It's official. Sony is moving forward with Venom 2. Tom Hardy, Michelle Williams, and Woody Harrelson are returning along with screenwriter Kelly Marcel, who was brought in at the last minute for rewrites on the first installment. This is huge news, but it isn't exactly the biggest surprise either. Venom was a box office monster and was still at number 38 as of this past weekend. Globally, the movie has earned $855.5 million to date, with China contributing $271.7 million of that total.
Upon some negative reviews and sluggish ticket sales in North America, many Marvel fans did not expect to see Woody Harrelson back as Carnage for Venom 2. However, once the movie hit overseas, and China specifically, the movie took off, leaving little doubt to a potential sequel. Even with the breakout box office success, Sony was still careful about announcing plans for a sequel, which more than likely had to do with contracts for the returning actors, who may have been able to command some extra cast this time.
As for director Ruben Fleischer, it is not clear if he will return to direct Tom Hardy in the Venom sequel due to his involvement in Zombieland 2, but that has yet to be confirmed at this time. Fleischer has discussed wanting to come back, so it wouldn't be surprising to see the studio try and replicate the team that brought the successful movie on to the big screen. Kelly Marcel's past credits include Saving Mr. Banks and Fifty Shades of Grey. Additionally, she helped write the screenplay for Disney's Cruella, which is set to star Emma Stone.
While Venom wasn't welcomed by too many hardcore Marvel fans and critics, it was a fun popcorn movie with a lot of unexpected humor between Eddie Brock and the symbiote. While humor is often looked down upon in comic book movies, it really seemed to work in Venom, and one should hope that they carry on that fine line between ultra-serious comic book movie and violent fun. Also, with Michelle Williams returning, there's a chance that we'll get to see more of She-Venom on the big screen along with some Carnage and Venom action.
There is no release date set for Venom 2, but one would imagine that the screenplay is probably already being written. Up next for Sony's Spider-Man universe is the Morbius movie, which is set to star Jared Leto. With that being said, it's probably not out of the question to think of a late 2020 or early 2021 release date for Venom 2 if everything goes as planned. Sony isn't going to want to waste too much time and will want to strike while the iron is hot. With the addition of Carnage, we could see the sequel get embraced by fans even more than the first installment. The Venom 2 news comes to us courtesy of Variety.