2018’s anti-superhero film Venom is a bit of a weird one. On one hand, it feels like a bizarre remnant of the 1990s and it’s kind of a mess. On the other, watching Tom Hardy go bananas is really fun. It’s a spectacle to behold and you should expect the same from Venom 2.
Sure, the first movie was generally savaged by critics, and because no one really cares what I think, it also made north of $850 million in theaters. All of that makes sense. It’s based on a hugely popular, well-loved comic book character, and the title character is one of Spider-Man’s most popular villains.
Given all of that, it was almost automatic Venom 2 was going to happen. Let’s dig into everything we know so far about the upcoming Venom sequel.
Let There Be Carnage
Venom 2 won’t actually be called Venom 2. The movie has gotten its full official title and they’re going with the sort of silly sounding title Venom: Let There Be Carnage. Obviously “Let There Be Carnage” is a reference to the movie’s plot, which will involve Venom squaring off against another symbiote named Carnage.
Venom 2’s Release Date
Venom opened in theaters on October 5, 2018. Shortly after, Sony reserved dates for two movies tied to Spider-Man. (There’s a long, complicated, in-depth saga about the cinematic rights of the Wall-Crawler. Too long to get into here.) The first was in July 2020 and was presumed to be the Jared Leto-starring Morbius.
The second date was October 2, 2020, and set aside for Venom 2, almost exactly two years after the first hit theaters. That date was cancelled due to the Coronavirus pandemic. Now Venom: Let There be Carnage will actually be released on June 25, 2021.
Tom Hardy signed a multi-film deal when he agreed to play Venom the first time, so he’ll return as investigative journalist Eddie Brock and his alien symbiote alter-ego. That’s good news. Watching him go nuts, walking down the street arguing with himself, or relievedly dunking himself in the lobster tank at an upscale restaurant, are the truest joys of Venom.
Academy Award-nominee Michelle Williams is also set to come back to the franchise. She reprises her role of Anne Weying, a district attorney who doubles as Eddie Brock’s love interest and former fiancé. For a brief moment in the first film, she got to be a symbiote, too. Maybe she’ll get another crack at it this time. And hopefully, she has better wigs than in the first movie, there are some questionable ones.
Reid Scott will also be back for Venom 2. He plays Dan Lewis, a doctor and Anne’s current boyfriend. The first film leaves the nature of Anne and Eddie’s relationship somewhat up in the air—they’re not together, but there’s definitely something still there—so there’s stuff for him to deal with. That said, he’ll likely have a relatively minor role in the story, much like the first film.
Venom had five credited writers. Venom 2, however, only has one for the time being. Kelly Marcel, who worked on the first film, returns for round two. And this time, she has a solo credit.
This next one is a bit strange as the character appears in Venom, though only at the end and only for a brief moment. As such, he’s kind of recurring, kind of a new addition. As the credits roll, we see Eddie Brock sit down in a maximum-security prison to interview serial killer Cletus Kasady, played by Woody Harrelson. Fans of the comics know that Cletus becomes another of Spider-Man’s major antagonists, the alien symbiote named Carnage.
New Cast For Venom 2
As mentioned, the biggest new(ish) addition to Venom 2 is Cletus Kasady/Carnage. We’ve seen set photos of both Tom Hardy and Woody Harrelson leak out to the public, as well as potential looks at Carnage himself.
Since he first appeared in the early 1990s, Carnage has had multiple hosts, though Kasady was the first and most prominent over the years. Carnage is another symbiote and often portrayed as the offspring of Venom, though we’ll have to wait and see if the movie sticks to that plot point or changes things up somehow. His powers are similar to his progenitor, though with a few new twists, wrinkles, and additions.
Also joining in on the fun is British actress Naomie Harris, another Academy Award-nominee. She signed on to play Shriek. Another Spider-Man villain created in the early 1990s, Shriek is usually shown as being criminally insane and having the power to manipulate sound. Most importantly for Venom 2, however, she’s also Cletus Kasady’s romantic partner. It wouldn’t be surprising to see her break him out of prison or something along those lines.
Irish actor Stephen Graham will also appear in Venom 2. A fantastic character actor, Graham is probably best known for playing Al Capone on HBO’s Boardwalk Empire, though he has more than 100 credits on his resume. At the moment, there’s no word on his role in this film.
Zombieland director Ruben Fleischer helmed Venom, though he was replaced for the sequel. Instead, Andy Serkis directs Venom 2. Though most known as an actor, especially for his work in motion capture in movies like The Lord of the Rings and the revamped Planet of the Apes franchise, he does have some directing experience. He led an adaptation of Rudyard Kipling’s The Jungle Book in 2018 and has directed a handful of other films.
The Plot Of Venom’s Sequel
As is the case with most big-budget comic book movies, we don’t know a ton about the plot. We’ve heard bits and pieces, rumors and speculation, but nothing official as the studio plays things close to the vest.
Producer Matt Tolmach told Cinema Blend that Venom 2 focuses on the relationship between Eddie Brock and Venom. He said:
“[T]he 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.”
While that doesn’t reveal much in the way of details, it does offer something as far as thematic and character concerns go. At the end of Venom, the two appear to have struck something of an accord, one that’s in line with the character’s antihero history. The symbiote gets to snack on people, but only as long as they’re bad guys. That’s sure to play a part moving forward.
With his introduction in the mid-credits scene, it’s also obvious that Cletus Kasady and Carnage play a major role in Venom 2. Most of us assumed that was the case, but it was confirmed when Cinematographer Robert Richardson (Once Upon a Time in Hollywood) revealed Carnage is indeed the main big bad.
How exactly this all plays out, we’ll just have to wait and see. There’s a lot of comic book history to mine and there’s definitely potential for big-time fun. However it plays out, fans are sure to be excited by the knowledge that the crowd-pleasing antagonist will get a big screen will finally get his due on the big screen.
Is Spider-Man in Venom 2?
Whether or not Spider-Man will appear in Venom 2 remains a big question on the minds of many fans. Tom Hardy seems to want us to think a major Spider-Man versus Venom faceoff is coming because he keeps teasing it by posting and then deleting horrifying images like this…
As we mentioned earlier, the Spider-Man movie rights are something of an epic saga. Sony has the rights, but they reached a deal with Marvel that allowed the Wall-Crawler to appear in the MCU in team-up movies as well as two of his own solo films. There was some contention late in 2019 about whether or not that would continue, but they reportedly reached a deal.
Though Spidey will remain in the MCU, many wonder if this new deal will also allow him to pop up in the Sony films. While characters like Venom, Carnage, and Morbius do have their own histories and stories, they’re all primarily known for their relationship to Spider-Man. Many devotees want to see them tussle on screen and there are many theories as to how this could happen.
If they do start to clash, there’s a good chance that Peter Parker could end up wearing the symbiote. He spends a fair amount of time wearing Venom black in the comics, and while the Venom universe isn’t quite following that origin story, it would be no surprise if things veered back in that direction.
Here’s what it might look like, if Tom Holland’s Peter Parker does end up wearing Eddie Brock’s symbiote companion…
Venom In Real Life
In a world that seems to keep getting stranger by the day, the internet now seems to believe the Venom symbiote is real and has actually just landed on Earth. No, I’m not kidding. Not really. Here’s the proof…
What the heck is that? That’s the question everyone seems to be asking. It looks and acts exactly like the Venom symbiote and it looks and acts like nothing else most people have ever seen.
People have been pinging scientists on Twitter to see if anyone can identify the creature. Thus far no one has. So until they do, let’s just say that Venom 2 seems to be happening in real life.