I should start off with some disclaimers. I was a fan of the last live action spiderman movies; specifically the first and second (like everyone else I choose not to acknowledge the third.) Tobey Maguire did a good job and those first two movies had a spectacular plot with amazing characters undergoing ultimate conflict (see what I did there?) That's not to say the movies didn't have their flaws, but as far as the live action movies proceeded I believe they captured the heart and essence that is Spiderman. Of course, that was derailed at the release of the third movie, and though a fourth was talked about for a long time with Sam Raimi, Kirsten Dunst, and Maguire all set to return - it was eventually canned and talk of a reboot immediately began to circulate.
People have been raising the obvious questions: "Why?" "Isn't it too soon to reboot?" "Do we really need to go back to high school with this?"
Despite the relative failure of the third spiderman film, or perhaps because of it, there are many naysayers out there who just don't believe in rebooting a franchise that isn't even a decade old. I can see their point. Then there's the fact that they're completely starting from the ground up. Besides the obvious ties to the comic book that each movie is inherently based off of, these will be two different franchises, most likely in feel and in story. To top it all off, they've chosen a british actor to become the friendly neighborhood spidey, who up until last year was basically unknown. There's outrage amongst the fans - both of the films and of the comics - and there's a lot of skepticism going into a movie before a single frame has been seen.
Well I'm here to say that I'm not one of those people. First off, they're making the movie and there's nothing we can do about it. Second, I loved Spiderman growing up (mostly off the cartoons) and I can't think of a reason to stop now. Third, and this is the one that matters most, Andrew Garfield has me convinced.
Andrew Garfield as Spiderman
Say what you want about the up-and-coming actor, whether you liked him or not in The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus or last year's (I'm calling Best Picture) The Social Network, the boy has spirit. A lot of people vied for the role of Peter Parker when this movie was announced, but while people started calling catastrophe from the sidelines while decisions were being made, Garfield was doing press for a movie that would ultimately get him nominated for a Golden Globe. This guy could have chosen any role he wanted, especially when you see his performance in the much overlooked Never Let Me Go, but there's one that he just couldn't get out of his head. Unfortunately, choosing the role meant propelling him from 'nobody' to 'blockbuster hero' amongst the general populace, should the movie actually do well with audiences and at the box office. His fame would shoot up tremendously. Would he be able to handle it?
More importantly, with the growing pressure of critics and fans alike, condemning him from the start, would he be willing to put his career on the line?
That's a lot to consider...
and here is where I start to admire Andrew Garfield.
In every interview I've read with him since his casting in the movie, I can't help but smile at the child-like passion that seems to encompass his every word. Though he had the weight of an entire nation pressing on him to make the right choice, there is only one voice he could never shut out: that of his adolescent self.
I have been waiting for this phone call for 24 years, for someone to call me up and say, “Hey, we want you to pretend to be a character that you’ve always wanted to be all your life, and we’re going to do it with cool cameras and cool effects and you’re going to feel like you’re swinging through NYC. Do you want to do that?” [laughs] “Let me just consult with my seven-year old self and see what he thinks…” So my seven-year-old self started screaming in my soul and saying, This is what we’ve been waiting for. Like every young boy who feels stronger on the inside than they look on the outside, any skinny boy basically who wishes their muscles matched their sense of injustice, God, it’s just the stuff that dreams are made of, for sure. It’s a true fucking honor to be part of this symbol that I actually think is a very important symbol and it’s meant a great deal to me, and it continues to mean something to people. So yeah, I feel like I’ve been preparing for it for a while. Ever since Halloween when I was four years old and I wore my first Spider-Man costume. [via SlashFilm.com]
The man shut out all his worries, convictions, and the naysayers. Here is a guy that, as an amazing actor, decided that this is a once in a lifetime opportunity. He realized that you can't just say 'no' to this. He got excited, and in turn I was excited for him. No matter what the outcome of the movie, because when it comes down to it these things are just entertainment, he wanted to fulfill his dream, and as a fellow actor, I can't say that I would have made any different a decision. (It's still my dream to play Dick Grayson aka Robin/Nightwing.) He's having the time of his life right now, and I can't blame him.
I couldn't gag the 5-year-old self inside of me. I said, 'What should we do?' And he was like 'DO IT! DO IT! DO IT! DO IT! Are you F***ing kidding me? It's Spider-Man!' [via DETAILS]
You see that enthusiasm? It rubs off on me. This is where Andrew Garfield has me convinced. This is why, no matter what idiotic moves they decide to make with this upcoming reboot (though I have much faith in Webb), I will be there on opening night supporting Andrew in any way possible.
So what about you: Are you excited about Andrew Garfield playing your friendly neighborhood spider? What are your thoughts on the upcoming reboot? Honestly, would you have been able to say no if they offered you the role?
Mattias is an actor, writer, filmmaker, and editor currently living in Los Angeles, CA. He often writes about his observations about life, the human condition, spirituality, and relationships. He also enjoys writing about movies, pop culture, formula one, and current events. Often these writings are 'initial thoughts' and un-edited, as authentic as possible, and should be considered opinions. If you're interested in commenting on his work, or continuing the conversation, you should consider following him on Twitter or share an article on social media, where he would love to engage even further. Consider subscribing via RSS for more.