Complex

Alan Cumming says Spider-Man musical is still crawling forward

'Spider-Man' musical hanging by a thin web?

Bono takes Spider-Man to Broadway but says 'I'm more of a Green Gobl

PHOTOS: U2's 360 Tour: Live at the Rose Bowl

Amid the rattle and hum before U2's Rose Bowl show

The masses descend upon Pasadena for U2's Rose Bowl gig

Making the U2 set so big that it's invisible

INTERACTIVE GRAPHIC: U2 360 tour: Stadium in the round

Photos: Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times