Andrew Garfield Is Spider-Man

British actor confirmed as Peter Parker

It's been the casting announcement the world has been waiting for, but when it arrived here in Cancun just moments ago, it definitely came out of leftfield: Andrew Garfield, star of the upcoming The Social Network, has just been confirmed as the new Peter Parker. Which means, in case you're not aware, that he's the new Spider-Man.

Producers Avi Arad and Laura Ziskin, along with Spider-Man director Marc Webb, stepped out onto a stage at the Ritz-Carlton, Cancun, to announce the identity of their new Spidey, one of the most hotly-contested roles around at the moment. And, even though Garfield had been mentioned in relation to the role at one point, so had every young actor in Hollywood, so it was a real surprise when Garfield, here to promote The Social Network, stepped out.

At 26, Garfield seems to be older than the story of the Spidey reboot would call for, given that it's set during Peter Parker's high school years. But Garfield is remarkably fresh-faced, and should fit the role superbly. And, for anyone who's followed his burgeoning career since he appeared in Robert Redford's Lions For Lambs, it's no surprise. The kid can act.

And, of course, he's British, which means that we now have Batman, Professor X and Spider-Man. Oh, and Kick-Ass.

"Though his name may be new to many, those who know this young actor's work understand his extraordinary talents," said Webb in a statement. "He has a rare combination of intelligence, wit and humanity. Mark my words, you will love Andrew Garfield as Peter Parker."

Filming on the new Spider-Man will begin in December, with a release in 3D on July 3, 2012.