The young Brit who landed the coveted role of Peter Parker in Marc Webb's reboot still isn't sure why he, of all people, lucked into one of Hollywood's most prized franchises.
Coming off the release of the Oscar-caliber drama The Social Network, Garfield turns his attention to the webslinger and, for starters, why he got the role over the other actors out there (including Community's Donald Glover, who tweeted that the two men found common ground): "I have no idea! I'm glad I didn't have to make the decision. I have no idea why they cast me. If I started thinking about that, I think I'd sabotage myself and have to pull myself out of the movie and be like, 'I think you made the wrong decision.'
"I did have a strange moment when I was told I was going to play this role," he added. "I was like, 'Oh, wow, this is something I've wanted to do ever since I was a kid.' There was a moment of total boyish excitement. It was this cosmic convergence where I was in the past, present and future all at once."
As for any advice he might've gotten when the news broke, Garfield did get a couple of well-sourced tips:
"I was told by someone who should be listened to — I'm not going to say who it was—he said, 'Don't try and live up to it. Don't think you have to live up to what that image and that symbol means to people.' And first I thought that was really reassuring. But then you go, 'No, I really want to live up to that symbol.' When I was 12 years old I saw the struggle Peter Parker was going through to be of use to society, I wanted to live up to that. And I realized that even Peter Parker is trying to live up to that symbol of Spider-Man he's created. That's what makes him so special: He's undeniably human and going through the same struggles as everyone else. So you try to live up to that symbol and then you have to be okay not living up to it, because not even Peter Parker can do it."