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Venom

The release-date shuffle continues for the major blockbusters that aimed for 2020 weekends. Andy Serkis has been hard at work to the follow up to Ruben Fleischer’s Venom. We know that filming has been underway, but post-production likely has been on pause. This has led to a new release date for the sequel… as well as an official title.

The Hollywood Reporter notes that Venom 2 will now open on June 25, 2021. In addition to that, the sequel also has a title. Venom: Let There Be Carnage.

The date shift makes sense, in this manner. Sony had two spinoffs in its tangential Spider-Man universe on the slate for this year: Jared Leto’s Morbius, which would introduce the half-vampire; and the planned Venom sequel. Earlier this calendar year, Sony moved Morbius back to March 2021, so it made sense that Venom 2 (or, sorry, Venom: Let There Be Carnage) would shift to come after it.

This might suggest that, in an effort to establish continuity in these sequels, Morbius might have plot points that it wants to establish before Venom: Let There Be Carnage comes out. You would assume that Sony is building this side of its shared universe so that Tom Holland can one day play Spider-Man in these films, and take Venom to task. But we seem to be years away from that reality.

As for the subhed… well, it’s a mouthful. But it refers to the birth of a new villain in Cletus Kasady (Woody Harrelson), someone we met at the end of Venom who will be a headache for Eddie Brock (Tom Hardy). In the Marvel Comics, Cletus also bonds with the alien symbiote, but doesn’t have the sliver of goodness found in Brock. He’s a moral blackhole, a serial killer who uses his new powers to create… carnage. Get it?

Moving Venom: Let There Be Carnage to the summertime gives Sony back one seasonal tentpole that it lost in 2021. The studio was supposed to have Ghostbusters: Afterlife in movie theaters this summer, but that movie got moved to March of 2021. This does raise an interesting question about Sony and Marvel’s third Spider-Man movie, though. It was due to hit theaters July 2021. But can you see the studios going head to head with that much “web” content in the same season? This feels like Spider-Man 3 will be the next costumed shoe to drop as Hollywood continues to iron out its production wrinkles.