Saturday, July 13, 2024

Flashback: How Andrew Garfield Got Himself Fired from “Spider Man” And Now Might Get an Oscar Nod


Andrew Garfield is back on top. But it wasn’t easy.

After making two “Spider Man” Movies he managed to get himself fired from a third one. I wrote the below column on May 1, 2015.

Now–as you might know–he’s back in the “Spider Man” fold. He’s also looking at an Oscar nomination for “tick tick Boom.” In fact, I think he could win Best Actor.

In between, Garfield won a Tony Award for “Angels in America” on Broadway. And he still has that full head of hair!

Here’s my column from May 1, 2015:

Thanks to the Sony hacks, via Wikileaks, we now know why Andrew Garfield won’t be making any more “Spider Man” movies– or maybe any Sony films for the foreseeable future.

It turns that Garfield insulted Sony chief Kaz Hirai by snubbing him last summer in Rio de Janeiro at a big Sony gala celebrating the end of the World Cup. Kaz had planned to introduce Garfield as the star of “Spider Man 3” set for 2016 in a speech before 750 guests. But Garfield, having just arrived in Rio, made a huge mistake. He snubbed Kaz and never came down for dinner. Yikes. In Rio this didn’t go well, and the bad feeling reverberated. An email alerting everyone read: “Here we are about one hour away from our Gala event and Andrew decides he doesn’t want to attend.  He has a rather scruffy beard and he just wants to be left alone.”

Kaz Hirai had planned on making this speech:

Andrew is an actor who has graced the screen in roles in several important Sony Pictures Entertainment films, including The Social Network, in which he played Mark Zuckerberg’s onetime friend and co-founder of Facebook, Eduardo Saverin.  The Social Network, to my mind, is the Citizen Kane of the 21st Century, a film that social historians hundreds of years from now will point to as one of the most emblematic of our era.

[slide showing poster of The Social Network and The Amazing Spider-Man 2] Another historic movie starring Andrew is The Amazing Spider-Man and The Amazing Spider-Man 2, which continues to weave movie magic in hearts and minds around the world.  Together those two films have taken in more than $XXX million at the global box office.

I’m proud to say that Andrew will be returning as Peter Parker in The Amazing Spider-Man 3, which will be released in May, 2016.

Needless to say, when Garfield didn’t come down for dinner, the speech was changed. Garfield next stars in “99 Homes” this September, and Martin Scorsese’s “Silence” with Adam Driver.

Here is a series of emails explaining all this:

Fwd: Andrew Garfield in RioBegin forwarded message:
From: “Clark, Nigel”Date: July 14, 2014 6:53:47 PM PDTTo: “Pascal, Amy”Cc: “Blake, Jeff”

Subject: Andrew Garfield in Rio

As requested, here are the relevant emails.
In red, at the very bottom: the email I received on Saturday afternoon, from Steve Bernard informing me that Andrew was not making the red carpet or the Sony gala dinner, and Kay Aoki’s response.

In blue: my email correspondence with Rupert upon receiving the news.
In black (immediately below): an email from Steve Bernard in response to my asking earlier today how Andrew was feeling.

As I mentioned when you called, it may very well be that Andrew met Kaz on the day of the match etc. I’m not aware of that.


Very happy. Mark Wachter took him and Rupert surfing this morning. They are touring the city now.
Sony Music took them out for a late dinner last night.
I asked AG if he minded if I sat Santana next to him at the match. He had a big smile.

All good now

Stevan (Steve) Bernard
Executive Vice President – SEHS
Sony Pictures Entertainment

I’m sure the event was successful, despite Andrew’s absence. The last minute change to Kaz’s speech and to the seating arrangement was manageable, but it’s a slight to Kaz and the Sony hosts on the ground.

From: Rupert Fowler
To: Clark, Nigel; Enriquez, Vianne; Knight, Prue
Cc: Aoki, Keiko; Bernard, Stevan; van der Werff, Susan; Blake, Jeff
Sent: Sat Jul 12 16:13:35 2014
Subject: RE: URGENT URGENT: World Cup

​Hi Nigel,

He had been feeling under the weather all day and exhausted from coming off the plane early this morning so I gave as much notice as I could. Not ideal though I understand, hope it didn’t have too great an impact on things.

From: Clark, Nigel
Sent: 12 July 2014 19:56
To: Rupert Fowler; Enriquez, Vianne; Knight, Prue
Cc: Aoki, Keiko; Bernard, Stevan; van der Werff, Susan; Blake, Jeff
Subject: Re: URGENT URGENT: World Cup

I hear that Andrew decided at the last minute to skip the Sony event and dinner. Is that true? It puts us in an embarrassing situation with Kaz Hirai.

That is extremely embarrassing….
But I will tell Kaz and change the seating and his speech!!
Thanks for letting me know.


From: Bernard, Stevan
Sent: Sunday, July 13, 2014 4:49 AM
To: Clark, Nigel
Cc: Aoki, Keiko
Subject: AG Problem – PLEASE READ
Importance: High

Here we are about one hour away from our Gala event and Andrew decides he doesn’t want to attend.  He has a rather scruffy beard and he just wants to be left alone

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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