In the film, Dane DeHaan plays Harry Osborn aka the Green Goblin. During a roundtable interview, when asked what his initial conversations were with Director Marc Webb in developing the character Dane had a lot to say:
My whole thing about Harry the whole time was what I wanted to do with him and how I wanted to bring him into modern day and how I wanted to make him this kind of trust fund baby hipster kid. Cause to me that’s just where he exists … For me it’s an obvious fit and that was kind of what I was always bringing to the table. I think it’s ultimately what helped me get the role. Even in my test for it they were slicking everyone’s hair back and everyone was wearing these suits. I remember I sat down at the hair place and I was like ‘I don’t want you to slick my hair back’ and they were like ‘What? What’s going on?.’ I went into the costume place and I was like look ‘I don’t want to wear all this stuff that everyone else is wearing.’ When I walked into the test, I got there early so I could work with the costume people to put together something edgier, something cooler, something more modern day. And so that’s kind of what I was always presenting as what I was going to bring to the table. And Marc [and Jamie] on my first day on set definitely helped to me fine tune and find Harry and who Harry was, but in terms of the general characteristics of it. That’s just what I was always offering up.
Read on to see what else had to say about joining the mega franchise:
How did you prepare for your role?
Dane: For me it was all about the comics. These characters have been around for 50 years and they’re so many incarnations of them, whether it’s in comic books, or movies, cartoons, or whatever, and they’ve become mythological in their own sense. They are archetypes and they do exist within this universe of books that people have been buying for a very long time, telling age old stories that have lessons to be learned from them. So I just stuck with the comics and that universe I didn’t really get into any mythological metaphor of it.
Can you speak about collaborating with Andrew Garfield?
Dane: Andrew is amazing. He’s such a talented actor. He has such a deep understanding of who Spider-Man is and who Peter Parker is. I think he honors who he has been in the comic books and stuff like that … he shows up ready to go and he’s so talented and he makes the job easier knowing that you’re going to be on set with someone you can trust.
Dane: Well it’s fun you know and I think all that stuff really helps. It’s like wearing a mask. You look at yourself in the mirror and it’s like ‘I’m the Green Goblin.’ There’s no denying that. In that way, it’s a mask that you can hide behind and feel more free to just let it rip.
There have been so many super hero movies, why do you think people keep coming back to see these movies?
Dane: Well, again these stories have been around for so long and they used to just be in comic books and tons of people would buy them every week and read them. And now there’s four or five times a year when you’re able to experience these stories in a way that you never would have imagined you could have experienced them 50 years ago. Technology has come to a place that we can tell these stories and be these characters and you can almost feel like you’re there with them and that’s just so exciting and every day a new generation of people that will love these characters is born. They’re just universal. Like my manager took her two year old son to Disneyland the other day with somebody. She went on a ride and left her son with the person she was with and when she came back the kid was wearing Mickey Mouse ears with a Spider-Man head on it. And he picked it out himself … For whatever reason everyone gravitates towards Spider-Man. It’s just something that will always be there and people will always want to see.
Can you tell us about your James Dean biopic “Life”?
Dane: Yeah, I finished it a month ago. It was the biggest challenge of my life. James Dean I was introduced to his movies probably in acting school. He’s been one of my favorite actors. I’ve had a picture of him on my wall since college and it was just such a challenge to take this person that everybody has something that they think they know about James Dean. When you say to a person I’m playing James Dean in a movie they’ll tell you a fact about James Dean. And what I’ve found in researching him is at least 75% of the time the things that people tell you are wrong. Like it’s not true, it’s myth. He’s become such an icon and he’s icon to me and I thought things about him that weren’t true. So it became about – for lack of a better phrase – ‘Killing my Darlings,’ taking this guy from a hero and making him human and trying to embody that and it was a really big challenge.