The summer movie season is finally behind us, and, as far as box office receipts go, it was one of the worst in recent memory. Kicking off the season was The Amazing Spider-Man 2, which earned $202.8 million domestically and $708 million worldwide, both tallies less than its predecessor The Amazing Spider-Man's domestic ($262 million) and worldwide ($757.9 million) totals.
While doing press for his new drama 99 Homes at the Toronto International Film Festival, The Amazing Spider-Man 2 star Andrew Garfield fired back at critics for their negative response to the film, hinting that studio interference may have lead to the sequel's lackluster box office performance and its bad reaction from many reviewers and fans alike.
"It's interesting. I read a lot of the reactions from people and I had to stop because I could feel I was getting away from how I actually felt about it. For me, I read the script that Alex (Kurtzman) and Bob (Orci) wrote, and I genuinely loved it. There was this thread running through it. I think what happened was, through the pre-production, production, and post-production, when you have something that works as a whole, and then you start removing portions of it-because there was even more of it than was in the final cut, and everything was related. 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. But I'll tell you this: Talking about the experience as opposed to how it was perceived, I got to work in deep scenes that you don't usually see in comic book movies, and I got to explore this orphan boy-a lot of which was taken out, and which we'd explored more. It's interesting to do a postmortem. I'm proud of a lot of it and had a good time, and was a bit taken aback by the response."
When asked to elaborate on the critical response, the actor revealed he wants to learn how they can make a better movie based on the criticism.
"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. Hopefully, we can get underneath what the criticism was about, and if we missed anything."
It isn't known when Andrew Garfield will be back for The Amazing Spider-Man 3, after Sony Pictures announced in July that the sequel is being pushed to 2018, to make way for the upcoming spin-off The Sinister Six, which is slated for release on November 11, 2016. Perhaps the "fatigue" issue is what caused Sony to move forward with the villain-centric Sinister Six, to give both the fans and Andrew Garfield himself a break from the webbed wonder, for just a few years.