Koepp. The Director.Spider-Man has been the rare gift that keeps on giving- both to fans and to its studio, Sony Pictures. So far, it’s working for everyone and Sony’s doing their damndest to keep it that way.

Riding the buzz train that will be Spider-Man 3, word on both Sycamore and Cherry Lane- i.e.- the streets (according to a “reliable source”-like friend of Superhero Hype!) is that David Koepp is in talks with Sony (Columbia to be exact) to write Spider-Man 4. Not surprising, as Mr. Koepp not only wrote the screenplay for the first Spider-Man and just keeps tucking blockbusters into his back pocket with stuff like Mission: Impossible, War of the Worlds, Jurassic Park and Indiana Jones 4. Stuffing, you know, when he’s not being eaten by rampaging carnivors on the streets of San Diego.

According to the source, Sony’s neck has been tingling since early screenings of Spiderman 3 and its universal geekgasm has sprayed gooey, webby love all over the sequel at the recent CES (Consumer Electronics Show) in Vegas. While Koepp isn’t a lock, the studio and writer are rumored to be substantially discussing.

Either way, this means Sony is putting money on the table
with a plan to ramp up a fourth one, despite Raimi and the original casts possible exit with the latest installment. And why not? Combined, Spider-Man and Spider-Man 2 have packed summer theaters and rung up a combined bill most third world countries would go to war over. $1.6 billion theatrically to be exact. With 3 just around the corner and sure to end its run well over $500 million, is it any wonder Sony’s trying to keep that bottle of lightning firing away on the shelf?

We all know the answer to that one.