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Andrew Garfield Had Some Eyebrow-Raising Remarks About His Time Playing Spider-Man

Spider-Man is considered one of the most popular superheroes on the planet for a reason. The character of Peter Parker isn't a spacefaring god or a billionaire with unlimited resources, but a scrappy kid from Queens with a spandex spidey-suit and a heart of gold. He just wants to pass calculus, date his crush, and maybe save the city once in a while. Above all else, Spider-Man represents the common person. As multiple "Spider-Man" movies have taught us, anyone can be Spider-Man.

Of the three different live-action iterations of the character, the Andrew Garfield-led "Amazing Spider-Man" movies are, in many ways, the middle children of the "Spider-Man" franchise. In 2012, when audiences first got to see Garfield don the webslinger's costume, the Marvel Cinematic Universe had just demonstrated its staying power a mere two months prior with "The Avengers," which turned out to be a billion-dollar cash cow (via The Numbers). When "Amazing Spider-Man 2" debuted to middling reviews, it wasn't long before Garfield was on his way out from the role.

Since then, he's spoken about that pair of films as among his favorite experiences as an actor. Now, in an interview with The Guardian, Andrew Garfield is a bit more candid about the lessons he learned during his time as your friendly neighborhood Spider-Man.

Andrew Garfield's innocence was shattered by Hollywood greed

Speaking to The Guardian as part of a profile to promote several new films of his, Andrew Garfield was thankful not to be asked whether he'd appear in the upcoming "Spider-Man: No Way Home," but still talked about his time as the webslinger to open up about the realities of the business he learned while in the webslinger role. Asked about a comment he had made in 2017, in which Garfield claimed to have had his "heart broken a little bit" by the experience, the actor said, "I went from being a naïve boy to growing up."

That growing up took the form of learning that money, not artistic integrity, guides so much of the film industry. "How could I ever imagine that it was going to be a pure experience? There are millions of dollars at stake and that's what guides the ship. It was a big awakening and it hurt," Garfield said. 

Elaborating, Garfield explained the disconnect between the innocence of being a fan and the harsh reality of Hollywood money is immense and hard to swallow, saying, "Comic-Con in San Diego is full of grown men and women still in touch with that pure thing the character meant to them. You add in market forces and test groups and suddenly the focus is less on the soul of it and more on ensuring we make as much money as possible. And I found that — find that — heartbreaking in all matters of the culture."