To say this is shocking would be an understatement. Sony announced today via Twitter that its standalone Venom film has finally found its lead star, as well as its director.
It seems that, after being courted for multiple superhero roles in the past few years, Tom Hardy has finally found one he’s willing to join, as he’s set to star as Eddie Brock, aka Venom, in next year’s adaptation of the character. Brock/Venom first appeared in Sam Raimi‘s Spider-Man 3 and, ironically, was one of the reasons the film felt bloated and didn’t work in the end. But with someone like Hardy headlining the would-tentpole (which is apparently separate from Sony/Marvel’s new Spider-Man series), it’ll certainly pique audiences’ interest.
My thoughts on all this? Hardy is a *great* actor, but casting him for Venom feels uninspired. Maybe I just wanted to see him play Wolverine down the road, but something about this feels…off. It’s not disappointing like Josh Brolin‘s casting as Cable, but it feels like a very safe (if smart) choice for Sony to get asses in seats because, let’s be real here, everyone loves Tom Hardy.
Here’s the picture of Hardy that came with the announcement.
Along with news of Hardy leading the film, Sony has hired Ruben Fleischer (Zombieland, Gangster Squad) to helm the film. Fleischer has also been in contention for other superhero films, including Ant-Man and Suicide Squad 2, but he seems like a good fit here, especially if Sony is still down for an R-rated film like they’ve been saying recently.
Filming starts sometime in the fall, as Venom opens October 5th, 2018.