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Five things you really need to know about Andrew Garfield

Tick, Tick BOOM! is an appropriate enough title for the latest movie from ex-Spider-Man star Andrew Garfield as, despite its protracted and highly-public production countdown, no-one seems entirely sure as when it’s likely to explode on to screens. What we do know is it’s a musical, Netflix has bagged the broadcast rights and, apparently, it has to be contractually released before the end of the current year. While waiting for firmer tidings of the likely timings and critical reception, it’s the ideal opportunity to while away an idle moment or two uncovering Five Things You Almost Certainly Didn’t Know About Andrew Garfield…

Gafnecu Five things you really need to know about Andrew Garfield

One: Unlike most actors who are born out in the sticks and then head Hollywood-wards. Garfield was actually born within posturing distance of Tinseltown, before promptly decamping some 8,800 kilometres northeast to Epsom, an English market town best known for its bath salts. The second son of California-born Richard and Essex girl Lynn (who together ran an interior design business), the young Garfield divided his early years between stamp-collecting and swimming, proof positive, perhaps, of the limited opportunities London commuterland afforded an aspiring thesp.

Thankfully, he was able to follow up on his dramatic impulses by first enrolling in a Theatre Studies course at his local school, then graduating to the University of London’s Central School of Speech and Drama, the alma mater of such bigscreen heavyweights as Dame Judi Dench, Carrie Fisher and Sir Laurence Olivier. He then served his time in the world of provincial UK theatre (winning the Outstanding Newcomer Award at the prestigious Evening Standard Theatre Awards in 2006), before making a guest appearance in the BBC’s Doctor Who, the world’s longest-running science fiction series. Various TV and movie supporting roles followed, before he hit the big time as the star of two high profile 2010 movies – Never Let Me Go and The Social Network. Two years later, he was Spider-Man.

Gafnecu Five things you really need to know about Andrew Garfield spiderman

Two: It’s fair to say that it was The Amazing Spider-Man (2012) that transformed the actor’s fortunes from: “Andrew, who?” to “Oh really? I thought it was Toby Maguire…” (the incumbent Spidey in the preceding web-slinging trilogy). Despite describing the role as a “massive challenge in many ways” – and despite the popularity of his long-standing predecessor, it soon seemed as though Garfield had made the part his own. Indeed, The Guardian – the relatively, high-brow, left-leaning former broadsheet not best known for its love of the cinematic superhero genre – went as far as to acclaim him as “the definitive Spider-Man”. Sadly, he didn’t stay definitive for all that long.

Although he was once again swinging across the New York skyline in 2014’s somewhat unimaginatively-titled The Amazing Spider-Man 2, it was to be his last outing as the arachnid-venomed villain-thwarter. The third part of the putative trilogy – which, let’s take a wild stab, was called The Amazing Spider-Man 3 – was sadly never to be.
Disappointingly, it wasn’t Doc Ock, the Green Goblin, Kraven the Hunter or any other of Spidey’s gaudy back catalogue of bad-doers that saw him off. Rather more prosaically, it was the conclusion of a long-term global copyright contretemps. This saw the rights to Spidey relinquished by Sony and permission granted for Peter Parker (the webslinger’s alter ego) to join the rest of the cinematic Marvel universe in time for 2016’s Captain America: Civil War, a sort of prelude to the box-office bazookaing end of the wider Avengers’ storyline.

Sadly, when Spidey did get to catch up with the rest of his comic book counterparts – notably Thor, the Hulk and Iron Man – he looked a lot like 20-year-old up-and-coming actor Tom Holland and not a bit like the now surplus-to-requirements Garfield.

Gafnecu Five things you really need to know about Andrew Garfield with emma stone

Three: Although dumped from the Spideyverse, Garfield can take some comfort from the fact his undoubted charms have seen him woo some of the world’s most beautiful women. Just prior to cinematic superheroing taking him centrestage, he was in a long-term relationship with Westworld actress Shannon Woodward. This apparently foundered when superstardom kept the couple apart. The fact that Woodward came out as gay a couple of years later, however, probably indicates the affair was ill-fated from the off.

Later years saw him linked to his The Amazing Spider-Man co-star Emma Stone, fellow Marvel alumnus Susie Abromeit and Rita Ora, the feted and award-winning British singer-songwriter. More recently, he was said to have been dating stunning model and med school graduate, 27-year-old Christine Gabel. Rumour has it, though, that they too have split, with born-again bachelor Garfield apparently spending much of 2020 isolating at home alone.

Gafnecu Five things you really need to know about Andrew Garfield breathe

Four: Thankfully, the Covid-19 outbreak didn’t totally curtail his dramatic career, with filming of the forthcoming Tick, Tick BOOM! completed in November last year. The movie sees Garfield take on the role of Johnathan Larson, a wannabe playwright reduced to waiting tables in New York while he awaits his big break.

Said to be an autobiographical tale – the “real” Johnathan Larson, the man behind the Tony Award-winning musical Rent, wrote and composed the piece – the movie also stars Alexandra Shipp and Vanessa Hudgens, while marking the directorial debut of Lin-Manuel Miranda, the creative tour de force behind Hamilton, one of the most successful Broadway musicals of all time.

Gafnecu Five things you really need to know about Andrew Garfield (2)

Five: While excitement is certainly building with regard to the premiere of Tick, Tick BOOM!, it’s upcoming arrival has been all but eclipsed by rumours of Something Even Bigger waiting in the wings – Garfield’s return as Spider-Man. Even more compelling, there is no suggestion that his successor, Holland, has been ousted, but rather that he will be joining him (and his own predecessor Maguire) in the allegedly dimension-hopping Spider-Man: No Way Home, which is due to hit your local multiplex at some point in December this year.

Should the rumours be borne out, this will see the Spidermen of various realities teaming up to combat a veritable multi-verse of villains, with Alfred Molina, Jamie Foxx and Rhys Ifans returning as Doctor Octopus, Electro and The Lizard respectively from their own earlier incarnations of the franchise. Although Marvel Studios is proving coy about officially confirming this mix and matching of the wider Spidyverse, it’s now come to be regarded as petty much the Worst Kept Scripting Secret in Hollywood (and competition is high for such a title).

It’s fair to say, should it not come to pass, several generations of the Webbed Wonder’s most devout followers are going be left choking on their novelty Peter Parker Popcorn packets. Good as it might well certainly be, the eventual arrival of Tick, Tick BOOM!, may not suffice to make up for any such disappointment.


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2021-05-22T17:33:50+00:00 May 21, 2021|Entertainment|