All of the screams Kirsten Dunst had for this film were recycled from Spider-Man 2.
Bryce Dallas Howard performed her own stunts during the crane accident scene, unaware that she was pregnant at the time of filming.
There were many scenes that were shot but never released on DVD including a montage of Peter (in his black suit) taking down criminals and leaving them strung up, tons of character-building moments, a confrontation scene between Captain Stacy and Eddie Brock (where Gwen dumps him at her father's house) and Peter freaking out after he looks in a mirror and sees a nightmarish version of the Venom symbiote screaming at him.
In total, the film took 2 years and 10 months to make.
On May 4th, 2007, while promoting the film on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Thomas Haden Church revealed that he broke three knuckles during the subway scene where he swings to punch Spider-Man and ends up punching a chunk of the wall away. Church said that the effects crew had told him that the brick in the middle was fake while the upper and lower ones were real. Unfortunately, the foam brick had not actually been put in place yet, and when Sam Raimi yelled 'action', Church spun around and punched the real brick on the first take.
Cliff Robertson's last film.
While Topher Grace was a big comic book fan and had read the first Venom stories as a boy, he found the suit he had to wear as Venom extremely unpleasant. It took an hour to put on (and four hours to apply the prosthetics); and it had to be constantly smeared with goo to give it a liquid organic feel. Grace also had to wear fangs, which bruised his gums.
It was considered at one point to split the movie into two films.
One of the sounds used for Venom is of a Tasmanian Devil.
In a fight scene where Spider-Man punches through Sandman's chest, congenital amputee boxer Baxter Humby took Tobey Maguire's place in filming the scene. Humby, who was born without his right hand, helped deliver the intended effect of punching through Sandman's chest.
Originally, Dylan Baker's Curt Connors was meant to mutate into the Lizard and become the main villain for this film. There is a lizard skeleton in Dr. Connors' laboratory that foreshadows this metamorphosis. Another hint is the fact that his right arm is missing: in the comics he tried to restore it using reptile DNA, which led to his transformation. The Lizard story was filmed, with Rhys Ifans in place of Baker, for the reboot movie The Amazing Spider-Man.
Sam Raimi and Tobey Maguire were the driving forces that got Sandman into this film. During press interviews for the first two Spider-Man films, Raimi and Maguire repeatedly mentioned Sandman as a villain they would like to see in the third film.
The character of Eddie Brock/Venom, as portrayed in this film, is an amalgamation of his "Amazing Spider-Man" (an obsessive journalist) and "Ultimate" (a skinny young man with a crush on Gwen Stacy) versions. This was done to present Eddie Brock as a shadowy reflection of Peter Parker (which shows that Peter Parker, when affected by the symbiote, starts to act like Eddie).
Elisha Cuthbert and Scarlett Johansson were both considered for the role of Gwen Stacy.
Venom is never referred to as Venom. Sandman is only called Sandman once - during a newscast sequence near the film's climax. New Goblin is never called New Goblin - the closest this comes to happen is Peter calling him "Goblin Jr."
Real sand was used for Sandman, except when characters were being buried or covered in sand. Since real sand would have been a possible hazard for such scenes, ground up corncobs were used instead, and provided a great snack for the cast and crew.
It took three years to create the visual effects required to portray the Sandman's powers. To understand the dynamics of sand, various experiments were conducted with sand (launching sand at stunt men, splashing the stuff around and pouring it over ledges). Sand sculptors were also consulted for advice.
Both Topher Grace and Thomas Haden Church confessed that when they were unceremoniously invited to meetings at Sony, they had no idea they would be auditioning for this film.
Harry's lab contains his father's Green Goblin mask, as well as a gold "Hobgoblin" mask from the comics.
Over 1000 people worked on the film, some of them putting in the 8000 hours needed to construct the 40 Spider-Man suits and others writing complicated CGI software.
The first shot of the Sandman forming took roughly 6 months to create.
When the symbiote attaches to Peter's motorcycle license plate, it takes on the shape of a V (for Venom).
Reportedly an early draft had John Jameson, the astronaut from Spider-Man 2, returning from a space mission with the symbiote as a stowaway. To save time and money, this was eliminated in favor of having the meteorite just happen to land next to Peter Parker.
During one of the scenes in Jameson's office, a newspaper in the background says "Doc Ock Still at Large".
The font of Venom's web message is the same font used for the title of the comic, Sensational Spider-Man.
To prepare for his role as the Sandman, Thomas Haden Church worked out for 16 months, losing ten pounds of fat and gaining 28 pounds of muscle. He based his performance on misunderstood monsters, like the Golem from The Golem (1920), Frankenstein (1931)'s monster, and King Kong (1933).
In the comics, the symbiote was a flowing sentient liquid ooze. Sam Raimi was very clear on the film's portrayal of the symbiote: he wanted it to have character, but not to resemble a spider or octopus. As portrayed in the film, it possesses a webbing form (it was composed of many separate CGI threads) that gives it a sense of life and an appearance of gripping onto someone's body.
Ground corn was used as sand because it reflected well on camera.
The film's translation in Russia is "Spider-Man 3: Enemy in the Reflection"
Partial scenes, where Spider-Man is hanging from the back of an armored car, were filmed in downtown Cleveland, Ohio, due to high shooting costs in New York City.
According to Bryce Dallas Howard on the DVD commentary, the actor who plays the photographer during the crane accident scene performed magic for her at a birthday party when she was in the second grade.
Over 600 latex "web" balloons for the rally scene were hand-painted with a Sharpie marker.
The film's visual effects designer, Scott Stokdyk, created a miniature of a skyscraper section at 1/16th scale, instead of using CGI, to save time and costs, and so that damage done to the building could be portrayed realistically.
Originally, director Sam Raimi vehemently opposed having Venom as a villain in the film, claiming he hated Venom's "lack of humanity," but Marvel producer Avi Arad convinced him to include the character, explaining that Venom had a strong worldwide following. Raimi eventually came to appreciate the character, based on writer Alvin Sargent's script and actor Topher Grace's performance. However, to keep Venom's appearance a secret, he claimed during the film's casting and production that he hated the character, and had no intention of including the character in this film or any subsequent sequels. To make amends, he then treated the audience at the 22 July 2006 San Diego Comic-Con to the first public images of Venom in the film, albeit with unfinished special effects.
Thomas Haden Church was offered the role of Sandman on the strength of his performance in Sideways. He accepted the part despite the fact that there was no script.
Spider-Man 3 (2007)
PG-13 | 2h 19min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi | 4 May 2007 (USA)
A strange black entity from another world bonds with Peter Parker and causes inner turmoil as he contends with new villains, temptations, and revenge.
Director: Sam Raimi
Writers: Sam Raimi (screenplay), Ivan Raimi (screenplay)
Stars: Tobey Maguire, Kirsten Dunst, Topher Grace