After what some deemed a bit of a soppy start to the AMAZING SPIDER-MAN franchise with the first movie in Sony's relaunched Spidey-verse, we were hoping for a more Spidey-like Spidey in Marc Webb’s THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN 2. Unfortunately, despite some early moments of brilliance, the sequel was a flawed, frustrating flop of a film… or maybe we’re just foolish, fickle fanboys. Either way, as a result of the reaction to ASM2, a third movie in the series was pushed back, leading to VENOM and THE SINISTER SIX both being brought forward to be released before THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN 3. Speaking to The Daily Beast, star Andrew Garfield has been discussing the lukewarm response to ASM2.
Garfield said, “I read a lot of the reactions from people and I had stop because I could feel I was getting away from how I actually felt about it. For me, I read the script that Alex wrote, and I genuinely loved it. There was this thread running through it. It’s interesting to do a post-mortem. I’m proud of a lot of it and had a good time, and was a bit taken aback by the response.”
The actor then went on to put some of the blame at the door of Sony Pictures, adding, “Once you start removing things and saying, ‘No, that doesn’t work,’ then the thread is broken and it’s hard to go with the flow of the story. Certain people at the studio had problems with certain parts of it, and ultimately the studio is the final say in those movies because they’re the tentpoles, so you have to answer to those people.”
On some of the complaints that fans have made about THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN 2, Garfield explained, “It’s a discernment thing. What are the people actually saying? What’s underneath the complaint, and how can we learn from that? We can’t go, ‘Oh God, we fucked up because all these people are saying all these things! It’s shit!’ We have to ask ourselves, ‘What do we believe to be true?’ Is it that this is the fifth Spider-Man movie in however many years, and there’s a bit of fatigue? Is it that there was too much in there? Is it that it didn’t link? If it linked seamlessly, would that be too much? Were there tonal issues? What is it? I think all that is valuable. Constructive criticism is different from people just being dicks, and I love constructive criticism.”
In fairness to Garfield, he at least seems to be aware that there were certain issues with the film and hopefully the studio is as honest with themselves as the actor is. The annoying thing about THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN 2, to us at least, is that there were so many moments that were great to see, such as the opening moments of Garfield as Spidey. Then came the constant shift of tone, the cramming in of far, far, far too many elements and characters, shoehorned subplots, high-spec video game graphics, and then a death that meant so, so much in the comic book world and to the future of Peter Parker just seemed to be thrown in as an afterthought.
As it stands, THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN 3, with Garfield returning as the Wallcrawler, has been pushed back to a tentative 2018 release, with spin-offs VENOM and THE SINISTER SIX both seen as bigger priorities in the aftermath of the response to ASM2. Garfield has actually teased a possible appearance from himself as Spider-Man in THE SINISTER SIX, although that’s merely a rumour at this stage of the game. Here’s hoping that Sony Pictures can iron out the issues that they’ve had with the first two films in their relaunched Spidey franchise.
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