Andrew Garfield has responded to the controversy surrounding remarks he made earlier this month about gay men.

The British actor, 33, was discussing his preparation for his role as a gay man living with Aids in the London revival of Tony Kushner’s Angels in America when said: “I am a gay man right now just without the physical act”.

Asked how he researched for the role of Prior Walter, Garfield had replied: “As far as I know, I am not a gay man. Maybe I’ll have an awakening later in my life, which I’m sure will be wonderful and I’ll get to explore that part of the garden, but right now I’m secluded to my area, which is wonderful as well.

“I adore it, but a big concern was what right do I have to play this wonderful gay role?”

Adding that he had seen “every single series” of drag queen reality show RuPaul’s Drag Race during his preparation for the show, he explained: “My only time off during rehearsals – every Sunday I would have eight friends over and we would just watch Ru.

“This is my life outside of this play. I am a gay man right now just without the physical act – that’s all.”

Garfield’s comments were criticised by some who accused The Amazing Spiderman star of stereotyping gay men.

Responding to the controversy, he told BBC’s Newsbeat: “That’s of course not what I meant at all.

“That discussion was about this play and how deeply grateful I am that I get to work on something so profound.

“It’s a love letter to the LGBTQ community. We were talking about, ‘How do you prepare for something so important and so big?’ and I was basically saying, ‘I dive in as fully as I possibly can.'”

Garfield continued: “My only longing is to serve and to keep the world spinning forward for the LGBTQ community in whatever way I’m meant to.”

“It’s important to a community that I feel so welcomed by.

“The intention [in my comments] was to speak to that, speak to my desire to play this part to the best of my ability and to fully immerse myself in a culture that I adore.”

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