Andrew Garfield is about to tell what he confidently describes as a “very ShortList story”. He sets aside his plate of grilled beef and salad, and leaps up from the sofa in order to act it out properly.
“It was 2010, around the time of The Social Network,” he says, pacing the room. “I was being invited to all these LA parties, and three of my mates from home [Epsom, Surrey] came out for one. Everyone there was famous, and we didn’t know what to do, so we ended up creating a little square in the middle of the room, looking in at each other. We couldn’t think of anything to say, so my mate George says, ‘Let’s all say “rhubarb”.’ So we’re all just standing there, these four tall, awkward English boys, muttering ‘rhubarb’. And then at one point, oh my God…”
He breaks off to literally – this is no exaggeration – shake with laughter. “At one point, my mate James accidentally kissed Taylor Swift on the ear! We finally started talking to people, and as we were leaving Taylor Swift says, ‘Bye guys,’ and James leans in, but he doesn’t know if it’s a hug or what, so for some reason he just… kisses her on the ear.” More shaking. He regains composure for the final chapter. “Then at the end of the night – and I won’t explain how this happened – all four of us ended up dancing in pyjamas at Quincy Jones’s house.”