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Unread 2018-09-28, 10:48 AM   #176
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Ruben Fleischer Says It Was Challenging Developing Venom Without Spider-Man





Venom director Ruben Fleischer says he liked the challenge of creating a movie around the character without Spider-Man. In the comics, Venom is an alien symbiote which takes its powers from its hosts- the first one being Spider-Man. Peter Parker was able to separate himself from Venom, which then latched onto Eddie Brock who became a villain with some spider like abilities.

However, the film version cannot follow the same origin story because Marvel and Sony share the rights to Spider-Man. The character currently appears in the MCU where he is being played by Tom Holland. The Venom film does not take place in the MCU, but a seperate Sony Universe which is being filled out with a number of movies based around Spider-Man villains. This meant the team had to get creative when it came to developing Venom's backstory.

Durning the press junket for Venom, Fleischer spoke with Screen Rant about how he overcame some of the struggles in creating a movie without a key component. After all, the question on most fans' minds when the movie was announced was how Sony would create a movie about Venom without include Eddie Brock's greatest foe and reason him having these powers in the first place. Fleischer said:

It was definitely challenging figuring out how to make a movie with a character that's defined by Spider-Man without Spider-Man. It's those creative challenges that allow you to really come up with something original and different. The thing that I'm most proud of about this movie is I think it feels different than other superhero movies.




The marketing for the Venom has reflected this idea that the movie is not your typical superhero story too. The film's taglines are, "Embrace Your Inner Anti-Hero" and "The World Has Enough Superheroes". This version will appear to show Eddie Brock (Tom Hardy) as more than just a villian. Fleischer also noted that audiences have already seen a "very true to the comics version of Venom" in Sam Raimi's Spider-Man 3. In that film, Topher Grace was the bad guy- just without much menace. Since the earliest trailers, it's been apparent that Venom would show a much different version of the character. Without having any direct ties to Spider-Man, the film could create its own universe. Says Fleischer:

We kind of took the perspective of the more Ultimate universe version of this movie. We can re-imagine the origin that's not tied to Spider-Man where the alien comes to our planet by whatever means we decide and however Eddie (Brock) and the alien meet up.

For producer Avi Arad, this ability to create a story without Spider-Man was "liberating". Without Peter Parker the film becomes Eddie's story. "Eddie Brock was there before what happened at the Daily Bugle. Eddie Brock was there as a kid. There's a whole mythology about Eddie Brock", Arad explains.

Despite their inability to use Spider-Man, the filmmakers seem confident in their vision for Venom. Hopefully fans will react as positively and embrace whatever changes had to be made to the character's origin. It will be interesting to see a different backstory for the character, one perhaps that is a bit darker than ones previously seen. Plus, just because Spider-Man isn't in this movie, doesn't mean he won't appear in the next one.
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Unread 2018-09-28, 10:50 AM   #177
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How Tom Hardy Created The Voice of Venom





Venom star Tom Hardy has revealed his main influences while creating the character’s distinctive voice. Fans have waited a long time to see the character of Venom properly portrayed on the big screen. Venom’s previous appearance in Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man 3 in 2007 proved massively disappointing, which was partly a result of the studio forcing Raimi to use the character against his will. Topher Grace’s performance also came under fire by certain sections of the fanbase.

Venom's Spider-Man 3 appearance proved such a letdown that a spinoff written by Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick (Deadpool) was abandoned. The character was set to make an appearance in The Amazing Spider-Man 3, which would have set up a Venom solo movie. Channing Tatum expressed interest in playing the villain, but once Sony and Marvel made an agreement to share Spider-Man, those plans were canceled.

Tom Hardy’s take on Venom is coming to the big screen next week and is set to be a much more faithful adaptation of the popular villain. Hardy plays both Eddie Brock and Venom, with numerous trailers and clips giving audiences a preview of Hardy’s distinct vocals for Brock’s alter ego. The actor revealed his main influences on Venom’s voice during an interview with Screen Rant.


Screen Rant: Tom, great job on that Venom voice. it was amazing. Where did you come up with that?

Tom Hardy: Redman, Busta Rhymes, and James Brown as ingredients and then I played with it to create the fusion of sort of what you hear, which sounds nothing like that, but initially was like vibe or heartbeat that I wanted to bring to it. That kind of bombastic, playful, like dark, witty, clever, you know, honest, but with a power familiar friendly sound which is palatable.




Hardy is famous for giving all of his characters a distinct voice, with arguably the most famous example being his take on Bane in The Dark Knight Rises. Venom is no different, and Hardy appears to be having a great time playing both sides of the character. His vocal influences wouldn't be the most obvious choices for a comic book villain role, but if nothing else it can’t be denied the actor likes to think outside the box.

Venom is currently tracking to be a big success for Sony, but fans are disappointed by the studio’s recent confirmation that the movie will be PG-13. The movie had previously been reported by cast and crew to be a hard R take on the source material, and it would play up the body horror element of the concept. It seems Sony would like to make sure the movie is tonally more in line with Marvel’s cinematic universe instead, which could lead to future crossovers between Venom and other Marvel characters.
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Unread 2018-09-28, 10:56 AM   #178
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Ruben Fleischer Believes A Spider-Man vs. Venom Face-Off Is Inevitable





Venom director Ruben Fleischer thinks that a face-off between Venom and Spider-Man is inevitable. Tom Hardy makes his superhero film return as Eddie Brock aka. Venom in the upcoming Sony Pictures comic book film that will launch their own cinematic universe focusing on Spider-Man tie-in characters. The movie boasts a star-studded cast including Michelle Williams as Anne Weying, Riz Ahmed as Dr. Carlton Drake, Scott Haze as Roland Treece, and Jenny Slate as Dora Skirth.

It's been confusing whether or not Venom will be connected to Tom Holland's Spider-Man, who now inhabits in the MCU. Marvel's Kevin Feige was pretty definitive about not having plans of Venom crossing over to the MCU despite contradicting statements from Sony former executive Amy Pascal. Given this, fans were skeptical about making a Venom film without the presence of the web-slinging hero, given that their stories are tightly intertwined. Luckily, it seems like Sony was able to craft a solid standalone that explains well how the symbiote comes to Earth and bond with Brock. However, that's not to say that Spider-Man will never get entangled with Brock.

Speaking with Screen Rant during the junket interview for the upcoming Sony film, Fleischer candidly talked about the possibility that Venom and Spider-Man square off in the future. But regardless of his opinion, he emphasizes that he's not the one to decide about these things.

Ruben Fleischer: I think we laid the ground work in this film for a pretty fun match-up in the future so I think that'll be a really exciting story to explore, but I'd be lying if I didn't say I'd love to see him face-off against Spider-Man at some point. It feels like that's inevitable and I know that Tom Holland's excited about it, and I know that Tom Hardy's excited about it so it's just a question of when and where, I guess. That seems like the natural evolution.


Ruben Fleischer: I don't know about that. I do know that we want to see these character interact. As to the semantics as to where it takes place it's not for me to decide but it feels like there's a way everyone can co-exist in it in a satisfying way.





Interestingly, Fleischer said that they "laid the ground work" for the two's eventual match-up which means that people at Sony are really pushing for it to happen. Venom's PG-13 rating was reportedly intentional in the hopes that a crossover will happen down the line; considering the MCU tends to keep their properties kid-friendly given that they're under the Disney umbrella, the Hardy-starrer being R-rated would make this dream more improbable. However, exciting as that may sound, it's also a cause for concern should the foreshadowing in Venom turn out to be overdone. Building Brock's character should be their number one priority and shouldn't be overshadowed by the mere promise that he's going to meet Peter Parker someday. This way, if the clamored crossover doesn't go through, Sony still has a well-made solo film that can stand on its own and can kick-off their own separate shared universe.

Considering that just several years ago, no one would've thought that Spider-Man will eventually join the MCU, so who's to say that Venom meeting the wall-crawling hero won't ever happen on the big screen? If Venom becomes a critical and mass success, then perhaps Feige will be more willing to cooperate in pulling the crossover off. But at this point, it seems like both Sony and Marvel Studios are keeping things in limbo.
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Unread 2018-09-28, 03:19 PM   #179
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Venom Director Ruben Fleischer Shares Some Fun (Non-Spoilery) Easter Eggs





Ruben Fleischer, director of Venom, has long promised that the film is absolutely full of Easter eggs. A comic book fan in his own right, Fleischer has always said he hopes this is a movie that fellow fans will truly appreciate.

The trailers for Venom have stressed that the film is remarkably comic-book-accurate, right down to lifting entire scenes or lines of dialogue straight from the comics. Amusingly enough, one of the most controversial lines of dialogue in the second trailer - "Eyes, lungs, pancreas ... so many snacks, so little time" - was pulled straight from The Amazing Spider-Man #374. According to Fleischer, anyone familiar with the original Venom comic books will recognize a lot more than just the one line.

Related: How Tom Hardy Created The Voice of Venom
Naturally, many of the Easter eggs would serve as spoilers. Speaking to Fleischer at the Venom press junket, though, Screen Rant had an opportunity to ask if there are any he can reveal at this stage. He was surprisingly forthcoming, revealing a whole host of minor Easter eggs:

"The name of the building he lives in is called the Schuller building. Randy Schuller is the name is the fan who suggested the black suit for Spider-Man. There's this famous story where he got $50 for suggesting the black suit and that's what spawned the Venom origin. The law firm that Anne Weying works for is Michelinie & McFarlane. Eddie's texting somebody at one point, can I get a job, and that's the editor of the Daily Globe, Barney Bushkin. We tried to weave them in. Even just trying to acknowledge his backstory in New York for fans of the comics. There was a scandal with Eddie Brock. He tried to expose the Sin-Eater and that lead to his demise and being fired from his newspaper so we didn't say it directly, that was a nod to the comics."



Until 2007, the identity of the fan who came up with the idea of the black suit was a mystery. Then CBR's Brian Cronin discussed the history of the black suit in his "Comic Book Legends Revealed" column, and Randy Schueller wrote in to confirm that he was in fact the anonymous fan. Back in the early '80s, Marvel had run a competition for aspiring writers and artists; Schueller applied with the suggestion of a new costume, a black stealth-suit with a blood-red spider-symbol. Marvel bought the idea for $220, and the rest was history. Ironically enough, Schueller admitted that he was never really enamored with the direction his idea took. "I was never a fan of the costume-turned-villain idea," he noted.

David Michelinie and Todd McFarlane were the co-creators of Eddie Brock, and oddly enough without McFarlane Venom would never have been born. As he noted on social media, McFarlane didn't really like the black suit, he preferred the traditional Spider-Man costume. Marvel agreed to bring the red-and-blue outfit back in Amazing Spider-Man #300 if McFarlane signed up for the book, and he agreed. The only problem was deciding what to do with Spider-Man's dark costume. McFarlane's solution to that dilemma was Venom, a character he never expected to become so popular.
Finally, the reference to Barney Bushkin is a deep cut into Spider-Man lore. He was a rival of J. Jonah Jameson, and became owner of the Daily Globe newspaper. Bushkin briefly hired Peter Parker as a photographer for a while, and made the mistake of publishing an ill-advised story by Eddie Brock. Sadly, Bushkin's journalistic career hit the rocks when the decline of the newspaper industry led to the Daily Globe going out of business. He still crops up as a background character every now and then, working on radio alongside - of all people - his old rival Jameson.

It's interesting to see how carefully Fleischer has attempted to weave his Easter eggs into Venom's narrative. Given these are only the ones he's willing to share before the film's release, no doubt comic book lovers will find a whole lot more when the movie comes out next week.
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Unread 2018-09-28, 03:25 PM   #180
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'Venom' Was Never Going to be Rated-R




Sony's Venom movie was always intended to be appropriate for a PG-13 audience.
The film's executive producers Avi Arad and Matt Tolmach, along with director Ruben Fleischer, revealed as much while talking to ComicBook.com. Though the Marvel movie contains intense, dark sequences and a dose of crude language, a business decision lead the filmmakers away from an R-rating which could discourage families and younger audiences from the box office.


"To me, R is not a consideration," Arad said. "Can you get away with not R so that other people can see? So that younger people can see? I made an animated show. There was a lot of Venom in there. It was in '94. There's no reason to put in violence. To define what Venom is as violence. He's not. He's the lethal protector, which is a very different thing. We want to be really true to the comics. Today, in CGI and stuff, we can make Venom bite your head. But we don't have to show the head going side to side like, 'that actually tastes good.' It's irrelevant. What's relevant is that you finally understood, is that a bad guy? Yeah."
Despite what some fans might start to believe as rumors swirl across social media and in corners of Reddit threads, there never was and never will be a version of the film which contained heavy amounts of graphic violence. "There isn't some phantom version of the movie," Tolmach explained. "Everyone is asking us that. Is there an R-rated cut sitting there? There isn't. We came into this production and the development of the movie wanting to make a movie that was true to Venom, true to the comics, and true to the character, but at the same time is a movie that 13-year-olds, 14-year-olds can see. We had to push right up against it. We're 15+ in England. It's not like we just wanted to make a family film. We wanted to push it as hard as we could, but also to make it accessible. That was always the goal."

From director Ruben Fleischer, the message was the same, citing inspiration from one of the most renowned comic book movies in history. "We only ever talked about this movie as being PG13," Fleischer said. "What I've said in the past is that we wanted to push the violence to the hilt. The Dark Knight was always a huge reference point for me, personally, just as far as how far you could take a PG-13 because that movie they put a pen through a guy's forehead so I figure if you can do that in a PG-13 movie you can bite some heads off."
Ultimately, Fleischer stands by the film he crafted within PG-13 parameters. "I'm proud to say I think I accomplished, was to take it to the full limit," he said. "I feel like we don't compromise Venom in any real way. He's as aggressive as fans could possibly hope for, I think."
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Unread 2018-09-30, 02:58 PM   #181
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VENOM's Two After-Credits Scenes Have Been Revealed - MAJOR SPOILERS

Venom doesn't hit theaters until Friday but it's now been revealed that the Marvel movie actually has TWO after-credits scenes and you can find the details on both of them after the jump...




We're just days away from finally being able to see if Venom lives up to expectations. However, with the review embargo not set to lift until after it's already arrived in a number of international locations on Wednesday night, that doesn't exactly bode well despite initial reports that it will break a number of October box office records (which is easily done seeing as competition is pretty much nonexistant).

There's a lot riding on Sony's first live-action Spider-Verse movie as they're hoping that it will kick off an entire Cinematic Universe made up of names like Morbius the Living Vampire, Black Cat, and Kraven the Hunter.

With that in mind, it's no wonder Venom's after-credits scenes tease the future and set the stage for some pretty big things down the line. It goes without saying that we're heading into serious spoiler territory here, so stop reading now if you don't want to have these two big moments ruined before checking out the movie when it hits theaters later this week. If you're not too bothered, though, click on the "View List" button below to check them out.

After-Credits Scene #1



Despite becoming Venom, it sounds like Eddie Brock will continue his career as a journalist as he reportedly heads to San Quentin prison in this scene for an exclusive interview with Cletus Kasady who is indeed played by Woody Harrelson.

It's said that the actor is wearing a ginger wig and looks a little like Pennywise the Clown without the makeup, while the deranged inmate then asks if he wants to hear about his stint as a serial killer...and if he wants to hear about the "carnage." That's where it ends and something presumably happens between then and the sequel for Cletus to gain a symbiote...

After-Credits Scene #2



We don't have specifics on what this scene entails but it reportedly comes right at the end of the movie and "Meanwhile, In Another Spider-Verse..." flashes up on the screen and is followed by a new look at Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse. It could be a new trailer or just a scene taken from the movie but this was always more likely than a Spider-Man: Far From Home sneak peek.
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Unread 2018-09-30, 04:15 PM   #182
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Video URL: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e9jQIL47SP0
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Unread 2018-10-01, 10:26 AM   #183
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Tom Hardy: 'My favourite 40 minutes of Venom were cut from the film'

Marvel fans may be looking forward to the release of the new superhero movie Venom – but for its star, Tom Hardy, it will be a bittersweet experience.

In an interview with ComicsExplained, Hardy said that all his favourite scenes had ended up on the cutting-room floor. When asked "What was your favourite scene to film?" he said: "Things that aren’t in this movie."

The Taboo star continued, in a possibly tongue-in-cheek reply: "There are, like, 30 to 40 minutes' worth of scenes that aren’t in this movie... all of them. Mad puppeteering scenes, dark comedy scenes. You know what I mean? They just never made it in."

The film, a spin-off from the Spider-Man franchise, tells the origin story of the supervillain Venom, a symbiotic alien creature which takes over the body of a journalist (played by Hardy), and kills its enemies by biting off their heads.
The film's executive producer Matt Tolmach has poured cold water on rumours that the film's most shocking scenes were cut to ensure it would receive a PG-13 certificate in the US.

"There isn't some phantom version of the movie," Tolmach told comicbook.com last week. "Everyone is asking us that. Is there an R-rated cut sitting there? There isn't."
"We only ever talked about this movie as being PG-13," director Ruben Fleisher added. "What I've said in the past is that we wanted to push the violence to the hilt. The Dark Knight was always a huge reference point for me, personally, just as far as how far you could take a PG-13."
The Dark Knight, the 2008 Batman film, received a 12A certificate in the UK but prompted complaints from both Labour and Conservative MPs, with former Conservative leader Iain Duncan Smith claiming the "relentlessly violent" film was not suitable for children.

Fleisher said he believed he had made a similarly boundary-pushing film. "I'm proud to say [that what] I think I accomplished was to take it to the full limit," he said. "I feel like we don't compromise Venom in any real way. He's as aggressive as fans could possibly hope for, I think."
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Unread 2018-10-01, 12:04 PM   #184
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Sony's Leaked Emails Reveal THIS Venom Was Always The Plan



The leaked Sony emails reveal that Venom hasn't changed quite as much over the years as we'd perhaps have believed. Avi Arad has been interested in developing a Venom movie for over a decade now, and his fondest dreams are finally coming true. On the surface, the film has changed shape substantially; after several attempts, by 2014 Sony envisioned the spinoff as part of Andrew Garfield's Amazing Spider-Man franchise. They initially hired Alex Kurtzman as director, but he was replaced by Ruben Fleischer. For all these changes, though, there's strong evidence that the overall shape of the movie has remained pretty much the same.

Sony was hacked back in Christmas 2014, and a wealth of email correspondence was dumped online. That included details of exec discussions about the future of the Spider-Man franchise, including details for more films in The Amazing Spider-Man series and even the proposed deal between Marvel Studios and Sony Pictures that would ultimately see the wall-crawler join the MCU. These leaked emails also hint at the studio's original ideas for Venom.

Here, we'll look at those basic ideas and show how they laid the foundation for the final theatrical cut of Venom. As we'll show, the core concept of Venom was established all the way back in 2014 - and the finished product seems very true to Sony's initial vision.

SONY'S PLANS FOR A SPIDER-LESS VENOM IN THE EARLY 2010S


Avi Arad had always believed that Venom had the potential to be a box office hit for Sony. It was Arad who pushed Sam Raimi into introducing Venom in 2007's Spider-Man 3, and he publicly admitted to considering a possible spinoff film for the tongue-slavering symbiote. There was one simple reason Arad loved Venom: the symbiote is popular was with kids and teenagers. Arad was an executive producer on the 1990s Spider-Man animated series, and he'd noticed how the character seemed to resonate. As the years passed, his instincts continued to suggest that Venom would be a major win. In one email from early November 2014, Arad pointed to the Toys 'R' Us circulars as evidence; Disney Infinity's advertising featured Venom, and he cited that as evidence even Marvel and Disney knew the character appealed to a younger demographic.

By 2014, Arad and Amy Pascal were pushing for the Spider-Man franchise to change shape. Taking a tip from Marvel Studios, they aimed to create an entire cinematic universe centered around Andrew Garfield's Spider-Man. First up was a Sinister Six film, heavily set up in The Amazing Spider-Man 2; Sony planned that to be followed by a dedicated Venom movie, which they initially planning to release sometime in 2017. It would only be after these two movies that The Amazing Spider-Man 3 would release. The potential scale of the franchise is hinted at in an email from Juan Capdet. He proposed an ambitious slate of Spider-Man spinoffs, ranging from Venom to Kraven the Hunter to Black Cat. In his view, the movies should build up towards an Avengers-style crossover featuring Carnage as the main villain. However, it's unclear how seriously Sony took his suggestions; there's no email trail beyond the initial pitch, which was at least shared among key figures in the studio. Presumably, they took the discussions offline.

Venom was originally intended to link into the Amazing Spider-Man films, but with something of a modernized origin. Several Sony figures pointed to the Ultimate Comics version, where the Venom symbiote was a genetically engineered protoplasmic "suit" designed by Richard Parker and Eddie Brock Sr. Even at this stage, Arad was convinced that origin story could be sufficiently rewritten to remove Spider-Man. Pascal, for her part, wasn't so sure; she felt the symbiote's interaction with Peter Parker was a key part in its story. Interestingly, there are a couple of email threads in which Pascal told other Sony staff about Venom's supporting characters, most notably his ex-wife Ann Weying and Flash Thompson's Agent Venom. Sony clearly felt both these characters had some sort of potential.


VENOM IS NOW THE LAUNCH OF THE SPIDER-VILLAINS UNIVERSE (BUT WAS ALWAYS PART OF IT)

It's actually quite remarkable how little Sony's plans for Venom have changed since those 2014 leaks, especially considering that the center of the Spider-Man franchise as a whole has since been absolutely revitalized. Shortly after the leak, Sony and Marvel agreed to an unprecedented deal that has brought Tom Holland's Peter Parker into the MCU: Sony makes the Spider-Man films in the shared universe, while Marvel can use Spidey in teamups. Sony is still able to produce films centered around secondary Spider-Man characters alongside this, but they aren't able to tie them into the Spider-Man films themselves. That reshapes their Spider-villains cinematic universe quite dramatically, with Venom serving as its launchpad.

For all that's the case, though, so many of Sony's ideas seem to be rooted in discussions back in 2014. The emails showed a lot of discussion about a female Spider-Man character, for example; that was presumably Silk, a hero created by Dan Slott back in 2014 and whose film is now known to be in the early stages of preproduction. Juan Capdet's email references both a Kraven and a Black Cat film; while he was pitching for a universe that included Spider-Man, it's interesting to note that both movies are in the works. Other spinoffs have featured characters tied to the Maximum Carnage event, suggesting Sony may well be building up to the crossover movie Capdet suggested (possibly with post-credits scenes).


The only real difference is that Sinister Six has been dropped. Curiously enough, though, not all Sony figures appear to have been convinced that film was a sensible one to go for anyway; in one email Pascal hints at being unsure whether or not it would work. It's possible this idea will be used in the MCU.

VENOM WAS ALWAYS GOING TO BE PG-13

"Kids love Venom," Avi Arad recently explained to Vulture. "It's something about it that attracts the anti-hero sensibility." It was exactly the same point Arad had been expressing privately for years, the point he was making when he noted Venom's prominence in the Toys 'R' Us circular back in 2014. Given that's the case, it's no surprise Arad has now revealed he never believed an R-rating was really an option for Venom. "There's no reason to put in violence," he explained. "To define what Venom is as violence. He's not... Today, in CGI and stuff, we can make Venom bite your head. But we don't have to show the head going side to side like, 'that actually tastes good.' It's irrelevant. What's relevant is that you finally understood, is that a bad guy?"

That doesn't mean the film will be your typical Marvel fare, though. Even back in 2014, emails suggest Sony was toying with a hard PG-13, one that pushed the boundaries of the superhero franchise a little bit further. That does indeed seem to be the approach the studio is ultimately taking with Venom, with Ruben Fleischer pointing to The Dark Knight as an example of how far you can go. "They put a pen through a guy's forehead," he pointed out, "So I figure if you can do that in a PG-13 movie you can bite some heads off."

There is some evidence that Sony considered filming R-rated cuts of some of their films. Certainly, that was part of Juan Capdet's pitch for Maximum Carnage; he suggested it could be "hard PG-13 with the possibility of an unrated bloodier version for home entertainment." While Sony has teased that kind of idea in public, they don't appear to have taken it too seriously, instead using it to toy with viewers.

VENOM'S STORY HAS CHANGED - BUT STILL HAS SIMILARITIES


As we've noted, Sony originally considered using the Ultimate Comics origin of Venom, where the symbiote was a genetically engineered creature. But even that origin story is tied strongly to Spider-Man. With the studio unable to integrate the wall-crawler into the narrative, they've been forced to take a different approach. They've heavily adapted ideas from the Venom: Lethal Protector and Planet of the Symbiotes plots, telling a tale where an alien spaceship containing symbiotes comes crashing to Earth. The labs have remained part of the plot, although they've been tied to the sinister Life Foundation rather than to Oscorp.
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There are only a sparse few emails discussing the potential plot and secondary characters of Venom; the project was in the early stages back in 2014, and no details had really been set in stone. What is interesting, though, is that Pascal dropped in a reference to Eddie Brock's ex-wife, Ann Weying. She'll be an important secondary character in the Venom film, played by Michelle Williams. Pascal's brief email notes that Weying became a symbiote herself, She-Venom, so it's possible that could fit into Sony's future plans for the love of Eddie's life.
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While many view the Amazing Spider-Man attempt at Venom as being replaced by the new movie, it's really just an evolution. Indeed, nowhere is this more obvious than in the release date: the original proposition for Venom eyed a 2017 release date, eventually pushed back to early 2018. In reality, Sony was just a few months out.
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Unread 2018-10-01, 06:45 PM   #185
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New 'Venom' TV Spot Teases Beginning of a Terrible Friendship

Something went wrong. Please make sure you added the video correctly.

Video URL: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FYTW-pjf2NA


The latest Venom TV spot highlights the nightmarish anit-hero's power set, while also teasing the dual-minded nature of its protagonist, Eddie Brock / Venom - both roles being played by star Tom Hardy. Watch the new footage above, and we'll break it down, below!
The line that will certainly stick out in this latest TV spot is no doubt the Venom symbiote telling Eddie that this their origin story is "the beginning of a terrible friendship." It's another off-beat line of dialogue from the script by Scott Rosenberg, Jeff Pinker, Kelly Marcel and Will Beall, which has already been gaining notice - and not always for the best reasons. Even though this Venom movie pulls some iconic lines from the comics (that "turd in the wind" quote), they still seem somewhat awkward and clunky in delivery. The same goes for this "terrible friendship" line; it may work in the comics, but in a live-action movie it's questionable if it works as effectively.
At the time of writing this, Venom is gearing up for its opening weekend premiere. While the early opening box office projections and advanced ticket sales seem strong, the real test will be when the first official Venom social media reactions and review scores start being released online in the twenty-four hours. If the early critical reviews and word-of-mouth aren't that strong, it wouldn't be a good look, but it may not be all that much of a factor in deterring the film's performance. The movie is currently being crowned as one of the most anticipated movies of fall 2018, which could be enough momentum with the larger mainstream crowd to roll over any bad critical reviews, with the usual "critics don't know $!@#" claims from fans. The larger question is how the film will rank in importance with mainstream viewers, who may not be at all swayed by issues like how the film adapts the comic book lore, or whether it's connected to the larger Marvel Cinematic Universe (it's not), or how the smooth or not the dialogue is.
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Unread 2018-10-02, 08:36 AM   #186
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Venom Early Reactions: Tom Hardy's Movie Belongs In The 2000s





The first Venom reactions are now online. The initial idea for a feature-length film based on the iconic comic book character (not the alien suit), created by David Michelinie and Todd McFarlane, was suggested way back in the late-1990s. Unfortunately, despite a number of people being involved with the project since it was first proposed, New Line Cinema never got the movie off the ground. It wasn't until Sony Pictures squeezed Venom into Spider-Man 3 that fans finally got a live-action adaptation of the villain-turned-anti-hero.


Producer Avi Arad was responsible for Venom's inclusion in Sam Raimi's third and final Spider-Man movie. While he wanted to spinoff the character into a standalone movie in the late-2000s, it wasn't until recently that things finally started to fall into place. And now, Ruben Fleischer's live-action Venom movie, starring Tom Hardy as the eponymous character, with a script by Jeff Pinkner, Scott Rosenberg, and Kelly Marcel, is releasing in theaters this week. It's the first installment in Sony's new Marvel universe, which happens to be comprised entirely of Spider-Man villains, but the question is, does it live up to the hype?



Following the world premiere screening of Venom in Los Angeles, CA, today, the first batch of social media reactions from movie critics have started to appear online. Below are some SPOILER-FREE reactions. Take a look:

Mike Ryan -



Meg Downey -




Beatrice Verhoeven -


Brandon Davis -




Perri Nemiroff -


Tom Jorgensen -

It seems that Venom isn't an outright hit for Sony Pictures nor is it a dud like some were expecting (though it's clear that there are some critics who believe the movie is an unquestionable failure); it can sit right in the middle and possibly satisfy longtime comic book fans as well as general audiences who aren't familiar with the character. Considering how long the movie has been in development, not to mention the fact that quite a few of the people behind the camera were responsible for Sam Raimi's Spider-Man trilogy (including Spider-Man 3), it's not too surprising that the Venom adaptation may feel like it belongs in another era - specifically one prior to the modern comic book movie renaissance ignited by Christopher Nolan's The Dark Knight and Jon Favreau's Iron Man.

However, it's worth noting that these are merely reactions, not reviews. A more nuanced take on the movie should be expected from critics as the movie's release date nears. For now, Sony Pictures will be looking to see how Venom performs at the box office over its opening weekend, which will be indicative of the film's success. Plus, the future of Sony's new Marvel universe may be dependent on Venom's commercial success.
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Unread 2018-10-02, 12:27 PM   #187
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‘Venom’ is better than it has any right to be

A quality cast and a sense of humor perform heroics in Sony's new movie

hat happens when a cast of Oscar contenders like Tom Hardy, Riz Ahmed and Michelle Williams are turned loose to chew the scenery of a (seemingly wryly self-aware) B movie?
Audiences get “Venom,” the latest bid from Sony Pictures to create its own superhero mega-franchise now that storylines for the studio’s web-slinging centerpiece have merged into the cast of thousands populating Disney’s Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Audiences may remember the character Venom as the nemesis in “Spider-Man 3,” the last (and least) of the original Spider-Man movies directed by Sam Raimi and starring Tobey Maguire.
There are echoes of its cinematic predecessor in the current “Venom,” but instead of setting up the character of Eddie Brock, and his alter-ego, Venom, as a nemesis to Peter Parker and Spider-Man, the new reboot focuses solely on Brock.
A “loose cannon” in the reporting world, Brock’s bona fides as a righter of wrongs are established early in a montage sequence that has him reporting on the seedy underbelly of a stylized San Francisco, ruled by technology companies that have run more than slightly amok over the city’s population.
Brock’s nemesis, played by the Emmy award-winning British actor Riz Ahmed, is “Carlton Drake” a billionaire tech mogul whose wealth is built on the backs of the city’s poor. They serve as fodder for Drake’s experiments, meant to save humanity from destruction at the hands of disease, climate change and overpopulation. And they’re the focal point of Brock’s reporting.
Drake’s plans to save the world have a whiff of Elon Musk, as he fantasizes about extraterrestrial colonization, sending space ships up to explore other planets that may be suitable for human life — or asteroids that may be suitable for mining.
In these heady times where startups like SpaceX, Blue Origin and Planetary Resources are planning colonization and asteroid mining missions, the plot point isn’t as far-fetched as some might think. But the alien life-form known as a symbiote, which Drake’s crew of astronauts takes back for study and (human) experimentation, is still squarely in the realm of comic books.

Those symbiotes are what give the movie its propellant force, as Drake experiments on humans to try to find suitable hosts for the super-powered aliens (who feed on human organs) to bond with — thus creating a new super species that can survive the coming environmental apocalypse and ensuing space colonization.
Brock, while working to uncover the dastardly deeds of this mad scientist, becomes one of those unwitting hosts — and thus imbued with super powers, fights the good fight with the help of his former fiancée, in an unlikely turn for Michelle Williams, to save the earth, and himself.
With Ahmed forced to deliver clunkers like, “Oh my God, they’re beautiful!” when first confronted with the alien species; or “Release the drones!” during a particularly satisfying chase sequence where his minions are tracking an alien-infected Brock (made the more enjoyable for the wanton destruction of San Francisco), Venom could have been terrible.
But the movie seems to aim for the kind of tongue-in-cheek humor that made Deadpool a hit with audiences … and it mostly succeeds. Hardy delivers a performance that’s shot through with some great physical comedy and sight gags, and the levity goes a long way to lightening what could have been an exercise in morbidity given the darkness of an alien-infected, organ eating anti-hero at the movie’s core.

To be clear, Venom doesn’t quite hit the meta-movie high notes that made Deadpool a smash, but powered by the performances from Williams and Hardy (who seem to have chemistry) and a script that aims for humor and hijinks and (seemingly) embraces the camp within its source material, Sony should have a solid foundation on which to build a new superhero franchise.
And it needs one. As Spider-Man’s scripting swings off into the arms of Disney’s Marvel Cinematic Universe, Sony appears to be looking to some of the lesser-known corners and characters in the Spideyverse so it can write its own destiny. Next up for the studio is Morbius: the Living Vampire, which has landed Jared Leto in the lead role, according to recent reports.
Following on the heels of Disney’s surprise breakout hit with “Guardians of the Galaxy” and Fox’s big box office bonanza with “Deadpool” (both lesser known titles in the Marvel catalog), the practice of going with something a bit more off-the-beaten path when it comes to superhero sagas may not be a bad idea.
Perhaps Venom benefited from the extremely low expectations that had been set for it, but the movie managed to score big with the preview audience that attended last night’s premiere.
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Unread 2018-10-03, 11:03 AM   #188
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Venom Review: Tom Hardy's Superhero Movie is a Weirdly Fun Monster





VENOM IS CERTAINLY A FLAWED SUPERHERO MOVIE, BUT TOM HARDY'S PERFORMANCES AS EDDIE BROCK AND VENOM MAKE FOR A FUN AND ENTERTAINING RIDE.

After a false-start of kicking off a superhero movie franchise, Sony Pictures returns to launch a series of Spider-Man spinoffs starring secondary characters from the web-slinger's comic universe - but not the web-head himself. Venom is the first of these movies, though Sony has more in various stages of development. And, considering the studio's deal to share Spider-Man with Marvel Studios - so that Peter Parker can exist in the Marvel Cinematic Universe - Sony has positioned Venom and their other films as "adjuncts" to the successful 10-year franchise. Still, it seems the future of Sony's spinoff Marvel movie series depends largely on the success or failure of Venom and its star. Venom is certainly a flawed superhero movie, but Tom Hardy's performances as Eddie Brock and Venom make for a fun and entertaining ride.

Venom follows investigative journalist Eddie Brock (Hardy), who enjoys a good life in San Francisco, living with his fiancé Anne Weying (Michelle Williams), leading his own show on a news network, and being generally happy. However, Eddie betrays the trust of his fiancé and ignores explicit instructions from his boss in order to go after the genius, Elon Musk-type leader of the Life Foundation, Carlton Drake (Riz Ahmed), during an interview. As a result, Eddie is fired from his show and essentially blacklisted from working in journalism, and Anne breaks up with him. Months later, Eddie is still down and out, unable to find a job or lead a fulfilling life - that is, until he's approached by Life Foundation scientist Dr. Dora Skirth (Jenny Slate).



All while Eddie's life had been going downhill, Drake had been experimenting with alien creatures he called symbiotes. The symbiotes must bond with an Earthen host in order to survive on the planet, and Drake means to fuse symbiotes with humans as a way to survive in space - though more often than not, the symbiotes kill the human hosts. When Dr. Skirth sneaks Eddie into the Life Foundation, one of the symbiotes named Venom bonds with Eddie and the pair help to keep each other alive. But, when Venom informs Eddie of a plot by another symbiote - Riot, who bonds with Drake - that endangers Earth, Venom and Eddie must set aside their differences and work together to take down Riot.


Venom has clear intentions to be a buddy comedy set within a superhero universe and, for the most part, the relationship between Eddie and Venom is the most successful aspect of the film. The script - written by Jeff Pinkner, Scott Rosenberg and Kelly Marcel from a story by Pinker and Rosenberg - works to flesh out the dynamic between Eddie and Venom, but it often sacrifices actual development for a cheap joke (jokes that, admittedly, do get a laugh). For its part, the script for Venom recognizes the outright wild premise of the comic book character and leans into the weirdness enough to really have some fun (though some viewers may be left wanting even more weirdness). Even still, Venom does have quite a few problems when it comes to the script - some of the dialogue ranges from clunky to laughably bad. Somehow, though, it all adds to Venom's charm.

Where the movie is the most confused, perhaps, is between the performances of Hardy and Ahmed. There is certainly meant to be a fundamental difference between Eddie and Drake - one is a man of the people journalist, while the other is a smooth-talking grandiose businessman/scientist. But much of Venom feels as if Hardy and Ahmed are in two different movies. While Hardy leans into the weirdness, Ahmed appears to be giving a truly earnest appearance even with all that's going on around him - and the earnestness does him no favors when he delivers lines that are meant to be serious and come off more ridiculously silly. However memorable Ahmed's Drake is, though, is all down to the actor since the character isn't well developed by any means. But that's to be expected of a superhero movie that focuses more on developing its main hero - and in this case, that means Venom.


Director Ruben Fleischer's version of Venom undoubtedly benefits from the movie being focused on the character, rather than the character being introduced in a Spider-Man film - as was the case with Sam Raimi's much-maligned Spider-Man 3. This Venom doesn't venture into the R-rated violence some fans may have been hoping for, but there is action to be had in Fleischer's movie. Unfortunately, while there are cool moments amid the various action scenes in which Fleischer experiments with showcasing Venom's abilities, especially when Venom and Eddie are first bonding, many of the sequences are overlong and could have been cut down. Since the movie was also tasked with establishing the relationship between the symbiote and Eddie, which is undoubtedly key to the success of a Venom movie, more focus and development of their relationship couldn't have hurt. Truly, the moments when Hardy-as-Eddie is interacting with Venom - and then reacting to the world around them - are unique and funny enough that they could have made for an entertaining movie even without the action set pieces.

Altogether, Venom is a fast-paced superhero movie that feels out of place in the current landscape of comic book adaptations, largely because it combines aspects that have been popular over the last two decades and attempts to modernize them. While there are elements of superhero films from the 2000s (which are undoubtedly remnants from the movie's long development process), Venom also has a sense of levity that's closer to recent releases in the genre like Deadpool and Thor: Ragnarok. To be sure, Venom is much messier than Deadpool or Thor: Ragnarok; its plodding action sequences and clunky dialogue will no doubt turn off many viewers. But there will also be those who wholly enjoy the mess that is Venom, and embrace its flaws in order to enjoy the parts of it that work - including the charming relationship between human Eddie Brock and the sharp-toothed, long-tongued symbiote at the film's center.




As a whole, then, Venom is so-bad-it's-good in a way that seems to already assure its status as a future "cult" favorite (insofar as a mainstream movie can be a cult favorite). Whether that will be good enough for Sony to continue on with their Spider-Man spinoff franchise remains to be seen, but Venom is undoubtedly good enough to be an entertaining time at the theater.
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Unread 2018-10-03, 11:08 AM   #189
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Venom Early Reviews: Tom Hardy's Movie Is An Incredibly Fun Mess


Read Screen Rant's Venom Movie Review Here!

The first batch of Venom reviews are now online. One of the most talked-about movies of the year is undoubtedly Sony Pictures' Venom, which is directed by Zombieland and Gangster Squad helmer Ruben Fleischer and stars Tom Hardy as the titular character, Eddie Brock. It's a passion project that the studio has been trying to get off the ground for several years now, but it wasn't until late last year that it finally moved into production.

Going up against critical darling A Star Is Born at the domestic box office, Venom is looking to attract the attention of fans of the source material (and character) as well as general audiences who are interested in seeing a different type of comic book movie, one that doesn't place its focus on superheroes, per se. Instead, the film follows a journalist who becomes an anti-hero after transforming into the Venom by coming into contact with an alien symbiote. While Venom is one of the most anticipated movies of the fall, the question on everyone's mind is, is it good?


Sony Pictures has now lifted the embargo for Venom ahead of the movie's worldwide debut this Friday (or Thursday, for select showings), and the first reviews are now starting to flood online. Below are SPOILER-FREE excerpts along with links back to the respective full reviews.



Molly Freeman, Screen Rant - 3/5


Venom is so-bad-it's-good in a way that seems to already assure its status as a future "cult" favorite (insofar as a mainstream movie can be a cult favorite). Whether that will be good enough for Sony to continue on with their Spider-Man spinoff franchise remains to be seen, but Venom is undoubtedly good enough to be an entertaining time at the theater.

Todd McCarthy, THR - No score

The only startling moment in the thoroughly irredeemable Venom that makes you sit up and take notice comes at the 71-minute mark, when the sight of a disheveled, stubbly, sweaty and bloated Tom Hardy jolts you with the realization that here is the perfect actor to one day play Harvey Weinstein. For that insight and that insight alone, this film is valuable. Notwithstanding the guaranteed profits stemming from any film with the Marvel brand attached to it, those involved should reflect upon the truth of the film's advertising tagline: “The world has enough Superheroes.”

Michael Nordine, IndieWire - B

The world may have enough superheroes, but it doesn’t have enough good movies about them. “Venom” goes a small way toward changing that, even though it’s technically about a supervillain — or, if we’re being generous, an antihero. News that the fan-favorite Spider-Man antagonist was receiving a standalone film of his own starring Tom Hardy was greeted warmly by those who harbor a childhood fondness for the character despite being generally indifferent toward comic books and who have yet to grow weary of Hardy’s incoherent mumbling (read: this writer), but uncertainty abounds with these enterprises. For every “Deadpool,” there’s at least one “Fantastic Four.”

Alonso Duralde, The Wrap - No score

If you replaced Tom Hardy for Steve Martin in “All of Me,” and switched out Lily Tomlin for a wad of chewed-up black licorice, you’d have “Venom.” The difference being that “All of Me” is a charming screwball comedy, and “Venom” is the kind of comic-book movie that people who hate comic-book movies think that all comic-book movies are like. Leaping from plot point to plot point without the hindrance of logic or characters, this big-screen return of the legendary Spider-Man nemesis — last seen in the franchise-hobbling “Spider-Man 3” — is aggressively loud and stupid without being much fun at all. It exists as a waste of time (although, one hopes, a sizable payday) for some very talented actors, and it’s proof that even Marvel doesn’t always get it right.



Owen Gleiberman, Variety - No score


In “Venom,” the spectacular but mostly derivative and generically plotted new comic-book origin story (it’s the first installment of the Sony Universe of Marvel Characters), Tom Hardy is afflicted with an otherworldly force that invades his mind, his body, his very being. It’s called the desire to act like a stumblebum Method goof. The symptoms, which are highly visible and dramatic, range from a propensity for bug-eyed staring to a tendency to swallow each line with a kind of renegade doofus mumble, in a way that leaves Hardy sounding like a cross between early Marlon Brando and late Adam Sandler.

Matt Patches, Polygon - No score

There are two movies inside Venom, and they spend 100 minutes battling over a theoretical franchise-starter’s soul. There’s a big, clunky comic-book movie, in which a reluctant hero embraces and wields newfound powers to save the world, and clutching that by-the-books blockbuster by the throat is a bloodthirsty, symbiote romp spearheaded by star Tom Hardy (The Dark Knight Rises), who sinks his teeth into the picture with tour-de-force comedic performance.

Peri Nemiroff, Collider - C

Venom almost gets away with its nonsensical plot in the end thanks to that Eddie and Venom bromance, but then you’re reminded of the major missed opportunity here – more than once, actually. Venom should have been a quality start to Sony’s own Marvel franchise. This, however, is a film that doesn’t earn it and the multiple reminders from the studio saying, “Hey, don’t forget we want to make more of these,” only makes it worse. Perhaps its box office will determine the future of this franchise, but from a quality perspective, Venom won’t give Sony a solid base to build on.



Based on several of the early reviews (some of which tend to fall in line with the early reactions that debuted shortly after the film's premiere), it seems that Sony's Venom is essentially two movies in one: the first, an intriguing comic book movie that fits the tone of modern comic book films, and the second, a nonsensical production that tends to skirt the edges of being a comedy. All in all, it looks like Venom is an incredibly fun movie that appears to falter the longer it goes on.


Ultimately, the movie's success will be decided by those who do and don't show up at the theater this weekend (and beyond) to see Sony's latest Marvel project. If it winds up flopping at the box office, then the studio's burgeoning shared universe may be dead on arrival, though that's not something that is being decided on at this moment. However, it seems like Venom will be good fun for many moviegoers - just not all of them.
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Unread 2018-10-03, 12:24 PM   #190
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VENOM SPOILERS: A Countdown Of All The Batshit Crazy Things That Happen In The Movie







Venom has not been well received by the majority of critics, but the movie still deserves some credit for really going for it at times... even if the risks it takes don't always pay off. Click on for more.




To say Venom is kind of all over the place is probably an understatement, but its unevenness and juggling (well, attempts to juggle) multiple different tones certainly makes for a unique viewing experience.

Add Tom Hardy at his unhinged best - or worst, depending on your perspective - and you have a comic book movie filled with memorably batshit moments - event if some of 'em will stick with you for the wrong reasons.

Below, we count down all of the craziest stuff in Venom. Beware of major SPOILERS.

To view the moments all at once, simply click on the VIEW LIST (ONE PAGE) button below!

 
<H2 style="FONT-SIZE: x-large; MARGIN: 0px 0px 10px">Tom Hardy's Performance
 




Yes, the star of the movie gets his very own spot on this list, and for very good reason.

Tom Hardy's performance as Eddie Brock/Venom has been lambasted and praised in equal measure, and when you see some of the choices he makes with this character you'll likely understand why.

With his accent veering constantly between standard American and that infamous New York/Boston mumble, the Academy Award-nominated actor tears through Venom like a wild-eyed force of nature, and is by far the most memorable part of the film... for better or worse!
A Nice Chicken Dinner



In easily the most gross-out moment of the movie, Eddie Brock is compelled by his ravenous new friend to eat a rotten chicken carcass out of the garbage.

Eddie starts off with a few frozen chicken nuggets before diving right into the trash and devouring the contents. He then rushes into the bathroom and vomits - quite graphically - into the toilet.

It's... not pleasant.
A Dip With The Lobsters



Once Eddie realizes that something is very wrong with him, he follows his ex Annie and her new boyfriend into a restaurant, which probably wasn't the best place to take a constantly hungry alien parasite.

Venom forces his host to try a few morsels from various plates before Brock dives into a lobster tank to cool down, biting into a live crustacean while he's at it.

Apparently, Hardy came up with the idea to leap into the tank, and fake lobsters needed to be flown in at the last minute to accommodate him.
Venom Likes Heads



Who doesn't, right?

Venom may have dispensed with that rumored R-rating, but that doesn't mean it skimps on the brutality.

There's no blood and it's never particularly graphic, but Venom does gleefully chow-down on quite a few heads in this movie, which is something we never expected to see in a PG-13 "superhero" flick.

F-Bomb



Just in case it wasn't already abundantly clear that Venom does not take place in the established Marvel Cinematic Universe, Eddie Brock drops an F-bomb towards the end of the movie.

Sure, The X-Men movies are also produced in associations with Marvel Studios and characters curse-up a storm in them, but with Sony now sharing a much closer connection to The MCU thanks to the Spider-Man deal, this is a little more surprising.

If that crossover ever does happen, Venom is gonna have to wash his mouth out with soap.
Venom Calls Eddie A Pussy



Similarly, it's hard to imagine any character associated with The MCU referring to someone else as a "pussy" (edit: Tony Stark does in Iron Man 3, which completely slipped my mind), but that's what happens in Venom.

To be fair, it's actually one of the funniest moments in the movie, as Venom urges Eddie to jump out of a window only to berate his lack of cojones when we then cut to him taking the elevator instead.
Venom Makes Out With Eddie (Kinda)



One of the early Twitter reactions got some attention when it revealed that Venom and Eddie make out in the movie, but when the scene is put into context that's not exactly what happens.

Yes, Eddie and Venom do kiss, but the symbiote is bonded to Annie at the time (we get a quick glimpse of She-Venom) which obviously doesn't paint quite the homoerotic picture many fans had in their minds after the initial Tweet.
Carnage



As rumored, Woody Harrelson does indeed show up in the mid-credits scene as Cletus Kasady in a faintly ridiculous red wig, and teases the "Carnage" to come.

It's a decent set-up for a sequel featuring the serial killing villain, but it has so little to do with the movie we just watched that it feels dropped in out of nowhere as a result.
"Meanwhile, In Another Universe"



Rather than tease a connection to the live-action MCU Spider-Man, the post-credits scene of Venom establishes a link to the animated universe of Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse.

We get a clip from that movie featuring Miles Morales chasing The Prowler before visiting the grave of Peter Parker, only to discover that the original Webhead is still alive in another dimension.

It's an impressive scene, but just another example of some of the bonkers choices the Venom movie makes.


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Unread 2018-10-03, 07:29 PM   #191
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How Much Did Venom Cost To Make?


Venom is being positioned as a key tentpole for Sony, but how much did the studio spend on it? Though Spider-Man is now part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe thanks to Sony's groundbreaking deal with Marvel, the former still maintains the film rights to some 900 characters from the comics, giving them plenty of material to mine through to create their own franchise. Sony is attempting to launch a universe populated by figures in Spider-Man's rogues' gallery, with plans for films about Morbius, Silver Sable & Black Cat, and others in place. As such, there's a lot riding on Venom, which needs to be successful in order to keep those dreams alive.

In terms of critical response, Venom is something of a mixed bag. Reviews indicate that it's a fun and entertaining time at the movies (largely due to the dynamic between Eddie Brock and Venom), though its execution comes across as somewhat dated when compared to other modern comic book movies. However, the real test for Venom will be its commercial performance. Estimates have it projected to break the all-time October opening weekend record, putting it in position to thrive.



Venom's production budget comes in at around $100 million, which is fairly modest when compared to similar titles. Ant-Man and the Wasp's price tag may have been as large as $195 million, while James Wan's upcoming Aquaman film reportedly has a budget of $160 million. Spider-Man: Homecoming (a joint venture between Sony and Marvel) cost $175 million to make.




With this information in mind, Venom needs to gross approximately $200 million worldwide in order to break even. Seeing that it's poised for a $175 million global debut, it should be able to easily pass that mark. Venom does not face much in the way of direct competition, with October seeing the long-awaited theatrical premieres of awards contenders like A Star is Born and First Man. Despite what Lady Gaga fans would have you believe, the target audience for Venom is quite different from this month's other releases, so the Marvel Comics adaptation is essentially going to run unopposed for the next few weeks. With the exception of The Predator in mid-September, there hasn't really been a major franchise release since Mission: Impossible - Fallout in July. General audiences are hungry for a genre picture.




Sony was wise to keep Venom costs down, as it was far from a guarantee it would be a box office hit. People were skeptical the character could work without Spider-Man, and some of the marketing materials didn't have the desired effect on viewers. Since the budget didn't spiral out of control, it puts Venom in a better position to turn a profit and secure the franchise's future. Hopefully for Sony, it all goes well and they can forge ahead with their slate.

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Unread 2018-10-03, 07:35 PM   #192
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Reid Scott Interview: Venom

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Reid Scott is best known for playing Deputy Director of Communications Dan Egan on HBO's comedy Veep. He also played Brendan "Brando" Dorff on TBS’s sitcom My Boys. Scott’s most recent role is Dr. Dan in the comic book movie Venom. Hitting theaters October 5, Venom is a combination action-film, comedy, and dark horror directed by Zombieland’s Ruben Fleischer.
Screen Rant: So, there was a lot of secrecy surrounding your character. Now that we can finally talk about it freely, talk to me about your character's relationship with Eddie Brock and Anne.
Reid Scott: So, my character, Dr. Dan, is in a nice cozy little love triangle with Michelle William’s character Anne and Eddie Brock played by Tom Hardy. But we wanted to do something a little different in this love triangle. I think we've all seen the classic love triangles where the old guy hates the new guy. The new guy feels threatened by the old guy and then you're just wondering how they're going to duke it out and fight over the girl who's going to throw her hands up and be frustrated by how meat-heady these two idiots are and stuff. So, we didn't want to do anything like that.
We had a lot of fun playing with that. And where we sort of landed is… [the director] Ruben Fleischer and I talked about the character in the early days of shooting. I was like, ‘What if he just loved Eddie? What if he just thought Eddie was just cool and almost couldn't help himself around Eddie a little bit? And that would, in its own way, it’s not a tactic, because I think it's very authentic on Dr. Dan's part. But that in and of itself would sort of put Eddie on the back foot. Like, ‘Who is this?’ Assuming they're going to square off and it just doesn't happen. And in fact, Dr. Dan actually has to help them out a little bit.
Screen Rant: So, I'm glad you said that. Mainly because I wanted to tell you I'm on team Dr. Dan.
Reid Scott: Thank you.
Screen Rant: I’m a Dr. Dan guy. Hashtag TeamDoctorDan. Here's the thing. I love this character. I really do because he's the nice guy that just wants to help, right?
Reid Scott: Yeah.
Screen Rant: It was a lot of fun. So, what drew you to the script? And was there an evolution of Dr. Dan that changed throughout the writing process at all? That you saw?
Reid Scott: Initially, what drew me to the script was I was a Venom fan from the time I was a kid. I grew up on comic books. I also love horror movies. That's my happy place. If I'm having a bad day, I don't go for the pint of ice cream. I go for dark, dark, sinister horror. So, I love that about Venom. I was also a big fan of Ruben Fleischer's from Zombieland. And I just, I love the way he uniquely blends the genres. So, I knew that's what he was going to go for with this. And what was the second part of your question?




Screen Rant: Well, look, we're going to move onto this question. Is Dr. Dan the real hero of this story?
Reid Scott: [CHUCKLES] I wouldn't go that far. He's a good guy. He's definitely a good guy. He's a confident dude. He's not threatened by anything. He's a surgeon. So, all surgeons are somewhere between confident and cocky. He's got the girl. So, I don't think he feels he's really in a match necessarily with Eddie. But, yeah, it's nice that there's a humanity that we tried to bring all the characters. And that's what sort of fun about Venom, is all the layers you get to peel away. What's going on in the psychodrama. So, to steer away from classic archetypes and to have someone like a little more human, was definitely fun, especially for a superhero movie.
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Screen Rant: Right. If we get a Venom 2, where would you like to see Dr. Dan go next? Because I would love to see him with the symbiote.
Reid Scott: [CHUCKLES] Just like hacking away patients. Giant blade hands. He would be a better doctor and he could reach inside and like fix somebody whatever they got there going on. And pull it back out. Yeah, that'd be cool.
Screen Rant: Yeah. Reid great performance, man. I'm a fan of Dr. Dan.
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Unread 2018-10-03, 07:37 PM   #193
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Jenny Slate Interview: Venom



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Jenny Slate is a comedian and actress seen in multiple television shows and heard in dozens of movies. She’s a former cast member on Saturday Night Live and played the infamous Mona Lisa Saperstein on Parks and Recreation. Slate has lent her voice to such animated movies as Zootopia, The Secret Life of Pets, and Despicable Me 3. She appears in all her live-action glory in the latest superhero movie Venom, which hits theaters October 5, 2018.
Screen Rant: Can you chat me up about your character's relationship with Eddie Brock.
Jenny Slate: Sure. I can chat you up on that. My character, Doris Skirth, doesn't really have a relationship with Eddie when she first meets him. She seeks him out because she knows that he is brave and willing to do things that maybe are not above board, but that will serve the community, that she feels that she is personally kind of failing. But I think that she is very intimidated by Eddie, but she knows that she has to be in touch with him.
Screen Rant: Interesting. Now you have a great comedic range. But this character seems very stoic. Can you talk to me about how different it was playing that kind of role?
Jenny Slate: Well, we all have sort of various aspects in our psyche. Which is actually a comment that's sort of appropriate for this film. But I'm really peppy. I started my career in comedy because that is what comes naturally to me. And also, when I'm nervous I tend to make jokes and I tend to try to make people smile to reassure myself that people are kind. But there's also a very still part of me and a serious part of me. And I've been acting for maybe six years, but before that, I always was a student in one way or another. Like there's an academic portion of my life as well. So, it didn't really feel like I was stepping very far out of what I know. Although I don't, you know, normally wear a lab coat. Or glasses. No, I don't have glasses. I got 20/20.


Screen Rant: You look great either way. Now the Internet can sometimes be a weird place. Were you surprised about how the topic of conversation was the word symbiote and symbiote?
Jenny Slate: I don't really do that. I don't go on the Internet and look up that stuff about myself. Just kind of the wild, wild, wild west out there.




Screen Rant: It is really the wild, wild west out there. Your character is a little bit conflicted, but she has her heart in the right place and does the right thing. What do you want people to take away from that?
Jenny Slate: I think that what I would like people to take away from my character's actions is that standing up for what you believe in does often come at a great cost. But it's really important to access a world where we can all feel safe. Even if you have to like kick down those walls and not make it to the other side.
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Screen Rant: What part of the script or the movie really hooked you and got you on board?
Jenny Slate: Well, the first scene I read was the scene between Dora and Eddie, in the mini mart. And I just was, I've never played a character like this before. And it's also so one on one, you know? It's like, ‘Wow, if I get this part, I'm truly going to be in a scene with Tom Hardy.’ Like great, yeah.
Screen Rant: Speaking of which, because you have great comedic timing and Tom is known for being intense and a really focused actor. What did you guys learn from each other?
Jenny Slate: I think Tom has a lot of comedy in him though. He's really funny and he's very energetic. And I think we both really care about our performances. So, it was easy to be there for that. Just being like, we both care. And Riz [Ahmed] is the same way. I didn't get to work with Michelle [Williams]. I wish I had.
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Unread 2018-10-04, 09:54 AM   #194
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The experience of watching Venom is similar to the failed experimentation on human test subjects depicted in the new film’s long slog of a first hour. In the same way that those humans’ bodies so roundly reject the introduction of a gooey alien life form, Venom represents a battle between two opposing forces. There is the deliberately goofy and genuinely weird lead performance from Tom Hardy, and then there is the antiquated and lazy film surrounding Hardy. As much as he fights to be the dominant one, his performance is essentially rejected by Venom, in favor of storytelling choices that felt dated 15 years ago.
Hardy plays Eddie Brock, a San Francisco-based journalist with his own TV show that strives to be Vice-like in its supposedly ruthless investigative reporting. Eddie soon runs afoul of world-renowned scientist and inventor Carlton Drake (Riz Ahmed); they clash during an interview that goes so badly for Eddie that he’s fired from his job and his fiancee Annie (Michelle Williams) promptly leaves him after she’s canned from her job. Eddie’s further exploration into what mysterious discoveries were made by Drake on a recent manned mission into space leads the intrepid reporter to eventually have some black alien goo known as a symbiote fuse into his body, turning him into the monstrous Venom.
The comic-book-averse will remember (or maybe you’d rather forget) that Venom appeared in Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man 3 back in 2007. There, Eddie Brock was played by Topher Grace as a warped and more cynical take on Peter Parker. Here, Eddie is portrayed as good-hearted, if something of a shifty oddball. Even before Eddie is partially taken over by Venom, Hardy makes him basically into a weirdo. When Eddie is first informed by one of Drake’s employees (a woefully underused Jenny Slate) that they’re harboring aliens, he immediately mimics E.T. as if it’s the most natural thing in the world. Once Venom shows up – and boy, does it take way too long for the title character to show up – Hardy is even goofier. Brock doesn’t exactly have a lot of qualms about Venom leading him around San Francisco, beating up bad guys, and also eating bad guys’ heads. Because why not.
Tom Hardy is a lot of fun to watch here, partly because almost nothing else in this film is fun to watch. Though the ensemble around Hardy is mostly quite talented, they all appear to be acting in a different, much more boring superhero film. Watching Ahmed try and fail to breathe life into the character of Carlton Drake, who seems to be heavily inspired by a certain billionaire who recently got into trouble with the SEC, is especially vexing. No matter how many monologues Ahmed has about the fragility of the human body and the awe-inspiring power of alien symbiotes, it’s hard not to shake the sense that everything in Venom except Hardy was ported in from clunky early-2000s-era superhero films like Daredevil or Catwoman. So much of this film feels like it was cynically designed by a committee of executives who don’t understand why people like superhero movies; they just know people will pay to see them.
It does not help matters that Venom relies on a lot of CGI effects that are real, real rough to watch, both literally and figuratively. In a climactic battle, two alien symbiotes with human hosts go head-to-head in a nighttime battle; one specific shot with both symbiotes in focus feels like it’s meant to be the money shot, and maybe would be if the various CG elements were discernible or comprehensible. And an earlier car chase, right as Eddie is fully turning into Venom, is equally incoherent to watch. Director Ruben Fleischer, who made his name with the fluid and entertaining Zombielandnearly a decade ago, is unable to make heads or tails of the action set pieces here. Granted, there’s a lot more talking than action in Venom, but this car chase goes on for a while, as if it was meant to be what everyone would talk about on the way home, instead of something to forget.
Venom could have been worse, which is perhaps the worst kind of compu-sult. But it’s still true. The ads for this film pronounce that “the world has enough superheroes,” which is also true. The movie itself can’t quite position Venom as a true antihero; when your lead character says, “Let’s save the planet” in the third act, they’re acting pretty damn heroic. The problem with Venom is simple: only one person involved in this thing seems to understand what the movie shouldbe. Tom Hardy and his squirrelly American accent are oddly delightful to watch here; it’s a sensation that’s amplified by every scene not featuring Hardy, precisely because of how leaden the rest of the film is.
/Film Rating: 4 out of 10
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Unread 2018-10-04, 12:10 PM   #195
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Venom Director Had No Contact With Kevin Feige About MCU Connections



Venom director Ruben Fleischer reveals he had no contact with Marvel or Kevin Feige at any point during production. Ever since Sony announced plans for a solo Venom movie, there’s been confusion over how closely the project would be linked with the Marvel Cinematic Universe – if at all. Producer Amy Pascal claimed the movie took place in the same world as the MCU, but it was later clarified there were no real story ties to it. There were also rumors Spider-Man star Tom Holland would cameo as Peter Parker to set up a future crossover.

Fans who eagerly awaited Venom were also recently let down when it was confirmed the movie would be PG-13 instead of R. Cast and crew interviews about the project seemed to indicate it would a mature, gory affair, but the team behind the movie have backtracked on that in recent weeks, insisting it was always intended to be PG-13. Reports suggest this move is also intended to bring the movie in line with the MCU, and encourage future crossovers between Venom and other characters in the MCU.

If Sony is hoping for Venom to mix it up with other characters, it might be expected they’ve at least had some conversations with Marvel about it. This doesn’t appear to be the case, with Venom director Ruben Fleischer revealing in an interview with Metro that he had no contact with Kevin Feige or Marvel at any stage, stating plainly 'No. Not in any way.' The director admits the production was completely separate from Marvel, but there’s still a chance for future collaboration:

"I hope that at some point they will be able to crossover. But for us the entire process was self-contained."


While early word of mouth on Venom isn’t great, the movie is still tracking to do big numbers, so at the very least a Venom sequel is likely. Maybe the performance of the movie will encourage Marvel to bring the character over into one of their projects, but for the time being, Sony appears content to build their own universe of Spider-Man villains. Next up with be the Jared Leto vehicle Morbius, which will be directed by Life's Daniel Espinosa.

Venom star Tom Hardy recently spoke about how he’d like a future Venom movie to go R-rated. Hardy feels the character can be made suitable for both teenage and mature audiences, and that he’d also like to see the character mixing it with The Avengers and other MCU staples.
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Unread 2018-10-05, 12:25 PM   #196
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‘Venom’: Everything You Need to Know About the Marvel Antihero



From alien costume to movie star — your quick primer on the latest Marvel character to get his own solo feature





Venom, getting a little long in the tooth in the Tom Hardy movie 'Venom.'

Sony Pictures

Ah yes, a superhero story you can sink your teeth into. When Venom claws its way into theaters this weekend, it’ll mark the biggest moment yet for one of the most infamous villains that Marvel’s Spider-Man has ever faced. Tom Hardy is Eddie Brock, a down-on-his-luck journalist who fuses with a symbiotic alien entity to become the long-tongued, sharp-toothed, shape-shifting title character. Directed by Zombieland‘s Ruben Fleischer, the movie is set outside the Marvel Cinematic Universe of which Spidey himself is now a part, giving the character a chance to slobber and shine as an ultraviolent vigilante on his own.






But long before he became the star of a blockbuster movie (his second after Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man 3), Venom began as an afterthought — a living breathing backstory for Peter Parker’s badass black costume. How did he go from these humble beginnings to holding down a franchise-approved solo film? (Albeit one that, shall we say, isn’t getting the most favorable reviews.) Wrap your tendrils around our guide to the character for the answers.

Before he was a character, Venom was a costume.

Imagine if the Joker started out as a clown outfit that Batman wore for circus-themed missions … and you’ll have some idea of just how odd the path that this character took to antihero superstardom really was.
Back in 1982, comics reader Randy Schueller submitted an idea to Marvel for a storyline in which Spider-Man acquired a black costume (with a red spider logo, rather than the familiar white one) made of “unstable molecules,” i.e. the Marvel Universe material from which the Fantastic Four’s Reed Richards made his team’s uniforms. More than mere fabric, this outfit would be able to adjust to Peter Parker’s needs, as well as enhance his powers. Controversial Marvel editor-in-chief Jim Shooter bought the idea from Schueller for a cool $220.
It took a couple of years for the new white-on-black look to make its first chronological appearance in the pages of the company-wide crossover “event comic” Secret Wars #8, courtesy of a design by artist Mike Zeck and a script by Shooter that saw the Webslinger acquire the costume on an alien planet.
Though the issue came out in December 1984, the costume had popped up several months earlier — first as a sketch in March’s comic-length newsletter Marvel Age #12, then in a Spidey story set after the events of Secret Wars in May’s Amazing Spider-Man #252, plotted by Roger Stern, written by Tom DeFalco, and illustrated by Ron Frenz.






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… And also an alien parasite.
During their Amazing Spider-Man run, DeFalco and Frenz fleshed out the origin of the liquid-like black outfit, which would respond to Peter Parker’s thoughts; it would even hijack him in his sleep for late-night crimefighting binges. Sure, it looks badass, but it’s not merely a futuristic crimefighting costume or the self-repairing clothes writer/artist John Byrne had devised for the martial-arts hero Iron Fist (an influence on Stern’s concept for the costume). It’s a sentient, symbiotic alien entity, one which bonds to a human host and bestows them with incredible powers while still maintaining a mind of its own.



That “mind of its own” thing is the rub. Though he digs the power-up, Parker quickly learns that this “Symbiote” wants to bond to his body permanently. By exploiting the alien’s vulnerability to fire and sonic energy — and with a little help from the Fantastic Four — Spider-Man separates himself from the costume, which slithers off to find another host to inhabit.

Eddie Brock, the host with the most.
The entity that became known as Venom would go on to link itself to many Marvel characters, including Peter’s childhood bully Flash Thompson and the villain Mac “The Scorpion” Gargan in the main Marvel Universe and a T. Rex (!) in the post-apocalyptic Wolverine tale Old Man Logan.

But its most famous host is Eddie Brock, a journalist who blames Spider-Man for his failed career. His intense hatred of the Wall-Crawler, coupled with the symbiote’s intimate knowledge of Spidey’s secret identity and immunity to his danger-detecting “spider-sense,” made their combination — referred to collectively as Venom — one of the superhero’s most dangerous enemies.
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In the Extreme 1990s, Venom was an antihero for the times.

The Brock/symbiote Venom debuted in Amazing Spider-Man‘s 300th issue in May 1988, written by David Michelinie and illustrated by a young superstar-in-the-making named Todd McFarlane.

In some ways, the bad guy is a supervillain cut from the old-school cloth: an evil mirror image of the hero he fights, like Superman and Bizarro, or the Flash and, er, the Reverse Flash. But future Spawncreator McFarlane’s wild style and penchant for horror-tinged aesthetics got punched up even further by his successor on the series, Erik Larsen, who emphasized those sharp teeth and that slobbering tongue, making him a very modern man-monster. With a ndesign that emphasized shape-shifting and sheer brute force, Venom was Spider-Man by way of Giger, Carpenter and Cronenberg.







But after Spider-Man rescued Brock’s estranged ex-wife, Venom realized the man he thought responsible for all their collective woes was actually a pretty alright guy, and something changed. Beginning with the 1993 miniseries Venom: Lethal Protector, launched by Michelinie and legendary Spider-Man artist Mark Bagley, the character repented of his villainous ways — though not his penchant for biting people’s heads off. So he became a vigilante.

Sharing both his murderous methods and his black-and-white look with another of the era’s most popular characters, the Punisher, Venom’s antihero incarnation sustained several solo series. He even teamed up with his one-time nemesis to take on one of several of the even more deranged symbiotes that the original Venom entity had spawned — a blood-red monstrosity that bonded with a serial killer called Cletus Kasaday and called itself Carnage. (Keep your eyes peeled, moviegoers.)

And yes, he made Tobey Maguire do an evil dance routine.

Remember Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man films? From the 2018 vantage point it’s easy to forget, since the Marvel Cinematic Universe and the Christopher Nolan Dark Knight Trilogy took pop-culture by storm while the Spider-Man franchise has been rebooted not once but twice. Still, the director’s first two outings were considered the highwater mark of the superhero genre.

Until Spider-Man 3 came along, that is. Marking Venom’s cinematic debut, the movie has a bad rap for being overstuffed and tonally inconsistent, which it deserves. Yes, the version of the character created when the symbiote bonds with Topher Grace’s Eddie Brock is pretty lackluster. But while it’s still attached to Tobey Maguire’s Parker, it turns him into a swaggering parody of emo coolness, which Raimi conveys with what can only be described as an evil dance routine.

Regardless, the movie stopped the Sony-owned Spidey series in its tracks. The Amazing Spider-Manreboot that followed in 2012 also ran out of juice after only two outings, but not before the Venom symbiote popped up in a brief cameo in the second installment. Plans for a solo outing set in that franchise went nowhere.

The Tom Hardy experiment.

After Sony inked their deal with Marvel to incorporate Spider-Man into the Marvel Cinematic Universe proper, they maintained the rights to handle related characters more or less on their own. Whatever else it might be, Venom is a test case for this parallel universe. The casting of Tom Hardy, an actor whose turn as Bane in Nolan’s The Dark Knight Rises is either the best or worst thing about that whole series depending on whom you ask, indicates that the studio is willing to take some risks, while the edgy adolescent violence and humor align the project more with Deadpool and DC’s Suicide Squad than the squeaky-clean MCU.
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Unread 2018-10-05, 01:06 PM   #197
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Venom Director & Producer Praise Tom Hardy's Performance





Venom stars Tom Hardy as Eddie Brock, an investigative journalist who merges with an alien symbiote to become the titular anti-hero. The movie is directed by Zombieland’s Ruben Fleischer and is a combination action-film, comedy, and dark horror. Venom also stars Michelle Williams, Riz Ahmed, Jenny Slate, and Reid Scott and is now in theaters.
Avi Arad has been the CEO of Toy Biz, the chief creative officer of Marvel Entertainment, and the founder of Marvel Studios. Matt Tolmach managed both Spider-Man franchises before Marvel Studios’ involvement in 2015. Along with Spider-Man Homecoming’s Amy Pascal, they are producing Sony’s latest comic book movie.


Both Arad and Tolmach were delighted when Tom Hardy took on the role of Eddie Brock. Arad said, “He chose us.” Tolmach expanded on that, saying, “He did choose us. But you know this. Venom is such a beloved, sacred character. You got to do right by that character, because you’ve got to do right by people’s expectations. It’s a character that demands integrity, it’s a super intense character, it’s a complicated layered character. Who pulls that off?"

Continued Arad:

“And the only person that can pull that off is somebody who brings that level of integrity. Right away, when we were making this movie, you’d say to someone, ‘Hey, what are you working on?’ And you say, ‘I’m making a Venom movie with Tom Hardy.’ And their like, ‘No way. Wow, that’s awesome.’ Because you look at his career--. You take it seriously."

Tolmach continued, “You look at the movies he’s made. He takes massive risks, he is so complicated and brilliant and nuanced and original. It always feels… it always has integrity. So, lining up an actor who brings that, and also is just a bad ass, I mean you just stand next to him. He’s a real bad ass, so is Eddie Brock, so is Venom. So, things just lined up.”



Director Ruben Fleischer also had nothing but praise for the actor. Tom Hardy plays both Eddie Brock and the voice of the alien symbiote Venom. “And so, for Tom especially, the duality was a theme that he was really excited to play,” said Fleischer.



He continued:

“And the way he did it was incredible to watch. He would wear an earwig and he would basically pre-record all of Venom’s lines. And so, he’d be in the middle of a scene, talking to Michelle [Williams] or by himself, the sound guys would just trigger Venom’s voice. So, he’d have something to react to and then he’d talk to it and then they’d play Venom’s line back.
“So, he really was hearing voice in his head the whole time, which is why I think the performance feels so real and so natural. When he’s walking on the street, when he first hears Venom and he’s like, ‘Who said that, who said that?!’ He’s literally hearing the voice in his head. So, he has something to react to. Which I think makes it so realistic, his performance.”

Talking more on the character of Eddie Brock, Arad said, “The point of it is, that Eddie is looking for attention. Eddie wants to do good things, but because of his life, shortcuts are okay and then they’re not okay. And the only one who is going to call him a loser is the symbiote. Right? But then he’s got to come clean and say, ‘I’m a loser too.’ So, okay. People are going to understand this and see it’s like a classic buddy movie. Two guys who become one. That’s awesome!”
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Unread 2018-10-05, 02:39 PM   #198
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Venom Uses An Important Spider-Man Character You Might Have Missed

This story gets into spoilers for Venom, so stop reading now if you haven't yet seen the film!

Even casual fans know that Venom supposedly takes place in a universe that also includes Spider-Man. So while the web-slinger doesn't show face in Ruben Fleischer's origin movie for Venom, rabid Spidey fans will still hear a number of references to characters that we recognize from the comics, and from this world. One of them shows up very early in the movie, as astronaut John Jameson is name-dropped and shown (before he's quickly dispersed). Still, hearing the name "Jameson" in a Venom movie raises all sorts of possibilities, so when CinemaBlend got the opportunity to speak with co-producers Avi Arad and Matt Tolmach about the man's inclusion -- and if it means J. Jonah Jameson is also part of this world -- Arad teased:

In the comic... it was John Jameson who made [J. Jonah] Jameson believe that Spider-Man had killed his son. That's kind of how the whole Jameson mystique started, and then Venom [came along]. But the idea was that something happens in the show, and he gets involved. ... It's a great Easter Egg. Because the fans will know exactly why we call [that astronaut] John.

Avi Arad is right, in that J. Jonah Jameson always believed that his astronaut son was the type of hero that people should be worshipping, and he never understood why people rooted for Spider-Man, instead. Yes, in the comics, John was a successful astronaut, but his trips to space actually brought back rubies that turned John Jameson into the Man-Wolf in the pages of the Marvel comics.

Like most of what we see in Venom, it appears that John's legacy is going to be ret-conned and repurposed, and Avi Arad's answer to us actually hints at the direction that they could be going in this Spider-Man-free spider-verse. In the opening sequence, John loses his life after being a temporary host to the symbiote. What if, in Venom 2, they introduce J. Jonah Jameson, and he blames Venom for the death of his hero son? And instead of having a vendetta against Spider-Man, this new J. Jonah hates Eddie Brock's antihero, blaming him for his crushing loss?

It would be a different way to reintroduce J. Jonah, who was such an integral part of the Sam Raimi movies, but hasn't been seen in a Spider-Man movie yet. Could J. Jonah make a triumphant return... in the Venom franchise? Time will tell, but Venom certainly moved us closer to that by using John. And where there's John, his loudmouth father and usually close behind.
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Unread 2018-10-05, 09:35 PM   #199
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Venom Symbiotes Explained: Powers, Home Planet & Names


Warning: SPOILERS ahead for Venom

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Venom (re)introduces viewers to a powerful alien race of so-called "symbiotes." These strange creatures bond with other living beings, drawing sustenance from them and even taking control of them. They're one of the creepiest, most sinister ideas in the Spider-Man franchise - one that really isn't traditionally associated with sci-fi body horror.

Director Ruben Fleischer is a comic book fan, and he grew up loving the Venom books. As a result, he's taken a remarkably comic-book-accurate approach when it comes to adapting the slithering symbiotes for the big screen. Venom is filled with concepts and ideas lifted straight from the comics, including when it comes to establishing the nature and actions of the symbiotes themselves.



Here, we'll take a brief look at everything you need to know about the symbiotes of Venom. What are the symbiotes, where do they come from, what are they capable of, and just why are they here?

The Origin of the Symbiotes in Venom

The symbiotes originated from the planet Klyntar (confirmed as canon to the film by an official tie-in comic), and they evolved to exist in a symbiotic relationship with other life-forms. In truth, however much the Klyntars may dislike admitting it, they tread a fine line between between symbiotes and parasites; as we see in Venom, the bodies of most hosts are unable to sustain the symbiotes for long, and the experience of carrying a symbiote can be fatal to the host as their organs fail under the strain. True symbiosis appears to only be possible if the host ingests enough sustenance to keep their body running during the first few hours after they bond with the symbiote. The symbiotes drive the host to crave two types of food; live meat (such as a lobster, or a thug's head), or raw meat (such as gone-off chicken).


In Venom, the symbiotes detected plentiful life on Earth and launched their version of an exploratory vessel to get them here. That's the "comet" discovered by the Life Foundation, and it's home to millions of symbiotes - essentially an invasion force. It's reasonable to assume that the symbiotes have consumed all life on their homeworld, and are now branching out; the creatures can clearly exist in stasis when not in an oxygenated environment, so it's unclear how long they've been traveling. If the comet showed no signs of being artificial, then it could well have been traveling between the stars on kinetic force alone - possibly even for billions of years.

Introducing the Symbiotes of Venom

According to Venom, the four symbiotes picked up by the Life Foundation are essentially a team, with different ranks and different capabilities. Two of the symbiotes die during the Life Foundation's experiments, and although they aren't named in the film itself, their distinctive colorschemes will be recognizable to anyone who's read the comics. The blue one is Toxin, and the yellow one is either Phage or Scream. These are tremendously powerful beings in their own rights back in the comics, so it's something of a shame we never see what they're capable of.


Only two symbiotes play a major part in Venom: Riot and Venom himslf. The former is apparently the team leader, and he possesses powers that far outstrip Venom's. Riot's will appears to be stronger, and so he takes full control of the host as soon as he establishes contact - something that's chillingly visible in the way he jumps from host to host. When Riot transforms into his full symbiote form, he can manipulate it in any way he chooses, forming a variety of devastating weapons. Incredibly, he's even able to sacrifice a part of his own being by forming projectile spikes, or blades that he leaves embedded within his victims. Presumably this means that he draws upon the host body's life force in order to regenerate his own symbiote.


Judged against Riot, Venom is far more prosaic. He doesn't appear to have the will to overthrow his host's mind, instead sharing it and attempting to relate to the host. He's strong, fast, and agile - but nowhere near Riot's level. While he can project symbiotic tendrils that are tremendously powerful (they can rip doors off cars with ease) he seems unable to morph into the variety of forms we see Riot take on. Where Riot is a team leader, Venom is a basic "grunt," nothing special among his own people. That's why he's willing to give humanity a chance; he sees an opportunity to be something greater.
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Unread 2018-10-08, 03:48 PM   #200
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VENOM Almost Had A Much Different (And Much Cooler) Opening Sequence - SPOILERS

Venom director Ruben Fleischer has revealed that there was originally a much different opening for the movie planned and it sounds infinitely cooler than what ended up on screen. Read on for details...




Venom opens with a pretty standard shot of a spaceship crashing to Earth but director Ruben Fleischer has now revealed that things could have taken a much more exciting turn with a visit to the planet Venom originally called home. "The beginning of the movie was a hard one," the filmmaker explained during a recent interview to promote the movie. "Like, how much do we want to tell the backstory?"

"There was a version [of the opening] where there was a planet crawling with tons of symbiotes that were collected and taken back to Earth by the Life Foundation. They had encountered them. But it kind of felt like, my instinct was it would be better to keep it more mysterious and just know that they've retrieved something from space. We don't know exactly by what means or how."

The planet of the symbiotes is called Klyntar and it was created to imprison their leader, Knull. While it would have been a tad complicated to delve into that, it does seem a shame to leave it off the table and Venom producer Matt Tolmach added that there was even concept art created for the planet.

"We toyed with some art work that we loved. We toyed with it," he said. "But we wanted the movie – it's out there. It's part of our mythology. It's part of our backstory, Klyntar and where this all came from and who knows what's next. But, it made sense to, in this movie, to let the origin of those things kind of unravel in the storytelling as opposed to going [to that planet]." What do you think?
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