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Sam Raimi Recalls Nearly Drowning Tobey Maguire in Spider-Man

The infamous upside-down kiss from 2002's Spider-Man was featured on Rotten Tomatoes' 21 Most Memorable Moments. However, the film's director, Sam Raimi, and its stunt coordinator, Jeff Habberstad, went into detail about the somewhat grueling process of shooting that scene.

As Habberstad described, large drops of cold water poured over Tobey Maguire and Kirsten Dunst each time the scene was set up, with each take lasting several minutes. To make matters worse, Maguire could barely breathe during the scene.

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"When he was doing the scene, I remember the water was falling down into his upside down nostrils, so he was kind of drowning," Raimi said. "But it was a kissing scene. So, he had to pretend like it was a pleasant, sweet moment for him, when in fact, he was semi-drowning."

Spider-Man's mask also presented some technical difficulties, as it wouldn't really pull up and down. This meant Dunst had to do a bit of "slight-of-hand" to make it seem as if she were pulling down the mask. Nevertheless, Raimi credits the acting skills of Maguire and Dunst for making these setbacks unnoticeable.

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Spider-Man has a score of 90% on Rotten Tomatoes and is credited with revitalizing the superhero genre. It remains the highest-grossing of all Spider-Man films, beating out Spider-Man: HomecomingThe Amazing Spider-Man and Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse. 

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