Over at Arrow in the Head, Eric Walkuski gathers together various quotes (gleaned from Sci Fi Wire) from Kirsten Dunst and Sam Raimi, regarding whether there will be a SPIDER-MAN 4.
Dunst's take (which Walkuski - rather un-galantly - disputes) is that the Sony Pictures would not make a sequel without her, Tobey Maguire, and Sam Raimi involved.
Raimi's take is that, in order to work on another sequel, he would need to find somewhere for the Peter Parker character to grow - some life lesson he could learn that would make the film worthwhile.
Walkuski's post also includes a quote from Raimi about being approached to direct THE HOBBIT, a prequel to LORD OF THE RINGS. Raimi says the rumors are over-blown, based on a single meeting he had with New Line executive Robert Shaye:
- "...even though I have spoken to Bob Shaye...I don't know that I could honestly say that anything's been offered to me until some time in the future, because it just wouldn't be exactly right. Or true."
Raimi also says he would not want to take on THE HOBBIT unless he knew that LORD OF THE RINGS director Peter Jackson would not object to Raimi's taking over.
UPDATE: Reuters has an article on the eagerly anticipated SPIDER-MAN 3 (pre-release tickets sales are strong, apparently), in which Raimi says he is too tired to think of future Spidey movies: "I'm just exhausted, and I need to get away from it for awhile."
As for the current film, Raimi promises that it is not just a rehash of what came before: "We were not going to keep remaking the same sotry - even though there are similar elements to all the SPIDER-MAN films - we're going to continue the growth of this guy as a human being."
As for a fourth film in the trilogy, Raimi says he has heard that Sony Pictures is working on one, though he cannot yet say whether he will be involved: "I think they have talked about that, and I'd love to read what they'r developing."