Will Bono and The Edge be able to save Spider-man? Is the masked superhero even in need of a rescue, given that his controversial, troubled stint on Broadway has been raking in millions even though it has yet to officially open?
The U2 stars, who wrote the music for Spider-man: Turn Off the Dark, finally saw their production in the flesh last week. The show has literally been limping along since a series of accidents sent some of its cast and crew to the hospital, with director Julie Taymor frantically working to improve safety without compromising the visually stunning stunts that she and the show’s backers hope will keep audiences coming in their droves for many years to come.
Due to U2 tour commitments Bono and The Edge hadn’t actually seen the show on stage, but according to its female lead Jennifer Damiano, they’re big fans of what they’re seeing at the Foxwoods Theatre.
“He had a great time and was very positive about the show,” Damiano, who plays Spider-Man's gal pal Mary Jane Watson, told Broadway.com about Bono’s words of encouragement.
“He told us to never underestimate the magnificence of what we’re doing and that’s really special to hear from him. He’s the coolest and just so correct about everything. When he (offers a suggestion) you always just say, ‘Wow, you’re so right.’ Every song they’ve written is so different, but they all make sense as a unit when you put them together,” she said of the musical’s original rock score.
Damiano says that Bono and The Edge are working with the cast to finalize what all hope will be a never to be forgotten experience for all the right reasons, instead of all the negative publicity the show’s been receiving in the wake of the injuries, cost over-runs, etc.
“They’re focused on the music in the show just like I’m focused on my own role, and we all have to come together to make this show incredible. But when I actually step outside of myself for a minute and see who I’m discussing these songs and scenes with, it kind of blows my mind! At the end of the day I wouldn’t want to be surrounded by any other people. You couldn’t ask for a cooler experience.”
Spider-man: Turn Off the Dark is supposed to officially open on February 7, after nearly three months of previews. It’s playing to nearly capacity audiences each night, but it will still take years of that to recoup the $65 million that producers have poured into it to date.
Bono won’t have to really about the money end of things, though. The investment firm he’s a partner in, Elevation Partners, was last week revealed to own a 1.5% stake in Facebook, which was recently valued at $50 billion by Goldman Sachs. Elevation reportedly has quadrupled the investment that it made in Facebook a while ago.