Andrew Garfield Discusses Spider-Man Return & ‘No Way Home’ Nostalgia
Love him or hate him, there’s no denying that Andrew Garfield is a very likable man. After pulling at our heartstrings during Spider-Man: No Way Home, the 38-year old actor broke his silence with an exclusive interview for Variety.
Along with some fun asides, Garfield opened up about his covert return to the franchise, hanging out with his fellow Spider-Men, tying up his character’s narrative, and potentially returning as the friendly neighborhood Spider-Man.
Andrew Garfield and No Way Home
“The pitch was really, really enticing,” shared Garfield. “I wasn’t expecting to ever have a conversation again about potentially playing Peter Parker. I felt very excited just to be a fan again. But I got this call from Amy Pascal and Kevin Feige and Jon Watts with this idea. It was immediately undeniable.”
For Garfield, the ‘middle brother’ between Tobey MacGuire and Tom Holland’s versions, the film felt ‘incredibly spiritual, even ‘trippy’ to be a part of.’ He shared how his incarnation of Spider-Man was isolated, lonely – especially held back by the loss of his partner, Gwen Stacy (Emma Stone).
“What happens when that aloneness gets blasted open, and you come to realize that you’ve never been alone and there are other brothers going through the exact same thing?”
Sharing The Screen With His Spider-Bros
For both MacGuire and Garfield, the goal was to achieve more than just a ‘Hi! Bye!’ style cameo, that lent nothing to the story or its characters. Across two weeks of shooting, Garfield managed to lend a powerful narrative conclusion to his tragic character arc – a change that’s brought many fans around and revived an interest in the Amazing Spider-Man films.
One moment, in particular, is when Garfield’s Spider-Man saves Zendaya’s MJ – only to break down in tears.
“My Spider-Man got to save his younger brother’s romantic relationship, potentially. And to heal the most traumatic moment of his own life through doing it for his younger brother. Making sure that he didn’t have the same fate, there’s something cosmically beautiful about that.”
It isn’t all about on-screen setpieces, however. “I think the first time we were all in the suit together,” Garfield continues, “it was hilarious because it’s like just three ordinary dudes who were just actors just hanging out.” The three actors – spread out across a span of two decades in age – managed to become fast friends, bonding over their unique challenges and experiences as Peter Parker and Spider-Man alike.
“Tom was jealous because I have little zippers in my suit that I can get my hands out of very easily. To work his phone, he had to use his nose because he couldn’t access his hands. We would have deeper conversations, too, and talk about our experiences with the character.”
Garfield also takes a moment to reference the moment in the film where he shares his love for both Spider-Bros Holland and MacGuire. He may not be the most popular Spidey, but he’s sure got heart.
Redemption and Possible Returns?
There’s no beating around the bush – while MacGuire’s original live-action Spider-Man set the mold for modern superhero films and Holland’s fit perfectly into a precision-designed cinematic universe, Garfield’s films remain a bit, well… unmemorable.
Some point at weak fight choreography. Others think that the Amazing films had subpar plotlines, or didn’t break the mold too much. Personally? I think Garfield was a great, slightly darker take on the character – although his version of Peter Parker is a far cry from the geeky, awkward high-schooler. He’s just a little… too handsome and charismatic. Pity.
That said, getting to revisit and recontextualize the character was something Garfield took up in earnest. “I’m just really, really grateful that I got to tie up some loose ends for the Peter that I was playing,” he shared. “There were so many unanswered questions for my Peter, where we left it. I got to step back in and get some healing for him.”
“It was joyful, and a feeling of closure for me.”
With the franchise currently bookended, several fans have been wondering if we’ll see either MacGuire or Garfield reprise their roles in spinoffs – and the latter is certainly hopeful.
“Definitely open to something if it felt right,” Garfield said regarding a return to the character. “Peter and Spider-Man, those characters are all about service, to the greater good and the many. I would try to borrow Peter Parker’s ethical framework in that, if there was an opportunity to step back in and tell more of that story, I would have to feel very sure and certain in myself.”
Apart from Spider-Man: No Way Home, Andrew Garfield has also appeared in Tick, Tick … Boom last year – an exciting drama musical for Netflix:
With a great performance across both films, we’re eager to see what the talented actor has to show in 2022.
(Image Sources: Sony Pictures Entertainment, Marvel Studios, Netflix, Disney)