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September 22, 2014

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Is it Jon Secada vs. ‘Spider-Man’ the musical at Wynn Las Vegas?

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Sara Krulwich/The New York Times

Spider-Man appears during the musical “Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark” at Foxwoods Theater in New York on Thursday, June 2, 2011.

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Jon Secada arrives at the "Veronic Voices" premiere at Bally's on Friday, June 28, 2013.

Is it singer Jon Secada vs. “Spider-Man” the musical? Interesting behind-the-scenes Wicked Whispers & Racy Rumors surround Jon Secada’s showcase at Steve Wynn’s Encore Theater in Wynn Las Vegas on Thursday afternoon.

When news first leaked about Jon’s 2014 residency here, even I leapt to the conclusion that with rehearsals and a preview at the Wynn that the show would fill the spot left vacant by Garth Brooks’ new worldwide tour plans.

Not so per rumors that Steve is just lending his theater to Jon and producer Bill Edwards to interest rival hotels in negotiating for its proposed Strip run. Now why would Steve not book it into his venue?

It appears that the moment the hotel tycoon scrapped his ambitious plans this fall for his real-magic project “Fun House” after investing $7 million, as we’ve reported, he began talks with Broadway producers of the over-the-top “Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark” that cost $75 million and is the most expensive New York theatrical production in history.

I can safely confirm Steve’s “very serious interest” in moving the high-flying spectacular to open in his Encore Theater in a year, but nothing is apparently yet signed and sealed. He’s prepared to financially back its revamped version, adding incredible, stunning Las Vegas elements to the extravaganza.

With those plans moving along at a rapid pace and his approval of construction additions necessary to the theater, it simply didn’t permit Jon’s showcase to extend into a permanent home there. It will now wind up elsewhere competing in a friendly duel against “Spider-Man.”

Spiderman, inspired by more than 40 years of Marvel comic books, features music and lyrics by 22-time Grammy Award winners Bono and The Edge of U2. Its final Broadway performance is Jan. 4 .

Producer Jeremiah J. Harris has confirmed the Las Vegas discussions: “It will be very similar to New York but obviously sculpted for the Las Vegas market. The sets, costumes and special-effects technology would be used in the Las Vegas production.”

It’s director on the Strip will be Philip William McKinley, who stepped in to replace original director Julie Taymor, who is known to Las Vegas audiences for “The Lion King” formerly at Mandalay Bay.

Robin Leach has been a journalist for more than 50 years and has spent the past decade giving readers the inside scoop on Las Vegas, the world’s premier platinum playground.

Follow Robin Leach on Twitter at Twitter.com/Robin_Leach.

Follow Vegas DeLuxe on Twitter at Twitter.com/vegasdeluxe.

Follow Sun A&E Senior Editor Don Chareunsy on Twitter at Twitter.com/VDLXEditorDon.

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