When we last checked in on Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark, all of ten days ago, the Julie Taymor-directed Broadway mega-spectacle had hired an actual Spider-Man comic book writer to revise Julie Taymor and Glen Berger’s book, and though no delays due to rewrites were announced it hardly seemed unlikely that the March 15 opening date would get pushed back again. On Saturday ArtsBeat reported that the musical’s opening might be delayed until June.
Because in addition to script changes coming from Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, the production will be dealing with any changes that may be recommended by Paul Bogaev, a longtime conductor and music supervisor on Broadway recently hired as a consultant on the show, and the possible addition of director Philip William McKinley as a co-director alongside Taymor. The show is currently doing the bare minimum box office it needs to break even (which is to say about $1.3 to $1.4 per week) despite tons of terrible reviews (and one glowing endorsement).
As many have noted, the show’s perpetual work-in-progress status and the possibility of malfunctions and accidents have been essential factors in its ubiquity in the media, so opening might actually be the worst thing for it. One thing the opening delay will affect, however, is Turn Off the Dark‘s Tony Awards eligibility. The cut-off for this year’s Tonys is April 28, and though the back-loading of awards contenders on the seasonal schedule isn’t as pronounced on Broadway as it is for the Oscars, it’s certainly a factor. An announcement regarding the seemingly inevitable delay is expected this week.