There were rumblings of a Venom movie before the MCU even existed. The iconic evolution of the black and white Spider-suit has been a fan favorite along with the man who first held the Venom mantle, Eddie Brock. So no one was wholly surprised when Sony announced they were making a Venom standalone film. However, what’s slightly confusing is that the movie won’t include Spidey himself, making the latest news on the film very intriguing. During Sao Paulo’s Comic Con Experience 2017, Director Ruben Fleischer appeared via satellite to tease the Spidey spin-off. What he revealed confirms a popular fan theory and opens up a whole world of new ones!
Via Collider, the Zombieland director shared that the Sony film would pull from two story arcs, both classic Venom stories from the wild world of ’90s Marvel. The first is Venom: Lethal Protector, a six issue miniseries from 1993 which sees Venom make a pact with Peter Parker to stop being bad. Eddie movies to San Francisco, becoming a vigilante himself until a bunch of little symbiotes start causing chaos, leading to an unholy alliance between Peter and Eddie. The second is Planet of the Symbiotes, a five issue event from 1995 wherein Eddie questions his role as Venom, looking at who really holds the power when he wears the symbiote suit. It also sees Brock team up with Ben Riley’s much maligned Scarlet Spider.
What does this tell us about the new movie? Well, it scraps the popular idea that the film would lean into the Agent Venom or Venom: Space Knight stories. Those tales featured an adult Flash Thompson as he merged with the symbiote following a stint in the Iraq War. It also looks like Riz Ahmed will probably play serial killer Cletus Kasady, Brock’s ex-cellmate who takes on a symbiote offspring and becomes the evil Carnage. Many fans guessed that would be his role after his Emmy-winning turn in HBO’s prison drama, The Night Of. Carnage is the inspiration for the evil organization that creates five new symbiotes in Lethal Protector, a threat that inspires the odd couple of Spidey and Venom. These villainous symbiotes–Agony, Lasher, Phage, Riot, and Scream–also become the antagonists in Planet of the Symbiotes, even teaming up with Carnage at the end.
Both of these arcs are steeped in two main things: violence and alien monsters. So it’s likely that the new film will lean into an R rating as it focuses on the seedy side of the Spider-world with a sci-fi flare. Sony is clearly dedicated to establishing the idea of multiple Spider-folk with the title of the recently teased animated Miles Morales movie, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse. The inclusion of Planet of the Symbiotes as source material for the Venom movie may have more to do with the characters it includes than the storyline itself.
During the now infamous Clone Wars Saga, Marvel attempted to introduce a wholly new Spider-Man named Ben Reilly, who was later known as the Scarlet Spider. During the culmination of Planet of the Symbiotes, Spider-Man, Venom, and Scarlet Spider team up to save the day. Sony may be looking at a modified version of that team-up as a way to manage without Peter Parker. Or maybe this new film will stick strictly to the symbiotes, possibly pairing up Carnage and Venom to save New York instead. It would be unconventional but an interesting choice for Sony to make.
What do you think of these choices? Excited to see a violent Venom movie? Stoked to see Carnage on the big screen? Let us know below!
Images: Fox, HBO, Marvel, Warner Bros.