Hollywood played a rousing game of release date reshuffle recently, with several major 2018 blockbusters jockeying for position. James Cameron made it known that Avatar 2 would not be ready for its December 2018 date, which might have prompted Warner Bros. to shift its Aquaman back from October to that time frame. With October open, Sony stepped up and slotted a live-action Venom project that has been on the studio's radar for several years... only, that announcement brought with it a handful of interesting questions.

You can't really have a Venom story without a Spider-Man. So why don't we start there as we try to figure out what this movie will be all about, and how it might factor in to the studio's larger plans.

Tom Holland is Spider-Man

Does This Connect To Tom Holland's Spider-Man?

When Sony allowed Marvel Studios to use Spider-Man in its Captain America: Civil War, it was both a reset for the classic on-screen character, and a nail in the coffin for Sony's plans for a shared Spidey universe. At the time, back when Andrew Garfield wore the familiar red-and-blue Spidey tights, Sony had plans (in addition to Amazing Spider-Man sequels) for Sinister Six and Venom spinoff films. Those plans appeared to die when Spidey was recast and shared with Marvel.

So, what is this Venom movie? If you read the comics, you know that Venom was created when an alien symbiote detached from Peter Parker and merged with the angry and jealous personality of one Eddie Brock, Peter's rival at the Daily Bugle. The origin of Venom and the symbiote have changed over the years in the books, but the design -- basically a sleek, black and savage spin on Spider-Man's look -- has remained consistent. Venom appeared in Sam Raimi's Spider-Man 3, and should be an integral villain for the Spider-Man being set up in the MCU. But seeing as how this Venom news only came from Sony, and not from Marvel, we have to assume that this will have nothing to do with Tom Holland's version of the web-slinger... which is odd.

Venom can be his own character, standing apart from a Spider-Man narrative... but why would you do that? Maybe this is part of the evolving agreement between Sony and Marvel? Maybe Tom Holland will appear in this Venom movie? It's the biggest question we want answered about this movie, but far from the only question.

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