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Andrew Garfield Explains Why Spider-Man Will Endure as an Acting Role


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Andrew Garfield explains why Spider-Man is the one superhero who will never lose his appeal for actors or audiences. Garfield was the second actor to tackle Spider-Man in the era of big-budget comic book movie epics, following in the footsteps of original Peter Parker Tobey Maguire.

Garfield’s tenure as Spider-Man infamously was not nearly as successful as Maguire’s however, as his two Amazing Spider-Man movies fell far short of the standard set by Sam Raimi in the three movies he directed. Undeterred by the failure of the Garfield films, Marvel quickly moved to reboot Spider-Man, bringing in Tom Holland to play the MCU version of the superhero. Holland’s Spider-Man appearances, beginning with Captain America: Civil War and then ramping up with the solo effort Spider-Man: Homecoming, quickly washed away the bad taste left by Garfield’s films. But though Holland definitely refreshed the character of Peter Parker (with some help from that unstoppable MCU machine), some have argued that Spider-Man fatigue is beginning to set in.

RELATED: Every Character Confirmed For MCU Spider-Man 3 (So Far)

One person who definitely does not agree that Spider-Man is starting to get old is Garfield himself. During a recent appearance on SiriusXM, Garfield was confronted with the issue of Spider-Man fatigue by host Andy Cohen and pushed back hard against the idea that a saturation point is being reached with the character, explaining why he believes Spider-Man has the kind of universal appeal that will never lose its power to captivate (via CinemaBlend):

I’m afraid I can’t co-sign that one with you. It’s like Hamlet, like you can never get enough Hamlets or Macbeths … I will vouch for the character for a second in the sense that it’s the only superhero where he’s covered head to toe. You don’t see skin color, you don’t see sexual orientation, you don’t see any of those things. Everyone can project themselves into the suit, and I think that’s why he’s probably the most beloved superhero universally, throughout every culture, throughout every race. … Yeah, I think so. I really do think so. And there’s also an ordinariness to Peter Parker that everyone can project themselves into as well.

The universality of Spider-Man was indeed conveyed most strongly not by one of the live-action Spider-Man films but rather by the animated Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, a movie that fully embraced the diverse array of possibilities afforded by the character. And contrary to what Cohen tried to say by slamming the recent profusion of Spider-Man films, all the evidence suggests that audiences are nowhere near getting sick of Peter Parker. Not only is there the huge box office for Holland’s Spider-Man films as proof that fans continue to enjoy the character, there’s also the intense crowd reaction to his being snapped out of existence in Avengers: Infinity War, and people's great joy when he was resurrected in Avengers: Endgame.

And anyway it’s a moot point whether some think Spider-Man is played out, as the character is getting another showcase in Spider-Man: No Way Home, which will be followed by a second Spider-Verse movie and a seemingly inevitable film in which he squares off against Venom. And who knows what other appearances Spider-Man may make in other MCU movies in the coming years. As Garfield astutely points out, Spider-Man is actually a perfect superhero character for an era in which diversity is everything, as anyone can don Spider-Man's mask and live out their dream of being a crime-fighting webslinger.

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