As reported by Forbes, Sony is once again teasing the idea that a Venom movie might turn out to be an entirely standalone film – or one in which the character will appear in a series of films – that is entirely unrelated to the new Tom Holland Spider-Man film produced jointly by Marvel and Sony. How well this would actually work out is an open question, since it’s difficult to imagine the character of Venom appearing in a movie without also having Spider-Man pop up.
Venom in the Comics
In the comic books, the character of Venom was initially entirely a villain and one of Spider-Man’s principal adversaries. Over time, Venom was incorporated into the comic book storylines of other Marvel superheroes. Ultimately, he became a kind of antihero and even joined the Guardians of the Galaxy team for a while.
Sony has announced a Venom movie on October 5, 2018, it's released after Infinity War, could it be linked to the MCU? pic.twitter.com/1UfwW6ZIbr— Marvel Newz (@MarvelNewz) March 17, 2017
Venom himself – or itself, depending on how you look at it – is essentially a symbiotic/parasitic being that joins with a host individual – usually this host is evil or insane. It produces a virtually indestructible super suit around that individual that, not coincidentally, resembles the design of the suit worn by Spider-Man. One of the reasons for this is that Spider-Man was one of the first individuals on Earth infected by the Venom parasite, turning him evil for a period of time in the comics.
Venom Movie and Television Appearances
In Sam Raimi’s 2007’s Spider-Man 3, the character of Venom initially took over Peter Parker, as played by Toby Maguire, but after ultimately being rejected by him, it took over Eddie Brock instead. Whether it was because of a poor portrayal of Venom itself in the film, or because the movie was overstuffed with super villains, this film was largely considered a failure by critics and fans alike.
Certainly, the CGI at the time wasn’t really up to the job of creating the appearance of the Venom symbiote as it enveloped someone and took them over. The effects available today could probably produce something much more convincing.
Not long afterward, Sony decided to reboot its Spider-Man universe with a new actor Andrew Garfield and a new set of directors. While Venom wasn’t introduced in the two rather disappointing films that followed, Sony at the time was considering creating an expanded universe of villain-based films, with Venom becoming a member of a Sinister Six team movie.
With the failure of their last Spider-Man film, Sony again decided it was time to reboot this universe, and this time it turned to Marvel for help. This year, the highly anticipated new Sony/Marvel Spiderman: Homecoming will be coming out during the summer blockbuster season. The fate of the Sony Spider-Man universe hangs in the balance.
One of the advantages that Sony is enjoying with its new Spider-Man universe is that it has merged with Marvel Studios’ own remarkable and highly successful comic book universe. Now, Captain America, Thor or anyone else can appear in a Sony Spider-Man film, which will likely greatly increase the box office numbers.
In fact, the trailers for the new Spider-Man film already show Howard Stark’s Iron Man flying around New York with Peter Parker.
But the peculiar idea that Sony still seems to have of keeping Venom in a separate universe from Spider-Man would seem to toss out all the advantages they gain from working with Marvel Studios on such projects. Even worse, moviegoers are likely to be highly confused by the idea that somehow Venom and Spider-Man can never interact. So it’s questionable whether Sony will ultimately decide they want their Venom movie to really be in an entirely separate universe from Spider-Man.
[Featured Image by Sony]