Topher Grace has joined the cast of "Spider-Man 3," it was announced by director Sam Raimi and producers Laura Ziskin and Marvel Studio’s Avi Arad. Grace will join Tobey Maguire, Kirsten Dunst, James Franco, and Thomas Haden Church in the blockbuster franchise. "Spider-Man 3" is scheduled for release on May 4, 2007, and will reunite returning cast members with director Sam Raimi and producers Ziskin and Arad, the successful filmmaking team responsible for the first two films.
The Spider-Man film franchise has grossed more than $1.5 billion in worldwide ticket sales to date. Production on "Spider-Man 3," which was written by Alvin Sargent, is scheduled to begin early next year. "I couldn’t be more excited about the direction we are taking the continuing adventures of Peter Parker," said Raimi. "Topher Grace is an extraordinarily talented actor and will be perfect for the complexities of the role we are developing."
While speculation continues about which characters will be called into action, the studio will not comment on the new roles beyond confirming the casting of Grace and Church. Grace, who has been a weekly fixture in homes across America in the hit comedy series "That ’70s Show" for the last 7 years, is seamlessly transitioning from the small screen to the big screen. Testament to his success, he has recently been prized with Breakthrough Acting awards by both the National Board of Review and the New York Online Film Critics, for his starring roles in Paul Weitz‘s "In Good Company" and Dylan Kidd‘s "P.S."