Thomas Haden Church has obviously hit it off with his Spider-Man 3 director Sam Raimi. And it appears that he’s also become a bit of a fan of the franchise itself.
But getting him to spill secrets is another matter, which must be why Raimi has let him loose to talk to the press. While out promoting his animated critter-com Over The Hedge (he plays the villain – an animal hating pest controller), he’s also been mentioning his other job, the one that has kept him busy for the past 13 months and which features a certain web-slinging superhero. He nabbed the part of Sandman, AKA Flint Marko, way back in 2005, but according to MSN Movies, he was sworn to secrecy - at least until the official picture arrived. And he’s also been enjoying working with Raimi.
"Sam and I started having really involved sessions about who the guy was," Church says. "Clearly, it's taken from the fourth issue of Spider-Man, which was when Sandman was introduced and which I now have framed on my wall." Well, clearly, geek boy.
All ribbing aside, his enthusiasm is hard to suppress. "I'm overwhelmed every time I'm around Sam," Church says. "He's been showing me stuff since the beginning of last summer. 'This is what we are going to be doing in this sequence, this is what Spider-Man is going to be doing and this is what Venom is going to be doing.' It is a massive, massive process." Yes, he let slip the V-word. Sadly, that’s his only mention of the alien symbiote.
And what about that picture of him as Marko, the thuggish mafia heavy who will be turned into a creature of living sand? The reactions were fast and strong - and Church has seen them.
"They gave me a stack of printed out posting-board mentions, and it was too much," Church admits. "We were all sitting around going through it and it was all, like, 'Dude, that picture of Sandman rules! Church is perfect for the part!' It makes me think it's really the biggest superhero franchise." So remember people: be careful what you post on those forums. You never know who’s reading.