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Andrew Garfield never got a fair shot at being Spider-Man, which is especially heartbreaking when you consider he’s been a major fan of the character since he was a kid.
The British actor took over the iconic role from Tobey Maguire when Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man 4 fell through. Sony opted to reboot Spidey, taking him back to high school for a new set of adventures that threw out everything that came before.
2011’s The Amazing Spider-Man was a solid reboot that reimagined Peter Parker as a younger webhead struggling with the mysterious death of his parents and a vast conspiracy stemming from a company called Oscorp. Andrew Garfield was an excellent Spidey, and was joined by the equally excellent Emma Stone as Gwen Stacy. That first film asked some interesting questions, and set up a promising future.
And then it all went wrong. The Amazing Spider-Man 2 is not a good movie. Sony, dazzled by the success of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, attempted to set up several different spinoff movies and sequels. The result was an incoherent mess of a movie that featured a random assortment of plotlines and characters that simply came and went as the story demanded it. It did so badly, in fact, that Garfield’s version of the character was abandoned, and Tom Holland was drafted in to play Spider-Man in the MCU as the result of a deal between Marvel and Sony.
As glad as I am Spidey finally ended up in the MCU, it does break my heart that it happened at the expense of Garfield. He was undoubtedly one of the only redeeming aspects of The Amazing Spider-Man movies, and deserved better. In a recent interview, he spoke a little more about the “heartbreaking” experience of playing the character.
“I got my heart broken a little bit,” Garfield told The Guardian in a recent interview. “I went from being a naive boy to growing up…How could I ever imagine that it was going to be a pure experience?”
He added that realising comic book movies are driven by money first and passion for the source material second stung. “There are millions of dollars at stake and that’s what guides the ship,” he said. “It was a big awakening and it hurt.
“Comic-Con in San Diego is full of grown men and women still in touch with that pure thing the character meant to them. “[But] you add in market forces and test groups and suddenly the focus is less on the soul of it and more on ensuring we make as much money as possible.
“And I found that – find that – heartbreaking in all matters of the culture. Money is the thing that has corrupted all of us and led to the terrible ecological collapse that we are all about to die under.”
Andrew Garfield: you deserved so much more.
Featured Image Credit: Sony
Topics: Spider Man
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