For the past couple of years, around awards season (whether it be for the Oscars or Emmys), Variety has hosted Actors on Actors, a series where two performers sit down together and ask each other questions about their careers and performances. Recently, Andrew Garfield and Amy Adams, who are both in contention for an Oscar nomination this year for Hacksaw Ridge / Silence and Arrival / Nocturnal Animals, respectively, took part in the interview and discussed a common connection in their careers: their roles in superhero movies.
Garfield played Spider-Man in 2012’s The Amazing Spider-Man and 2014’s The Amazing Spider-Man 2, while Adams occupies the role of Lois Lane in the DC Extended Universe. Garfield, in particular, spoke about how his role as the web-crawler had an effect on him: “There’s something about being that young in that kind of machinery which I think is really dangerous. I was still young enough to struggle with the value system, I suppose, of corporate America really, it’s a corporate enterprise mostly.”
On story and character not being at the “top of the priority list,” Garfield explained, “I found that really, really tricky. I signed up to serve the story, and to serve this incredible character that I’ve been dressing as since I was three, and then it gets compromised and it breaks your heart. I got heartbroken a little bit to a certain degree.”
The actor was 27 years old when he took on the role, and, despite earning positive reviews for his performance, his time as the character was cut short when Sony canceled The Amazing Spider-Man franchise and eventually began working with Marvel Studios on next year’s Spider-Man: Homecoming.
Garfield has given Tom Holland, the new Peter Parker, his blessing and has expressed his excitement over the rights for the character being back at Marvel Studios, but the entire experience of working on such a big-budget studio film sounds like it was, understandably, disheartening to the actor. However, Garfield did praise the cast and director, Marc Webb, so it certainly wasn’t all bad.
Adams also chimed in and talked about her experience playing the iconic Lois Lane in several DC movies, further expressing the difficulty of portraying comic book characters in major studio productions. “I love playing her, I love everyone I work with but sometimes it’s tricky because I feel she’s in service of the story instead of the story serving the character,” she said.