What New Spider-Man Tom Holland Can Learn From Previous Spider-Man Actors Andrew Garfield & Tobey Maguire
Another day, another superhero movie reboot: According to Marvel, actor Tom Holland is officially the new Spider-Man in a currently untitled film set for a Summer 2017 release. Though this will technically be the third version of Spider-Man in 15 years, both previous iterations of the character — Tobey Maguire in Spider-Man between 2002 and 2007, and Andrew Garfield in The Amazing Spider-Man between 2012 and 2014 — the franchise revamp makes a lot of sense. Both Maguire and Garfield's version of the character were created under Sony, which owned the film rights to the character despite Marvel actually creating the Spider-Man comics — that is, up until February 2015, when Marvel closed a historic deal with Sony, and acquired the film rights as well. Suffice to say, Holland has a big job ahead of him.
Though Spider-Man has effectively switched universes — it's rumored that Marvel will produce a standalone film for the character titled Spider-man: The New Avenger, in addition to placing him in a variety of films within the Marvel Cinematic Universe over the next few years — Holland still stands to learn a lot from previous Spider-Mans Garfield and Maguire. If anyone knows the tribulations of taking on the iconic role, however, it's it's them.
To that end, here are a few lessons that Holland could learn from these franchise veterans.
Ignore The Haters And Focus On The Character
Let's face it, people say some mean things about the actors playing superheroes, and no one was more aware of that than Tobey Maguire. When he first took on the role, nothing in his filmography made him seem like he could pull off playing an action star, and Spider-Man fans were pretty vocal about him being wrong for the part. Because he's a good actor, however, Maguire ignored what people were saying and focused on bringing the character to life:
"I know that some people think I'm not exciting enough or volatile enough for this kind of role, but I think that kind of criticism is absolutely off-base. Peter Parker is not a typical action hero. He's probably the most down-to-earth, most carefully drawn, and least plastic of comic book figures."
Date A Co-Star
Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone nailed the "America's Sweethearts" thing immediately, and it made the first Amazing Spider-Man film in 2012 all that much more appealing.
Don't Let THIS Happen To Peter Parker
I know Holland is an actor — not a producer — and that speaking against the creative direction of the franchise might be tough... but, at the same time, someone has to say something if Marvel's Spider-Man films try to replicate whatever nonsense is going on in the above GIF.
Be Prepared For A Huge Change In Diet And Physical Regime
Both Maguire and Garfield have said they had to work with trainers to bulk up for the role. Maguire, in particular, said in an interview with Cinema that he "wasn't able to eat that much for a long time." Parker may be a nerd, but he's still supposed to have muscles beneath that dorky veneer.
Take The Franchise Seriously
Holland's already an experienced actor, with a great deal of independent film and theater in his background, so chances are, he already knows that he should approach this role — like any role — with respect and gravitas. Just in case, however, there's any part of him thinking, "Psh, it's a super hero movie, it's not like it's Shakespeare," then he better think again because fans do not agree. Sam Raimi, the director of the Maguire Spider-Man movies, knew better than anyone how seriously the character should be taken. Raimi explained in interviews at the time:
“I feel like there’s a great bar of expectation that I have to meet. It better be damn good. That’s all I’m thinking, and that’s what occupies all of my waking hours and all of my sleepless nights. 'Is it good enough?Is it right for the character?'"
Unfortunately, we'll all have to wait a while to see Holland in this major role, but if he follows these simple tips, stepping into Spider-Man's shoes should be a breeze.
Images: Giphy (4)