Why Playing Spider-Man Was A Struggle, According To Andrew Garfield


Even though Tom Holland is the Marvel Cinematic Universe's Spider-Man, it wasn't that long ago that we were watching Andrew Garfield's iteration of the Web-Slinger in action on the big screen. While Garfield was enthusiastic about getting to play one of pop culture's most famous superheroes when promoting The Amazing Spider-Man and its sequel, over the last year, the actor's revealed about how he's glad that weight is off his shoulders now. In fact, it turns out the experience of playing Spider-Man wasn't as enjoyable as he previously recalled.

While speaking to The Wrap, Andrew Garfield mentioned how coming off of The Social Network and Never Let Me Go, he found himself struggling playing the Marvel superhero due to the different values that came with playing a guy in tights who spins webs and beats up bank robbers. As he put it:

[The role brought] a different set of values and a different hierarchy of priorities. And we all know what those are. I struggled with that. I wasn't having the total experience that I remembered having.

Andrew Garfield added that he didn't have this same kind of "total experience" playing Spider-Man that he did appearing in The Social Network, and he eventually realized that he may have wasted that "level of serious commitment" on a superhero. So even though it wasn't Garfield's choice to stop playing Spider-Man, it worked out for the best, especially since he also admitted in 2015 that he never truly felt like he succeeded in playing Spider-Man effectively.

Before The Amazing Spider-Man 2 was released in theaters, Sony had planned to build a Spider-Man cinematic universe, which would have included Sinister Six and Venom spinoffs. Had everything gone according to plan, Garfield would still be playing Spider-Man right now, but due to The Amazing Spider-Man 2 underperforming, Marvel and Sony eventually joined forces in early 2015 to reboot Spider-Man yet again, but this time, he would be part of the MCU. A little over a year later, Tom Holland debuted as Spidey in Captain America: Civil War, and he'll reprise the Wall-Crawler next year in Spider-Man: Homecoming.

As for Andrew Garfield, it sounds like he's found his acting groove again with his drama projects. He co-starred alongside Michael Shannon last year in 99 Homes, and he appeared this year in Mel Gibson's Hacksaw Ridge and Martin Scorsese's Silence. His performance as Desmond Doss in the former movie earned him a Golden Globe nomination earlier this month, while he's reportedly in nearly every scene of the latter movie as Sebastião Rodrigues.

Both Hacksaw Ridge and Silence are currently playing in theaters, so check out one of both of them if you want to enjoy some of Andrew Garfield's post-Spider-Man work.

Adam Holmes
Senior Content Producer

Connoisseur of Marvel, DC, Star Wars, John Wick, MonsterVerse and Doctor Who lore. He's aware he looks like Harry Potter and Clark Kent.