During the run up to Spider-Man: No Way Home Andrew Garfield did his best to convincingly lie about something we all knew was true. He constantly denied he was returning as Peter Parker in the multiversal franchise crossover. He doesn’t have to keep up that ruse anymore, so he finally opened up about playing the part again. And his comments not only make us like him more. They make us like No Way Home more too.
The Amazing Spider-Man spoke to Variety about donning his Spidey suit once more. It started with a call from Amy Pascal, Kevin Feige, and director Jon Watts. Garfield never expected to “have a conversation” about reprising the role again. But he said what he heard “was immediately undeniable.” Their idea “sounded incredibly fun, incredibly spiritual — trippy and thematically interesting.” Plus, as a fan of the character, he too wanted to see three Peters on screen together.
That wasn’t the whole pitch, though. Garfield said they also enticed him by asking what he’d “want to explore” as his version of Peter who meets both an older and younger version of himself. That led to discussions about brotherhood and mentorship. And about trying to save someone from heading down the same dark path you did. All of which led to an emotional place for both Garfield and his Peter.
“That character is isolated in his emotional experience and physical experience,” said Garfield. “But what happens when that aloneness gets blasted open, and you come to realize that you’ve never been alone and there are other brothers going through the exact same thing? That’s a big spiritual journey to go on, man. And then we just milked out all the fun that we could possibly have.”
He and Tobey Maguire filmed for two weeks. Which included the scene where Garfield, who could not save Gwen in The Amazing Spider-Man 2, catches MJ before she falls to her own death. Garfield said that “cosmically beautiful” moment helped “to heal the most traumatic moment” of his character’s life. That scene is what really sold Garfield on the whole endeavor. (At one point the film’s screenwriters considered bringing back both Kirsten Dunst and Emma Stone. That would have changed his character’s history. And it would have undercut his MJ rescue in No Way Home. Garfield said that possibility is “too big” to even consider.)
As for the live-action Peters, the three traded some unique notes about playing the part. Garfield geeked out when he processed them all standing around in their suits. But that also found time to discuss practical matters, like costume logistics. He even made Tom Holland jealous because Garfield’s suit has little zippers. They let him easily get his hands out, while Holland has to use his nose to use a phone. They did have “deeper conversations” about Peter Parker too, though.
Garfield said he’s “definitely open” to reprising the character again. If there’s an “opportunity to step back in and tell more of that story” in a meaningful way.
“I love that character,” he said. Of playing him again, he added, “It was joyful, and a feeling of closure for me. There was so many unanswered questions for my Peter, where we left it. I got to step back in and get some healing for him. And also really supporting [Holland’s] Peter, and honoring his character completing that trilogy, not distracting or detracting from it.
Turns out we didn’t need to hear from Garfield to know how he felt about this experience. He told everyone in the film. “There’s a line I improvised in the movie,” he said. “Looking at [Maguire and Holland] and I tell them I love them. That was just me loving them.”
Knowing that makes us love both him and the film even more.