Andrew Garfield Explains How He Failed As Spider-Man
I was actually a big fan of what Andrew Garfield brought to the role of Peter Parker/Spider-Man in Marc Webb's Amazing Spider-Man films, but the actor feels like he could have done more. Garfield has been making the press rounds recently and he's been talking a lot about what it was like to play the web-slinger, and it doesn't sound like it wasn't a very fun time for him.
As you know, Garfield is a huge fan of Spider-Man, and he was excited as hell to play him on the big screen. It was a dream come true, but that dream seemed to crash and burn. In an interview with Zaki’s Corner, the actor was asked what he learned from being Spider-Man, and this was his response:
"Well, nothing, because I was never Spider-Man. Because Spider-Man’s a fictional character. He’s not real. [laughs] You know what’s funny, to give you the vulnerable answer, I thought I was going to be Spider-Man, you know? I went into it going...ego shit came in. It’s like, “Okay, here it is. I’m f***ing Spider-Man. I f***ing made it.” All that shit. [laughs] I didn’t actually make it. I was never Spider-Man.
"I was the actor that I am. The person that I am. Struggling with trying to match up with something that I’d elevated so high in my mind. Elevated beyond what I could attain, what I could achieve. The great thing is, that’s what Peter Parker was doing as well. Peter Parker created this symbol that he couldn’t live up to. It was never enough. He never felt enough, and I never felt enough. I never felt like I was able to do enough. And I couldn’t rescue those films...even though I didn’t sleep. [laughs]
"And I wanted to...not to say that I needed to rescue those films, but I couldn’t make them as deep and soulful and...life-giving as I could ever dream. And I’m never gonna be able to do that, with any film. It was especially difficult in that situation because...well, just because. And it was especially important because that character has always meant so much to me, and you saw that if you saw the Comic Con thing, which, thank you for reminding me about that."
The guy obviously had a vision for those movies, but it sounds like he was in a situation where he couldn't really do anything. It's crazy he actually lost sleep over it. In a separate interview with The Playlist, Garfield spoke about the pressures of being involved with such a big project.
"The pressure to get it right, to please everyone… it's not going to happen...You end up pleasing no one, or everyone just a little bit. Like, ‘Eh, that was good.’ [The films are] mass-marketed, like ‘We want 50-year-old white men to love it, gay teenagers to love it, bigot homophobes in Middle America to love it, 11-year-old girls to love it.’ That's canning Coke."
Damn! Well, you can't say that Garfield never really told us how he really feels. He went on to share how he felt after he was dropped from the franchise, saying:
"So that aspect of it was a bummer. Especially for the group of us trying to infuse it with soul, trying to make it unique, something that was worth the price of entry. It was about authenticity, flavor, and truth, but at the same time, I understand people want to make a lot of money, and they're going to spend a lot of money so the playpen can be as big as it was. I can't live that way; it sounds like a prison, to be honest, living within those expectations."
His bad experience with Spider-Man isn't going to stop him from jumping on board another big franchise, though. He says that he's up for the challenge and that he's "not going to shy away from something that a lot of people are going to see. Fuck it, bring it on, life's short."
I think Garfield is a great young actor who has a long career ahead of him. It sucks that his Spider-Man films went down the road they did and that it was hard for him. At least he did the best he could under the circumstances.