TOBEY MAGUIRE You’re in New York for Death of a Salesman, right?
ANDREW GARFIELD Yeah, that’s right.
TM I love that you’re doing that. And you’re enjoying the play, the experience? "Enjoying" is a strange word for that play. How has it been playing Biff?
AG [Laughs] Of course going through this kind of release and catharsis, facing all your demons in a space of three hours every night—it can be incredibly rewarding. It’s invigorating. It’s a great challenge, a great test and opportunity. There’s something very pure about it. There are no frills and there’s nowhere to hide and you have to be vulnerable as hell, and you have to serve something much greater than yourself, which is this incredible work of art that you’re trying to bring to life. It’s a wonderful, lucky opportunity for any actor to have. But, yeah, the majority of the time I wake up in the morning I’m kind of confused as to why I decided to do it. [Laughs] But you have to heave yourself up!
TM And do you feel—I don’t want to say confined or imply any negativity— but the schedule of a broadway show can be long and hard, portraying a character day after day.
AG I think this is enough to be contending with right now. The only other thing that’s been preying on my mind is the impending release of this movie I’ve done, and that is much more stressful than being on stage every night.
TM [Laughs] Would that be the release of The Amazing Spider-Man?!
AG That’s the one! Do you know about this movie? [Laughs]
TM I do know about it! actually, 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!
AG Oh, man!
TM 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.
AG That’s so nice of you.
TM A lot of what you’ve been talking about, the connectivity between you and the story and the fans, it seems like you have a great respect for the character.
AG Very much so. Peter Parker is such a positive character—he’s pure wish fulfillment, an underdog. I grew so much from him when I was a kid, from the comics all the way up to the first movie you were in. 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!
AG 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!