Andrew Garfield starved self of food, sex for priest’s role in ‘Silence’: ‘I was celibate for 6 months’
Andrew Garfield recalled abstaining from food and sex for his priest role in Martin Scorsese’s 2016 film “Silence,” an experience he described as “pretty wild and trippy.”
The actor spoke about how such deprivation was part of the method-acting technique he did in preparation for the said role, in an episode of “WTF with Marc Maron” podcast last Monday, Aug. 22.
Method acting is an approach that “trains actors to use their physical, mental and emotional self in the creation of a character and stresses the way in which personal experience can fire the actors imagination,” as per Lee Strasberg Theatre and Film Institute.
“I had an incredibly spiritual experience. I did a bunch of spiritual practices every day; I created new rituals for myself; I was celibate for six months, and fasting a lot, because me and Adam [Driver] had to lose a bunch of weight anyway,” Garfield said, referring to one of his co-stars in the film.
“There were all the spiritual practices we got to do while we were praying, meditating, having all the intentions we had as those characters,” Garfield added. “I had some pretty wild, trippy experiences from starving myself of sex and food for that period of time.”
Garfield also disclosed that fellow actor Ryan Gosling was the one who inspired him to explore the acting technique, after the two of them did a screen test for a project in 2005. The “Spider-Man” actor then noted that “everything worked out” as he eventually found Gosling’s acting coach whom he did workshops with.
“I was overwhelmed. I was like, ‘This guy has figured something out. He’s doing something on a deeper level here,’” Garfield recounted. “It was like being in a scene with a wild animal where you don’t know whether he was going to kiss you or kill you. And you hook into that, and you’re like ‘Oh, I want to follow whatever that is.'”
Garfield recently took a break from acting to “recalibrate and reconsider” his next plans for his career. Before his acting hiatus, Garfield starred in the 2021 films “Spider-Man: No Way Home,” “Tick, Tick … Boom!”, “The Eyes of Tammy Faye” and the miniseries “Under the Banner of Heaven,” which was released last April. /ra
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