After spending most of 2021 denying rumors and speculation about his involvement in Spider-Man: No Way Home and amidst Oscar buzz for his role in Tick, Tick... Boom!, Andrew Garfield is now freely discussing his return to the Spider-Man role and the experience of shooting alongside fellow web-slingers Tom Holland and Tobey Maguire.
A professed Spider-Man fan himself, Spider-Man: No Way Home wasn't just a homecoming for The Amazing Spider-Man star, it was also a love letter to Spider-Man fans. In fact, the fans are why Garfield chose to lie about his reprisal, since he, as a fan, explained that he would've wanted to be surprised.
Still, keeping secrets wasn't Garfield's only contribution to the record-breaking film. According to "Peter 3," he came up with the right moment for a scene fans had long hoped to see and which also may have been one of the most meta.
Andrew Garfield's Idea for Pointing Spidey Meme Scene
In an interview with Josh Horowitz on The Happy Sad Confused podcast, Andrew Garfield opened up about No Way Home's homage to the now-infamous Spider-Man pointing meme:
"Oh, so we were trying to figure out the pointing thing, like how we were going to do the pointing meme in a way - it took us a while - it kind of happened naturally on that scaffolding scene with Peter 1, Peter 2, Peter 3, like all that.
The meme Garfield referenced is actually an image from the Spider-Man animated series where Paul Soles voiced the web-slinger. In Episode 19 of its inaugural season, Spidey confronts a criminal who's been impersonating him, leading to the two pointing at each other.
Of course, the scene has found new life as a meme in recent years and even gained an additional web-head, particularly when rumors of Andrew Garfield and Tobey Maguire's involvement in No Way Home picked up steam.
As Garfield explained, the film's Statue of Liberty scaffolding sequence presented a natural moment for the trio to evoke the pointing meme.
However, The Amazing Spider-Man star had an idea for how the meme could work in the school laboratory sequence as well, saying, "But then I was like, no, this is the moment where we get to go, 'Do you mean me?'"
"I remember having a lightning bolt and running into set and telling [director] Jon [Watts], 'I got it, I got it.'Cause there's this moment where Jacob is like, 'Hey Peter?' and we all go, 'Yeah?' But in the script, it was like, that was that. We all go 'Yeah?' and in the script, my Peter says, 'This isn't going to get old at all,' like something kind of sardonic - which felt kinda undercutting and not quite right for the moment because it's cute. It's actually kinda cute. So then we were thinking I could say, 'Aw, this is adorable. We're so adorable. God, we're cute.' Something like that. But then I was like, no, this is the moment where we get to go, 'Do you mean me?' Jon was like, 'That's it. That's it. Done.' I was so happy that worked."
No Way Home Was Andrew Garfield's Passion Project
While Tobey Maguire and now Tom Holland have their own complete Spider-Man trilogies, Andrew Garfield's run as the web-slinger was cut short following 2014's The Amazing Spider-Man 2.
Through the years, Garfield's run has often been considered the lesser of cinema's Spider-Man films; but due to renewed interest ahead of No Way Home - coupled with his reprisal in the film - Garfield finally received due recognition for his performance, leading fans to petition Sony for his franchise's revival and a third film for his character.
While the actor claims to be open to the possibility, fan appreciation for Garfield's role both on-screen and behind-the-scenes of No Way Home only continues to grow.
In addition to developing the meme scene for the film, Garfield actually improvised one of its best lines and even contributed to the script in regard to his character's story and role in the brotherhood of Peter Parkers.
Clearly, No Way Home was a passion project for the Spider-Man star. The question, of course, is whether he and Sony can find a way to work together again apart from the MCU. If so - and if the year's award season goes Garfield's way - he won't just be returning as a new fan-favorite hero but also as an Academy Award-winning actor.
Spider-Man: No Way Home is currently playing in theaters.