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Bono talks of struggles, triumphs of 'Spider-Man'

Bono is seen backstage at the

Bono is seen backstage at the "American Idol" finale in Los Angeles. (May 25, 2011) Credit: AP

With the Broadway premiere of the beleaguered "Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark" finally in sight, Bono and The Edge, who wrote the music and lyrics for the musical, were in a jovial mood as they previewed songs from the accompanying soundtrack.

"It's weird to be a $70 million underdog," U2 frontman Bono joked Thursday night before a performance of the play at Foxwoods Theatre.

The musical — the most expensive in Broadway history — was supposed to open last year. Years in the making, it was one of the most anticipated productions to reach Broadway. But there were injuries, creative problems and scathing early reviews during its seemingly endless preview stage.

The official opening was delayed several times, and Julie Taymor, the show's director and lead visionary, was ousted in March, though her name remains on the credits.

Speaking before a crowd of industry insiders in the theater's lobby, Bono hailed Taymor and called her a "card-carrying genius."

Bono said he and The Edge were privileged to work with Taymor, but he also suggested that she was so involved, perhaps she wasn't able to see some of the play's flaws.

"She's so involved with the details of her work and perhaps she got a little tired. ... She got so close to it perhaps in the last moments she couldn't see it," he said.

Later, Bono said he hoped that with the opening of the musical, people would focus more on the creative part of the production than its problems.

The Edge said working on "Spider-Man" was "an education."

"We're very proud of the songs," he said.

The soundtrack to the musical hits stores Tuesday, the same day as the official Broadway opening.

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