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Not many people could've predicted Venom's phenomenal box office success. While it wasn't given the kindest critical reviews, filmgoers worldwide came out in droves to see Tom Hardy's take on the popular antagonistic/anti-hero Marvel character (even though everybody's friendly neighborhood Spider-Man was nowhere to be found). Following the money, Sony gave the green light Venom 2, which was later officially titled Venom: Let There Be Carnage. Details surrounding the plot and what we can expect from this blockbuster sequel are few and far between, but here's what we know about it at the moment.
The Current Release Date Is June 25th, 2021
Venom: Let There Be Carnage is currently slated to be released on June 25th, 2021. The sequel was originally scheduled to hit theaters on October 2, 2020, but the date was pushed back due to the health crisis. There's no guarantee that it'll come out in June 2021, but we'll see!
It's Currently In Post-Production (Though Reshoots Are Currently Uncertain)
While Venom 2 was able to finish its production schedule, the movie faces a few challenges in the midst of post-production. The editing team started work on the movie in London, but when the editor returned to the United States, Andy Serkis (more on him in a bit) needed to work remotely as the COVID pandemic prevented them from working in the same office. But while the team is finding ways to put the film together, one wonders if the sequel will need any reshoots and whether or not they can do any with the ways things are now. Reshoots played a heavy hand during Venom. In fact, they're often a key component of any blockbuster. Will Venom 2 be unable to do any reshoots before it's released next summer (if it's actually released by then)?
The Venom 2 Cast Members
Tom Hardy will reprise his dual role as Eddie Brock/Venom. No surprise there.
Naomie Harris joins the cast to play the villainous character known as Shriek. The antagonistic personality is often known for teaming up with Carnage using her cerebral powers.
Michelle Williams returns to reprise her role as Anne Weying, Eddie Brock's ex-fiancée. It's unclear how exactly she'll factor into the plot this time. Since it was teased in the first movie, will she once again become She-Venom?
Reid Scott will reprise his role as Dan Lewis, Anne's new boyfriend and the doctor who tries to help Eddie after he becomes infected by his alien symbiote.
Stephen Graham has joined this blockbuster sequel in a mysterious role.
Sean Delaney has also joined the cast in an unknown role.
The Sequel Will Be Directed By Andy Serkis
With Ruben Fleischer unavailable to return to the director's chair, as he was apparently still finishing up 2019's Zombieland: Double Tap at the time, Sony had a few choices in mind for this forthcoming blockbuster. With a list of hopefuls that reportedly included Travis Knight, Rupert Wyatt and Rupert Sanders, Andy Serkis ended up securing the job, due in part to his long history of working both as an actor and filmmaker with motion-capture VFX. While Serkis is best known for playing Gollum in The Lord of the Rings franchise and Caesar in the Planet of the Apes prequel trilogy, Serkis has quickly built up a director's resume for himself. He served as a second unit director on The Hobbit trilogy, and he helmed 2017's drama Breathe and Netflix's Mowgli: Legend of the Jungle.
Kelly Marcel Returned To Write The Screenplay
While Jeff Pinker & Scott Rosenberg (Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, Jumanji: The Next Level) wrote the story and script for Venom, Kelly Marcel — who also shaped it up — is the only scribe who returned to work on the sequel. As a writer, Marcel's name is attached to some high-profile projects, including Saving Mr. Banks and Fifty Shades of Grey. She was also the creator of the short-lived Terra Nova, and she co-wrote Disney's upcoming Cruella. Marcel and Tom Hardy have been good friends for years, notably doing uncredited rewrites on 2008's Bronson, and Hardy's likely the one who convinced Sony to bring her back. There are also reports that Hardy might've helped with the script.
Venom 2 Will Spend More Time With Eddie And Venom
While Venom wasn't without its flaws, there's one aspect to Sony's Marvel adaptation that won over many viewers: the symbiotic relationship between Eddie Brock and Venom, both of whom were played by Tom Hardy. The strange, unsettling, intriguing and even somewhat romantic courtship between this disgraced reporter and his gooey friend was at the heart of this anti-hero story, and their sequences together were among the movie's better beats. Thankfully, the producers have listened to the criticism and feedback from audiences, and decided to spend more time focused on their partnership in an effort to appeal to the large swaths of people who showed up to see the 2018 movie. Here's what producer Matt Tolmach said about this decision:
[Fans] love that relationship. What people say all the time is the relationship between Eddie and Venom is… I just want to spend more time with those guys. And that's such a testament to Tom Hardy, who obviously played both parts. It's similar to, and I'm not just trying to bring back to Jumanji, but it's the characters. It's the thing you want to hear when you launch a franchise is that what works is the heart of the movie. And the heart of Venom was always the relationship between Eddie and Venom. These two characters, these two sides that had to figure out how to live together and that were somehow better together than they were separately, or more successful, and what that meant.
It'll be interesting to see how Eddie Brock and the symbiote's relationship has changed since we last saw them, and what they'll have to go through together during the sequel.
The Producers Considered Making An R-Rated Sequel Based On Joker's Billion-Dollar Success
While moviegoers were initially led to believe that Venom might tout an R rating, those hopes were ultimately dashed when the comic book adaptation was stamped with an MPAA-certified PG-13 rating. Whether or not Venom was ever meant to be R-rated, the movie certainly found an audience. When it comes to its box office success, there's little doubt in the producers' eyes that its teen-friendly rating helped it gain a massive audience. As cameras rolled on this sequel, however, Joker made a billion dollars worldwide, despite its R rating. With that said, while the producers haven't decided officially (or, at least, publicly) on the rating, Matt Tolmach admits that they've considered the possibility of giving this one an R rating, though they don't want to turn away the younger audiences who showed up the last time around.
It Was Shot By Oscar-Winning Cinematographer Robert Richardson
The original Venom had the benefit of having Oscar-nominated cinematographer Matthew Libatique (Black Swan, A Star Is Born) on hand to shoot the movie. While he wasn't able to return for the sequel, the production wasn't hurting in the visual department. Director Andy Serkis hired acclaimed cinematographer Robert Richardson to manage the camera this time around. The three-time Oscar-winning D.P. is behind many acclaimed titles, including (but not limited to), Platoon, Born on the Fourth of July, JFK, The Aviator, Inglorious Basterds, Hugo, Django Unchained, Kill Bill: Vol. 1 & 2, Wall Street, The Hateful Eight and, most recently, Once Upon A Time In Hollywood. Richardson also shot Serkis' directorial debut, Breathe, and he agreed to work on the filmmaker's latest directorial feature. With such a prestigious cinematographer on hand, Venom 2 should hopefully look great.
Filming Took Place In England And San Francisco
San Francisco played a prominent role in 2018's Venom, though production was split between this city, Atlanta and New York City. When it comes to Venom: Let There Be Carnage, production was shot overseas. Specifically, they filmed the movie at Leavesden Studios in Hertfordshire, England under the working title Fillmore. But earlier this year, additional production began in San Francisco. It appears that the movie finished production and began post-production shortly before many film productions were forced to shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Director Andy Serkis Claims The Release Date Delay Will Give The Post-Production Team More Time To Work On The Special Effects
Although Venom 2's release is in a fluid position, Andy Serkis is looking at the positives. Specifically, he believes the delayed date allows his post-production crew to have more time to work on the special effects. It'll also (hopefully) allow viewers to feel more comfortable going back to theaters.
Are you excited for Venom: Let There Be Carnage? Let us know in the comments!