The inception of The Amazing Spider-Man is a curious story. Director Sam Raimi was already heavy into development on Spider-Man 4 with Tobey Maguire returning as Spidey and John Malkovich poised to play the film’s villain, Vulture. Apparently Raimi and Sony didn’t exactly see eye-to-eye on where the fourth Spider-Man should go, and the director wasn’t particularly confident that he could turn out a quality movie in time to make the Summer 2011 release date. Moreover, Raimi was allegedly still sour about being forced to include Venom in Spider-Man 3, so he wasn’t exactly eager to bend to the studio’s will.
An abrupt announcement was made that Spider-Man 4 was dead, Raimi and Maguire were out, and a reboot was slated for a Summer 2012 release date. Well, we’re now on the cusp of Summer 2012 and the release of The Amazing Spider-Man is a few short months away. Maguire recently sat down to interview the new Spidey, Andrew Garfield, and some interesting/fun tidbits were gleaned from the conversation. Hit the jump for more.
During the interview between the two actors for VMan, Maguire commented on his thoughts when he learned more about the reboot and who would be filling his Spidey suit shoes:
“When it was coming together, I was particularly excited at two moments: one was when [director] Marc Webb got involved. I think he’s an interesting and cool choice. and then I was certainly curious as to who was going to play Peter Parker. When I heard it was you, I was literally like, Fucking perfect!… I just want it to be great, and I thought, What a great actor Andrew is, I’m glad that’s what’s happening here.”
“I’m friends with a few of the guys who were up for it, and I actually had dinner with Jamie [Bell] the night of my screen test and his screen test. We compared notes and war stories, and we kind of got past the ridiculousness of it all and thought it would be a nice idea to get everyone together and kind of interview each other about how messed up the process is, being against each other, and remember that we’re all in it together, knowing that when you take off that bodysuit someone else is going to be stepping into your sweat immediately after. It’s a weird kind of cattle call.”
Garfield also elaborated on the pressure-filled environment of the actual screen test:
“Marc [Webb] was great. He was very open and encouraging. You have the monitoring area with literally about 30 people judging you, looking at your face and whispering to each other—it’s one of the most disconcerting and kind of humiliating things to go through, if you’re aware of it, you know what I mean?”
The recent record-shattering box office of The Avengers had many remembering what a big deal it was when Spider-Man broke the $100 million opening weekend barrier in 2002. Maguire talked about how different the movie box office environment was back then:
“I think our thing was a little bit different because movies hadn’t been doing the sort of opening-weekend business that’s fairly common—even expected—today. The first Harry Potter came out about six months before us and it was this phenom- enon from Day one. it was so wild because it was a new thing at that moment—and I’m not saying that hasn’t happened in movie history, but at the time that was a big jump. and then that happened with us. People didn’t anticipate [2002’s Spider- Man] to be like that. Leading up to it you start to get reactions and people tell you, you know, what the tracking is and what range your opening weekend box office is likely to be. but for me it was kind of unexpected. So much shifted in my life the weekend the movie came out. it was shocking.”
“I was 19 when I saw [Spider-Man]. I got a pirated DVD at portobello Market with my friend Terry McGuiness, and we went back to my skanky apartment in North London and we watched it twice in a row and then practiced your final line in the mirror!… Terry has this thick accent and every time I would recite that line he would laugh this very distinct laugh and say, ‘No, man, you could never be fucking Spider-Man. You’ll never be fucking Spider-Man!’ I was so humiliated and upset. But, um…fuck you, Terry!”
Garfield also talked about how much the character means to him and how he hopes fans appreciate his take on Peter Parker:
“I just feel such a great responsibility to the story and to the fans, because I know in my heart how much this character means to people, because it means that much to me. For the sake of all the people who care about it as much as I do—I want to bring the character to life and make sure they’re as satisfied as they can possibly be.”
The full interview is a fascinating read, with a great back-and-forth between Garfield and Maguire about the impending superstardom that Garfield is about to encounter. It’s incredibly cool to see these two actors taking the reboot in stride—especially given how the film came about—and I’d absolutely love to see a roundtable with Garfield, Maguire, Raimi and Webb talking all things Spider-Man.