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Rise of the machine

'I, Robot' hopes to overcome Spidey

The shadow of “Spider-Man” hangs over all summer movies, but Fox execs at the July 6 preem for “I, Robot” expressed confidence that their sci-fi film can hold its own. As Tom Rothman reminded, “If you have a good movie, there’s room in the marketplace.”

The far from robotic crowd at the Westwood preem filled two theaters to capacity, then headed to the Hammer museum for more futuristic-revelry.

Even before “Spider-Man’s” record-breaking debut, Fox knew the sequel would extend far-reaching tentacles over the summer B.O.; the studio shifted its Isaac Asimov-inspired yarn — starring Mr. Independence Day himself, Will Smith — away from the holiday weekend to make room for Spidey. But, Hutch Parker said, “at a certain point, you’ve got to trust what you’ve got.”

He added: “We’re willing to walk into any storm.”

Helmer Alex Proyas called the timing, “fine by me,” noting he’d never had a summer movie before.

” ‘Spider-Man’ was an unstoppable behemoth, wasn’t it?” he said.

Also on hand: Fox’s Tony Sella, producer Jim Davis and Laurence Mark, pic’s James Cromwell and Shia LaBeouf, plus guests including Tom Cruise, Quincy Jones, Cedric the Entertainer and Angela Bassett.

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