Tobey Maguire reinvented the onscreen superhero in the original Spider-Man trilogy, making his Peter Parker a desperately romantic noble dweeb with a firm moral core.…
Credit: Jaimie Trueblood/Columbia

Uneasy lies the head that wears a Spider-Man mask. Just ask Andrew Garfield, who took up the wall-crawler’s mantle for two much-hyped Amazing Spider-Man movies only to see the franchise sputter its way to yet another reboot.

Garfield’s performance as Peter Parker/Spidey and chemistry with Emma Stone were widely regarded as bright spots of the ASM movies, but he recently spoke to Indiewire about the frustrations and creative challenges he experienced as a cog in the superhero-movie machine.

“The pressure to get it right, to please everyone … it’s not going to happen,” Garfield said. “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.”

Garfield said he and his collaborators tried to infuse the Amazing movies with “soul” and “authenticity,” but he also acknowledged the underlying financial imperative: “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.”

Although Garfield’s run as Spider-Man didn’t go as planned, he won’t make it a point to avoid high-profile projects in the future. “I was well up for the challenge, and I still am,” he said. “I’m not going to shy away from something that a lot of people are going to see.”

Garfield has also given his stamp of approval to his Spider-Man successor, Tom Holland. He recently told Entertainment Tonight that Holland is “a really, really great actor.”

Read more of what Garfield had to say about ASM at Indiewire.

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The Amazing Spider-Man
  • Movie
  • Marc Webb