|OLIVER J. CROOMS IV|
|Charlotte film producer Oliver J. Crooms IV, founder of the Carolina Film Festival, stars in the fan short “Spider-Man Legacy” shot in Charlotte with a cast from North Carolina.|
Spider-Man is back, but this time in the streets of Charlotte.
Oliver J. Crooms IV, film producer and founder of the Carolina Film Festival, will release his first installment of a trilogy of Spider-Man fan shorts later this month. The movie, “Spider-Man Legacy,” introduces the classic hero we all know and love, but with a new twist. Crooms introduces fans to a humanized version of the character and his fight against organized crime.
The short will premiere this month on YouTube and other free social media platforms.
Crooms co-wrote and produced the film as well as stars like Peter Parker / Spider-Man.
Crooms first dabbled in comedy at a friend’s son’s birthday party in 2001. At first, he was reluctant when asked to dress up as Spider-Man, but is eventually fell in love with the character’s energy. When he started getting hired for more parties around Charlotte and even Virginia, he decided to start an Instagram page. The page included pictures that he said would empower the children. From there, the idea eventually turned from a small Instagram account into a real movie.
Crooms employed a cast made up entirely of actors from North Carolina.
“Spider Man is traditionally a New York character, but I wanted to make it our own interpretation,” he said. “I wanted to select as many talented people as possible in North Carolina and make Charlotte the hub.”
Crooms took his passion for Spider-Man and built his own unique story around the character. Several Spider-Man movies already exist in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but it felt like there were still other versions of the story to be told.
“We have scenes with Spider-Man actually fighting at night,” Crooms said. “Normally it rocks in broad daylight, but we have it there while it’s raining. It’s a bit gritty and takes on a whole new interpretation. I want people to be impressed that we’ve found a new way to present the character that even the comics haven’t addressed.
The film will appeal to all ages, from children to older adults, and is approximately 20 minutes long. Crooms hopes to make it into a two- or three-part series and plans to host a screening in March 2022 with guest speakers and a Q&A opportunity from the audience. The short film was even featured on IMDb’s website.
“I hope this establishes me in the film world both locally and beyond. I have a gift that I cultivate, ”he said. “I have an eye and work ethic to produce and write films and would love to tap more into the world of acting, so hopefully this will give me the visibility I need to get there.”