With Peter Parker swinging around the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Sony is looking to kickstart its own franchise based on Spider-Man characters. The studio’s ambitious new universe will begin with Venom, directed by Zombieland‘s Ruben Fleischer. The film centers around Eddie Brock (Tom Hardy), an idealistic journalist who becomes host to a violent alien symbiote.
Sony and Fleischer have been working hard to do justice to the antihero. To that end, the team made the effort to remain faithful to the character’s comic book aesthetic, and also assembled an impressive cast to lead the film. Let’s take a look at the stars who’ll bring Venom to life on the big screen.
Tom Hardy as Eddie Brock
Tom Hardy stars as Eddie Brock/Venom, a journalist whose life turn upside down after he is joined with a mysterious alien creature. Venom is one of Spider-Man’s most popular villains in the comics, but the film will present the character in a more heroic light. That said, Venom will stay true to the horror elements of its titular antihero. In the movie, Brock will be taking on the Life Foundation, a mysterious company with nefarious plans.
Tom Hardy rose to prominence thanks to his starring role in 2008’s Bronson. He continued his success withWarrior, The Dark Knight Rises, Mad Max: Fury Road, and Dunkirk. The actor has also had a prominent presence in television over the years, having starred in the WWI-set drama Peaky Blinders and most recently in BBC’s critically-acclaimed Taboo.
Michelle Williams as Anne Weying
Michelle Williams is Anne Weying, Eddie Brock’s love interest. Not much is known about Weying’s role in Venom, but in the comics, she was Brock’s ex-wife. She was also a part-time super villain, as she became She-Venom after bonding with Eddie’s gooey alien companion. Given Weying’s comic book history, it will be exciting to see where Venom takes her.
Williams is one of the most talented actresses in Hollywood. She’s been honored for Oscar-nominated performances in films like Blue Valentine, Brokeback Mountain, Manchester by the Sea and My Week With Marylin. While Williams is famous for her dramatic roles, she’s no stranger to comedy, having starred opposite Amy Schumer in I Feel Pretty. Dawson’s Creek fans will also recognize Williams as Jen Lindley, one of the show’s main characters.
Riz Ahmed as Dr. Carlton Drake
Riz Ahmed plays Dr. Carlton Drake, the head of the Life Organization, an evil corporation responsible for conducting illegal experiments on people. Despite his friendly demeanor, Drake is despicable. As one of the film’s main villains, the scientist will be responsible for stirring up trouble in Eddie Brock’s life.
Ahmed began his career in the entertainment industry as a prolific hip hop artist, but he eventually moved on to film. The actor gained popularity through his roles in movies like The Road To Guantanamo, Shifty and Nightcrawler. Ahmed has also appeared in Jason Bourne and Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. He’s also been seen on several television shows, most prominently in The Night Of and Netflix’s The OA.
Jenny Slate plays a scientist who approaches Eddie Brock to help her deal with the Life Foundation. The name of her character is currently a mystery, but going by the movie’s second trailer, it looks like she’ll play a pivotal role in the story.
Slate gained popularity through her short film Marcel The Shell With Shoes On and her role in Alvin And The Chipmunks: Chipwrecked. Her breakout performance came in the 2014 drama, Obvious Child. The actress continued her success with voice-over roles in movies like The Lorax, Zootopia and Despicable Me 3. Slate is also familiar with superhero franchises, having voiced Harley Quinn in The Lego Batman Movie.
Woody Harrelson was cast in Venom in an undisclosed role. The actor rose to prominence playing Woody Boyd in the beloved TV series Cheers. He went on to garner critical acclaim on the big screen through his performances in films like White Men Can’t Jump, Indecent Proposal and The People vs. Larry Flynt; the latter earned Harrelson an Oscar nomination.
While he’s primarily known for smaller-scale roles, Harrelson is no stranger to the blockbuster environment. He has appeared in franchises like Planet of the Apes, The Hunger Games and, thanks to the upcoming Solo, Star Wars. Given his natural charm, it will be exciting to see what he brings to Eddie Brock’s first standalone adventure.
Much like the majority of the cast of Venom, Reid Scott’s character in the film is being kept a secret. Regardless of his role, however, Scott’s charisma and comedic sensibilities make him an exciting addition to the movie. The actor found great success on television early on in his career after starring in shows like It’s All Relative, My Boys and Motorcity.
In 2012, Scott became a household name thanks to his role as Dan Egan in HBO’s Emmy-winning Veep. The actor is also familiar with animation, having lent his voice to the titular character in Netflix’s Turbo FAST series. Venom will mark Scott’s first foray into blockbuster territory, so we’re looking forward to see what he brings to Sony’s Marvel universe.
Scott Haze joined Venom in late 2017. The actor’s role is a mystery at the moment but he’s rumored to be playing Roland Treece. In the comics, Treece is a ruthless businessman who helps the Life Foundation capture Eddie Brock. Haze may not be a household name yet, but he’s a star on the rise. The actor garnered critical praise from his outstanding performance in 2013’s Child of God.
Following his breakout performance, the actor went on to appear in a variety of other films, most prominently in The Sound And The Fury and Midnight Special. Haze is also a director. He helmed the documentary Mully, which enjoyed a positive reception upon release. As mentioned, it’s unclear who Haze will play in Venom, but we won’t be surprised if he ends up delivering one of the film’s standout performances.
The majority of the characters in Venom are shrouded in mystery at the moment. However, looking at the actors responsible for bringing the movie to life, it’s clear that Venom has the potential to become something truly special.
Venom will hit theaters on October 5, 2018.