In the dark period between Sam Raimi's Spider-Man 3 and Marc Webb's The Amazing Spider-Man, Sony needed a savior. Their shining star had been tarnished by an overcrowded trilogy capper, and they wanted a fresh start. Similar to the chow line that marched through Han Solo auditions, everyone and their brother supposedly tried out for Peter Parker, with the role eventually going to Andrew Garfield. Now, Miles Teller explains why he's glad he didn't get the part, even though he'd go on to play a different Marvel superhero in time. Teller says:
I wasn't starving to be a superhero. Although at the time---it was a couple of years ago---if you're a young man in this business, a part of you is saying, 'I need to get a Marvel project; I need to be a superhero,' because you see all these actors you respect being put in that world. I would not have wanted to be Spider-Man because I wouldn't want the whole thing riding on my shoulders. I enjoyed the ensemble element of Fantastic Four. I wouldn't wish what happened to us on another movie. It's tough, because there are such high expectations. Comic books mean so much to a lot of people.
Miles Teller is out promoting his role in the Todd Phillips comedy War Dogs (which our own Eric Eisenberg loved, BTW), but journalists are always going to be interested in rehashing his role as Reed Richards in the deeply flawed Fantastic Four. And he's dead on about several aspects of the industry in this quote that he gave to Playboy. There was a stretch -- and I'm not sure that it's over just yet -- where up-and-coming young actors felt compelled to join some sort of major film franchise, comic book or otherwise, because it: gets your name on a global scale; provides job security (thanks to sequels and spinoffs); and largely boosts the star power of a potential A-lister.
At the same time, these gambles don't always pay off, as Miles Teller knows all too well. He rolled the dice on Fantastic Four, hiding in an ensemble (as he points out), but it wasn't so much cushion that it protected him fully from the shadow of superhero stink that tainted the origin story. Did it ruin Teller? Not hardly. He still has credits like Whiplash to his name (a masterpiece), and is getting good reviews for War Dogs. He'll likely be fine.
Now, look what happened to Andrew Garfield, and imagine if that had been Teller. Garfield did his best in two Spider-Man movies, but fans didn't warm up enough to his interpretation of Peter Parker, and so -- after two Amazing Spider-Man movies -- the series triggered another reboot. Tom Holland, who appeared in Captain America: Civil War, will headline his own Spider-Man: Homecoming in 2017.
What do you think? Would Miles Teller have made a good Spider-Man? Would the Amazing series have been more successful if Teller had played Peter instead of Andrew Garfield? Weigh in below.