Garfield played Peter Parker/Spider-Man in two movies before Marvel/Sony reached a deal to share the movie rights to the character, and a collective decision was made to reboot the franchise again. Starting over with a teenaged Spider-Man meant Garfield, 33, was left out in the cold.
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Speaking to The Hollywood Reporter‘s Actor Roundtable – an excellent series of interviews which you should really check out – Garfield says he was left deeply frustrated by how Sony squandered the potential of the character. In response to Dev Patel’s comment about his own bad experience on The Last Airbender, Garfield said:
“I love what you just said, that you were looking at a stranger and feeling like you were perpetuating something that’s toxic and something that’s shallow and something that has no depth, no matter how much depth was attempted. Spider-Man was my favourite superhero, my first superhero costume when I was a 3-year-old at Halloween.

I was like, there’s millions of young people watching who are hungry for someone to say, ‘You’re OK. You’re seen very deeply.’ And more often than not the opportunity is not taken, and it is absolutely devastating and heartbreaking because there is so much medicine that could be delivered through those films.”

While it’s easy to label Garfield as sour grapes, I don’t believe that’s the case. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see why he’s critical of The Amazing Spider-Man (see our review) – the wonderful chemistry he shared with Emma Stone got lost in a plot filled with confusing villains that ultimately went nowhere.

Garfield even took the time to wish his successor Tom Holland well. It’s taken a little while for his career to recover, but he’s now earning rave reviews in the Mel Gibson-directed Hacksaw Ridge, and will also be seen in Martin Scorsese’s passion project Silence.

So all’s well that ends well. But if you’re feeling nostalgic, why don’t you read about the time Garfield, Stone and Jamie Foxx all came to Singapore, and we got to meet them at MBS?