It’s A Loss For Now, But An Investment For The Future.
Sony’s upcoming “Venom” film was originally billed as a no-holding-back R Rated take on the classic beloved character that would use its freedom from the hyper-kid-friendly Marvel Universe to have Venom do and say things that he never could with Marvel.
However, it appears recent developments have caused Sony executives to back down on that offer. According to a number of sources, such as this article on Movieweb, Sony is now pushing for more of a “hard PG-13” rating for the film. This means that Venom will still be a tad bit darker and more violent than the likes of Spider-Man Homecoming, Doctor Strange or Civil War, but he won’t be able to walk the same path as, say, Logan or Deadpool.
And although this might seem shocking, it’s a move that’s clearly been thought about for some time, as one can see due to the film’s distinct lack of any Red Band Trailers. For those not familiar, Red Band Trailers allow R-Rated films to put R-Rated content in their trailers. A film will normally release an “All Audiences” basic trailer and an “Appropriate Audiences” Red Band trailer, if it’s looking to go that route. And with Venom’s initial vision touting so heavily on it being an R-Rated film, Red Band footage seemed like a no-brainer. However, no Red Band footage was ever released, leading us to believe that this switch to PG-13 was in the works since before the release of the second trailer.
And although I feel like at this point it almost doesn’t even need to be said, this is most likely being done because the studio is hoping that Marvel will look to bring the character into their own Cinematic Universe. This would be a massive boon for both the studio and the fans, as the studio would have access to some of Disney’s massive budget and an excellent cast of signed-on actors, while fans would get to see Tom Hardy’s Venom facing off against Tom Holland’s Spider-Man.
In addition, Venom’s solo film has been previously stated to be based off of the Venom: Lethal Protector comic storyline, a line that sees Venom facing off against other symbiotes as well as the LIFE Foundation (Both of which he can be seen doing in the footage released for Venom 2018). This storyline bills Venom as more of an Anti-Hero than a villain, which might set him up to play a larger role in the Marvel Cinematic Universe moving forward (Or would at least make him a candidate to appear in more than a single film, which seems to be the shelf-life of the average MCU bad guy).
However, Marvel / Disney have not officially announced any plans to incorporate or even to consider using the character so far; At the moment, the only studio looking to collaborate appears to be Sony. Marvel / Disney may be holding back to see how the Venom film performs in theaters to decide whether it wants to invest in the character.
Venom releases on October 5th, 2018. If the studio does get the OK from Marvel to add in the connection to their universe, this could be accomplished in any scene with $30 worth of CGI and a pound of sand: 2 hours of post-production later, one dude fades to dust in the distance and the audience loses their minds.
God bless Thanos for killing half the universe in such a budget-friendly way.
Featured image Via Flickr / Brickset