Wonder No more! A rare Tuesday post here on Spideydude, but it’s an interesting story. Ron Frenz posted a series of photos on his Facebook Page, where he discussed promotional Material that Marvel did in the 80s.
Back in the day, one of the coolest promotions Marvel sponsored for the whole “Spider-man has a new black costume” thing was having Spidey brought to life by actor/stuntman Mr. Scott Leva!
Mr. Leva was the ONLY Spider-man actor,to my knowledge,to wear and promote the black costume and what a job he did! He was (and still is, I’m sure) a consummate professional, as personable as you would expect from your Friendly Neighborhood Wall-Crawler and a heck of a lot of fun to hang out with at cons!
His physical prowess made it possible for him to convince any “Doubting Thomas” that he was, indeed, meeting the Genuine Article!
The fact that he could have (and almost did) play Peter Parker as well just made Scott the total package! He even portrayed the Web-Spinner (and his clone!) on several covers for Marvel Comics!
Since I was a fortunate freelancer who was pencilling one of Spidey’s titles back then, Scott asked me to execute a few illustrations to hopefully help him lock down the Peter Parker role in the possible Spider-man movie productions of the time! It was my pleasure!
Well, in the post itself a picture was produced, this time, referencing the Web 125/Spectacular 225 issues that had the infamous Holodisks.
It was for the hologram covers from 1995. I directed the shoot in Los Angeles. Scott had to begin and end his n the exact same pose while the turntable revolved.
Not just that, but the holograms were shot with a circa 1925 silent film camera because it has better frame registration than any newer cameras.
They were cool, but you had to look at them under a specific kind of light and spin them around slowly. The coolness wasn’t apparent at just a glance at the cover on the rack.
Spidey himself jumped in:
That was one of my favorite gigs for Marvel. Danny, Ron, Tom, and Stan the Man himself, always made me feel like I was part of the Marvel bullpen. Very fond and happy memories.
Naturally, I felt super cool talking to these guys.
I did ask about the pen lights:
Zach: If I remember correctly, they had pen lights that were sold with them.
Danny Fingeroth: I think that was done store-by-store. I don’t think Marvel was officially selling penlights.
I double checked Life of Reilly, part 8.
[ GLENN’S COMMENTS : The holodisks were yet another in a long line of gimmick covers that were all the rage back then. We had just done a gimmick cover for AMAZING SPIDER-MAN #400 that did not turn out very well, and these holodisks were not much of an improvement. They looked GREAT in the prototype stage, but when we got the final versions, it was clear that you needed to view them under a light that was about as powerful as the sun to really get the full effect of the 3-D live action. Strike two! ]
So… Maybe I was dreaming?
Anyway. A fun story, by a great guy. Thanks Ron!
Author: Zach Joiner
Zach started the website Spidey-dude.com back in 1998. Back then it was a little geocities-type site, before moving on to the spdieydude.com domain in 2001. In 2012, he migrated the site to its current home.
In 2006, he started Podcasting with Brad Douglas’ Spider-Man Crawl Space, where he has more or less remained to this day.
In 2009, he was approached by Joshua Lapin-Bertone to launch a new show called Clone Saga Chronicles, which is still running to this day. Over the years he recruited new talent to the show, and helped shepherd two other shows: Mayday Mondays and Spectacular Radio which both launched in 2014. He is a father to a lovely young daughter, who he looks to indoctrinate, er, share his passion for Spidey and Superheroes.