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– by David Kozlowski

Marvel and Sony’s Venom film, starring Tom Hardy (Dunkirk, The Dark Knight Rises), is beginning to take shape and there’s a definite buzz about this project. Fox has lined up a tremendous cast and crew, they’ve hired WETA to create the visual effects, and there’s a major emphasis on practical stunts (hand-to-hand and firearms) too. The film is slated to go into production later this month, for an October 2018 release.

Aside from the lack of Spider-Man or any connection the MCU, the only outstanding worry is the aggressive schedule — films of this scope and scale tend to require 3-4 months of shooting followed by up to a year of post-production (we’re obviously well inside this window). Sony is being pretty opaque about the story and the script, but I’m rather a fan of keeping the plot under wraps for as long as possible.

Related – Venom: 50 Shades Of Grey Writer Writing Latest Draft

So, as much as we know about the Venom film today, we still don’t really know a heckuva lot. ScreenGeek caught up with Venom’s original Marvel Comics creator, Todd McFarlane to get his opinion on the film. Though McFarlane is not part of the project, he’s a vital source of insight and understanding regarding this character. McFarlane expressed optimism about Hardy’s casting in the featured role:

“It’ll be interesting. I’ve seen some movies of his where he can bring anger and a wide personality to it. To me, I think Tom Hardy’s going to be as good as whatever Venom looks like. We all know Tom’s going to act. He’s going to do a good job. So now what’s Venom gonna look like? It’s an R-rated movie, how ‘R’ are they going to go? To me, that’s the question. Are they going to go a ‘little bit R’? Venom’s a monster to me, and to me – are they going to make him a monster or are they going to make him a man? Are they going to humanize him? That’s what we gotta find out.”

The film’s producers have cited John Carpenter and David Cronenberg as inspirations, as they strive to create an R-rated, horror/sci-fi Venom film. Carpenter fans know that his films emphasize shadows, surprise, shock, and graphic violence in classics movies like Halloween (1978), The Fog (1980), and The Thing (1982). Cronenberg’s works include The Dead Zone (1983), The Fly (1986), and A History of Violence (2005). If Venom can somehow mine some magic from these amazing films, we’re definitely in for something cool.

However, McFarlane raises some legitimate questions about the appearance of Venom and the willingness of the producers to go really dark. Venom (along with Hellboy and Spawn) has an opportunity to carve out a new sub-genre in the superhero space, let’s hope that everyone involved with the film has the guts to lean into the dirt and the blood and the grit, which is necessary to bring this monster to life.

Do you agree with McFarlane’s comments about Venom? Let us know in the comments down below!

Venom hits theaters on October 5, 2018.

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SOURCE: ScreenGeek

David Kozlowski is a writer, podcaster, and visual artist. A U.S. Army veteran, David worked 20 years in the videogame industry and is a graduate of Arizona State University's Film and Media Studies.