This video apparently has been floating around for about a year now, but Amalgamated Dynamics Inc. — the Hollywood practical-effects studio responsible for it — finally posted it themselves on YouTube last month. It’s a two-minute look at an incredible animatronic Green Goblin mask that the studio designed for Sam Raimi’s original Spider-Man movie, one that was ultimately rejected for the inexpressive metal mask that William Dafoe wears in the film. Here, check out the video:
Passing on that in favor of this seems insane, and the only real reason I can come up with for the decision was that perhaps Raimi felt ADI’s mask would be too creepy for a superhero film designed to appeal to kids. I guess it’s also possible there was worry that by having Osborn’s face “mutate” in the story, which seems to be what ADI’s mask was meant to convey, you effectively bury Dafoe’s performance for too much of the film. Although I’d argue that, based on this video, the mask stood a good chance of out-performing Dafoe anyway.
There’s a lot wrong with Raimi’s original Spidey film — I wasn’t a fan when it was released, and time hasn’t done it any favors — and by no means was the film effectively sunk by this one decision. But had ADI’s mask been used instead of the cheap Halloween costume they went with, I think there’s at least one aspect of the film that would have left a lasting impression.
Thanks to the folks at the CHUD forum, who first made me aware of this video.