Sony Pictures announces the casting of Tom Hardy as Venom with Reuben Fleischer directing.
Everything’s been pretty quiet since Venom got a release date. Oh yeah, I almost forgot. There was also that interesting rumor pointing to Split being a secret origin story for the character. But, alas, it was just that … a rumor, albeit a fun one, but a rumor nonetheless.
Today, though, we get our first substantial chunk of news from the highly anticipated film. Via The Hollywood Reporter, we have news that actor Tom Hardy has been cast in the role of Eddie Brock / Venom and Reuben Fleischer is in final negotiations to direct.
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Hardy, who’s accustomed to playing edgy, tough-guy roles, will fit in perfectly as the villainous symbiote. He’s also pretty familiar with the comic book genre—as he’s played the very memorable Bane in Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight Rises (2012). Topher Grace previously played Eddie Brock / Venom in the Sam Raimi / Tobey Maguire-era Spider-Man 3. Like most of things in that film, Grace’s villain was much maligned by fans due to the downplaying of Venom’s true power and potential.
Director Reuben Fleischer came to prominence with the 2009 horror-comedy Zombieland which starred Woody Harrelson, Jesse Eisenberg, Emma Stone, and Abigail Breslin. He later followed that up with another dark comedy—2011’s 30 Minutes or Less which also starred Jesse Eisenberg in the lead role. His later films included Two Night Stand (2014) and Unicorn Store (2017).
Venom is part of Sony Pictures’ initiative to reboot aspects of the Spider-Man franchise after Marvel Studios stepped in to help them. The inclusion of the web-head in 2016’s Captain America: Civil War—which officially made Spider-Man part of the MCU—was extremely well-received. And we’ll be seeing Peter Parker (played by Tom Holland) in this summer’s Spider-Man: Homecoming. However, Venom will not be a part of the MCU and will be set in its own universe. So it’ll be interesting to see how Venom will fare without his most famous enemy.
Venom will have an R-rating. Dante Harper was originally hired to write a first draft script, and Scott Rosenberg and Jeff Pinker were later brought in to pen a second draft. Avi Arad, Scott Rosenberg, and Amy Pascal will serve as producers.