For me, Gwen Stacy is a bit of everything, she’s a very well-rounded character. How do you see her personally?
Emma Stone: She does do some really important saving in the film, but I think there is an element of her being a damsel in distress, ultimately. Which is what I will argue in the whole scheme of things, when knowing the full story of Gwen Stacy, she does have those elements. I find it hard to sit here and say, “She’s just badass, she knows she’s strong, she knows what she’s doing,” because it think that it’s very important that people know that people are not just that way. There’s also being stupid in love (laughs), making decisions that make you get in the face of danger. She’s all of it, she’s a very well rounded “superhero girlfriend”. She doesn’t just fit into a box of being just strong and just smart. She’s also got elements of being in distress, being scared, vulnerable, and terrified in a lot of senses. She’s kind of all of it, which is even better. She’s human.
What was it that drew you to playing Gwen Stacy in ‘The Amazing Spider-Man’? Playing this character in the Spider-Man world that has brought about so much debate.
Emma Stone: I felt pressure once I was cast, I was like, “Oh boy! There are a lot of opinions.” I was really freaked out (laughs). But I tried to stop reading message boards as soon as possible so that I could just do the best I could do. I had just known the Sam Raimi trilogy, then folders, erasers and backpacks with Spider-Man on them, that was the extent of my knowledge of Spider-Man. But learning the story of Gwen was just so amazing. It’s tragic and epic and I just immediately wanted to be apart of it. And the fact that people unsubscribed to their comic books and burned their copies, I was like, “Hell yeah!” It was like being into The Beatles in 1964 or something like that (laughs), when the parents were revolting. There was something in me that loved that stamp of pop culture. And what happens to Peter Parker ultimately in his relationship with Mary Jane because of what happens with Gwen Stacy. I really liked the whole story.
How did you find the physicality that a film like ‘The Amazing Spider-Man’ brings?
Emma Stone: Swinging and being thrown out of windows, things like that, they were all really fun because they required a sort of swinging motion – which I love! It’s great, I’m a rollercoaster fan, it’s all good (laughs). I didn’t really have to do any true physical ass kicking, it was more mental, Gwen Stacy’s a scientist so she’s great at concocting a serum that will help it all. But I had a lot of fun doing those things, it was great.
A key thread in ’The Amazing Spider-Man’ is Gwen Stacy and Peter Parker’s relationship….?
Emma Stone: Yeah. Gwen and Peter, you first see them interacting after he stands up for a kid. This is before he becomes Spider-Man. He stands up for a kid and she sees this kind of heroic quality in him already. But he’s really mysterious and he’s second in his class at Science, which is a huge thing for her as a valedictorian, she loves that he’s a sort of intellectual equal. I love that she’s a valedictorian and he’s just under her (laughs). She’s a smart cookie, which is great. And she falls in love with Peter Parker before realising he’s Spider-Man, before he tells her that he’s Spider-Man. She also becomes his confidant, she’s one of the only people in the world that knows this secret. It’s a pretty cool relationship.
Why do you think Peter Parker was attracted to Gwen Stacy? Do you think he detected her courage and other qualities that she might not know about?
Emma Stone: Yeah. I think that elements of Gwen and Gwen’s family life are something that Peter didn’t necessarily have, a sense of stability. I know Aunt May and Uncle Ben are a very stable environment for him, but he has abandonment issues. I mean, he was left by his parents when he was five so he doesn’t feel like he can be totally honest with Aunt May and Uncle Ben because they never really discuss the subject. You see that when Uncle Ben comes in and he’s like, “Sorry we don’t talk about this.” He doesn’t feel comfortable expressing the pain to them. I think that he sees someone steady in Gwen, and someone who can understand what it’s like to lose a father on a daily basis as you see in that bedroom scene. She doesn’t know if he’s going to come home every day, so she feels that sense of abandonment as well. I think they are so different but they also relate on the love of learning and things like that. I think he sees something in Gwen and becomes a confidante that he can trust.
Also, there’s an interesting relationship between the man Gwen Stacy loves in Peter Parker, and her father that she loves in Captain George Stacy?
Emma Stone: It’s very Romeo and Juliet, if you know what I mean (laughs). She’s going against her father to be with the man that she loves in Peter Parker. But ultimately I think he realises that he’s not a villain. It’s very interesting, I think that was really fun for Denis Leary and Andrew Garfield to play as well, to clash heads a bit.
I think there’s a lot in ‘The Amazing Spider-Man’ for both fans of the comic and people who aren’t aware of characters like Curt Connors….
Emma Stone: Definitely. As far as the fan base goes, I think what’s exciting is you’re seeing Peter Parker being orphaned at five. So you’re seeing how he ended being with Uncle Ben and Aunt May, you see how he starts living with them. And then you see his relationship with Dr. Curt Connors, which is kind of a father figure in his life. And then Gwen Stacy, that’s gotta be exciting because anybody who’s a fan of the comic books would be like, “Where is Gwen?! What is going on.” Because that was Peter Parker’s true love, first true love. That’s a very important part of even how he bonds with Mary Jane, which is ultimately what happened with Gwen. ‘The Amazing Spider-Man,‘ it’s fun! I think general people will really enjoy learning the story from the ground up as well. It’s a great ride.
What do you think director Marc Webb brought to ‘The Amazing Spider-Man’?
Emma Stone: I think that Marc clearly….I mean, for ’500 Days of Summer’ you can tell that Marc cares about love and he cares about humanity. And that was incredibly important for this movie, for ‘The Amazing Spider-Man.’ He prioritized the relationships just as much as the action. I know he had a million voices in his ear because a movie like this there’s a lot of opinions all the time on everything, and he would come in on Sundays to work on the scenes with us and break them down and build them all the way back up until we had the same scene that was written on the page but we had analyzed it to death. He was incredibly, incredibly kind and willing to work on that relationship. For my experience, I was very grateful that he came from that background.
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