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First Venom Trailer Doesn’t Convince Me That Movie is Really Happening

So the first trailer for the Venom movie arrived this morning. I have long disputed the idea that this movie was really happening. Any sort of Venom film has been in supposed pre-production for at least a decade. And the idea that Sony would push ahead with a solo Venom movie after the failure of their Amazing Spider-Man-verse seems ludicrous.

But here we are. A real trailer. I told myself that I wouldn’t believe this movie was happening until I at least saw a trailer.

And I’m still not sure a Venom movie is happening.

Can Sony not read a room? Do they not understand people’s doubts about their ability to make a standalone superhero movie? Do they not understand what we actually want to see in a Venom movie?

I understand the post-production CGI is going to take a lot of work. But why even release a teaser trailer if you don’t have a single frame of CGI Venom completed?

It is what it is, I suppose.

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6 Things I Want to See in a Venom Movie

Out of the blue, Sony announced a premiere date for their long-in-gestation Venom movie. They’ve even classified it as a ‘sci-fi/horror’ movie and plan to start production in the Fall. Maybe they’re actually going to go through with it, or maybe it’s all just smoke and mirrors to make Sony’s movie division look better for an upcoming sale. Whatever the case may be, it’s perfect for wild blog speculation!

Venom Movie List 01

He’s just a pawn in someone else’s game

I’m as much of a Venom fan as the next person. I love the living costume idea. I loved the Lethal Protector phase back in the 90s. Heck, I even love a bunch of the minor spin-off symbiotes. And considering Sony is now partnering with Marvel for their Spider-Man properties, I would be thrilled if this Venom movie is real and ties into Spider-Man: Homecoming!

So join me after the jump for my ideas on what we should see in a Venom movie! And I’d love to hear your own ideas in the comments!

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The Venom and Sinister Six Films Are Now Official

No sooner do I stun the world with my List of Six of potential Spider-Man spin-off movies than Sony Pictures rushes out a hurried press release about their plans for Venom and Sinister Six movies. Coincidence? I think it’s safe to say ‘no’. Clearly someone at Sony reads my blog, and after I set the Internet on fire with my suggestions, that someone realized they had to catch up.

Because that’s totally how things happen.

Stay classy, guys

Anyway, I don’t like to comment on movies at this stage of the game, where the studios have only announced a writer and director, because how often does that actually go somewhere? How many DC superhero films have been announced over the past few years? Justice League Dark? Lobo? The Metal Men? Please. If any of those movies ever get made, I’ll eat my hat. But Sony have already got Amazing Spider-Man 2 coming down the pipe, and this press release announces Amazing Spider-Man 3, so maybe they really want to expand this franchise a lot more. It’s a wonderful idea, at least.

Here’s the full press release for those interested:

In a move to forge a new legacy in the story of Peter Parker on screen, Sony Pictures Entertainment, in association with Marvel Entertainment, is developing several new projects in the Spider-Man franchise, with Alex Kurtzman, Roberto Orci, Jeff Pinkner, Ed Solomon, and Drew Goddard to collaborate on overseeing the developing story over several films that will be produced by Avi Arad and Matt Tolmach, it was announced today by Doug Belgrad,president of Columbia Pictures, and Hannah Minghella, president of Production for the studio.

The five writers, along with the two producers and Marc Webb, have formed a franchise brain trust to expand the universe for the brand and to develop a continuous tone and thread throughout the films. Under the deals, the studio announced that Kurtzman & Orci & Pinkner are writing the screenplay for The Amazing Spider-Man 3, which the studio hopes Webb will return to direct; the film will go into production next fall for release on June 10, 2016. In addition, the team will build on the cinematic foundation laid by Webb, Arad, and Tolmach in the first two movies. They will expand the franchise as Kurtzman & Orci & Solomon will write the screenplay for Venom, which Kurtzman will direct; also, Goddard will write, with an eye to direct, The Sinister Six, focusing on the villains in the franchise. Hannah Minghella and Rachel O’Connor will oversee the development and production of these films for the studio.

In tapping these five writers, the studio and the producers are guiding the future of the franchise with the writer/producers who have each played significant and key roles in developing such highly successful franchises, films, and series as Star Trek, Transformers, “Alias,” “Fringe,” Men
in Black, Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure, World War Z, “Lost,” Cloverfield, The Cabin in the Woods, and Marvel’s upcoming “Daredevil” series.

Commenting on the announcement, Belgrad said, “The Spider-Man film franchise is one of our studio’s greatest assets. We are thrilled with the creative team we have assembled to delve more deeply into the world that Marc, Avi and Matt have begun to explore in The Amazing Spider-Man and The Amazing Spider-Man 2. We believe that Marc, Alex, and Drew have uniquely exciting visions for how to expand the Spider-Man universe in each of these upcoming films.” Arad and Tolmach added, “This collaboration was born out of the great experience we and Marc had working with Alex, Bob, and Jeff on The Amazing Spider-Man 2. With more than fifty years’ wealth of stories in the comic books to draw upon for inspiration, the Spider-Man universe is truly boundless; in addition, the Spider-Man comics have the greatest rogues gallery of any series, and to have the chance to explore that on film is truly thrilling. Until now, we have approached each film as a separate, self-contained entity, but with this move, we have the opportunity to grow the franchise by looking to the future as we develop a continuous arc for the story. That is what Alex, Bob, Jeff, Ed, and Drew will do in this unprecedented collaboration, and we’re excited about the directions they are taking the character and the world.”

The most successful franchise in the history of Columbia Pictures, Spider-Man is embraced all over the world. The four Spider-Man films to date have taken in over $3.2 billion worldwide.

Spider-Man, Venom, The Sinister Six and other Spider-Man related characters are licensed to Sony by Marvel Entertainment.

The only name on there that I recognize is Drew Goddard, the guy who teamed up with Joss Whedon to make Cabin in the Woods. He’s also been put in charge of the Daredevil show on Netflix. The guy gets around, it seems, and probably has one of my dream jobs. How come everybody else always seems to have my dream job and not me?

Also, here’s a throwback to my earlier blogging: My chosen Sinister Six.

Review: Ultimate Comics: All-New Spider-Man #21

Here comes one of those talking heads issues that I love so much! And it’s pretty good, though more than a little weird. Miles and Ganke spend some quality time with Mary Jane Watson and Gwen Stacy talking about Venom. Personally, I would have liked a more sociable conversation, but we’re kind of in the middle of Venom War, so it makes sense that the big, black gooey guy is the focus of the conversation. Though Bendis makes the unfortunate misstep of bringing up that whole Gwen Stacy/Carnage fiasco. I thought we’d all silently agreed to put it behind us and never mention it again.

Ultimate Spider-Man #21

Oh well, it’s still an entertaining comic, even if it’s really just a refresher course in Ultimate Venom. We haven’t seen the character in years.

Comic Rating: 4/5: Good.

We don’t learn anything new about Venom or why he’s going after Spider-Man or his dad. It’s clear that Venom knows Peter Parker isn’t Spider-Man anymore, so what reason might Venom have for going after Miles? Gwen and MJ take a pretty huge leap in logic to suggest a reason, and I can’t say how well it flies. I think Bendis could have come up with something stronger. But at least I like the idea of MJ and Gwen becoming helpers for Miles. Plus I like the vibe between them and Ganke. It would be pretty cool if Ganke, MJ and Gwen became Miles’ support staff for his Spider-Man adventures. If only Miles and Ganke weren’t so young. I think a Gwen/Ganke romance would be pretty awesome/hilarious.

Still, just having MJ and Gwen show up really twists the knife of Peter Parker’s death a little bit more. Man, that guy died far too young. It’s horribly tragic. But it’s OK. Miles is still awesome.

Join me after the jump for a full synopsis and more review!

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Review: Ultimate Comics: All-New Spider-Man #20

I’ve always been a big fan of Venom. Even when the character was over-exposed in the 90s, I still loved him. Heck, I even like Topher Grace’s Venom from Spider-Man 3. He’s just a cool character and a cool concept, where the super-character’s costume itself is the super-power. Plus he’s big, he’s colored black and he’s a pretty badass level of ruthless. So Venom has always been cool. And when Brian Michael Bendis introduced Venom into the Ultimate Universe, he made him even cooler. So it’s exciting to see Venom come back, though it looks like he might be a new character.

Ultimate Spider-Man #20

Miles faces off against Venom with his father caught in the middle. That is some absolutely perfect drama for Ultimate Spider-Man.

Comic Rating: 5/5: Great.

This issue has it all! Action, adventure, comedy and desperately high stakes. There’s absolutely no guarantee that Miles’ father is safe. Peter Parker’s whole career started with the death of his Uncle Ben. Just because Jefferson has survived this long does not mean he’s going to stick around forever. So when Jefferson involves himself in the fight against Venom, it’s bad news for everybody. But good news for us, because this story has real power behind it. Not to mention it’s incredibly entertaining. The fight is one of the best Miles has been in, with Venom more than a match for this novice hero.

The dialogue is especially great. Miles remains funny in his own special way. He’s not the quip-a-minute Peter Parker, but he’s still quite humorous. And Venom is fantastic. He’s not a mindless monster, no matter how he looks, and his deadpan lines are especially cool. All of the characters are fantastic in this issue, and with the action and drama attached, it’s a great chapter of Ultimate Spider-Man.

Join me after the jump for a full synopsis and more review!

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