Venom Will Live Again

venomYou loved him in Spider-Man 3. Well, actually, you kind of thought he could be better. Rest assured, because now Venom, the costume with a life of its/his own, is getting its/his own film. Just don’t pay any attention to what Sam Raimi is saying.

The news comes semi-hot off the Cinematical press. (Hey, we have to sleep sometime.) According to the movie blog, Sony has hired writers Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick to put together a script about the alien costume which corrupts reporter Eddie Brock (played by Topher Grace in S-M 3). The news comes shortly after Raimi issued a public apology via Empire for letting Spider-Man 3 turn into a webslinging turd.

While the first Spider-Man movie redefined the comic book film with its note-perfect translation of Lee-Ditko’s creation, by the third installment the franchise’s spider sense had been reduced to a dull buzz. The film divided its time between a sympathetic Sandman and Venom. The device of an suit which lends its wearer tremendous power while making them completely irritating also allowed Raimi to indulge in some of his worst Nutty Professor-isms.

Now, Raimi admits that there might have been too many fingers in this particular puddle of sentient black goo. He told Empire that he “didn’t really have creative control” over the third movie.

The best way for me to move forward on films, I realise … and this was a lesson I had to learn for myself … is that I’ve gotta be the singular voice that makes the creative choices on the film. I love Spider-Man so much that I’d like to continue telling Spider-Man stories, but only under those circumstances where I think I can honour him. I don’t think I can honour him any other way.

The Guardian‘s Ben Childs explains that there’s been speculation that producers insisted that Raimi shoe-horn the Venom storyline into an already overcrowded movie. Raimi was diplomatic when asked:

“I don’t even want to comment on Venom, because I know he’s a great character and all the fans love him. I never want to say anything bad about a much-beloved character because usually it turns out that I’m the one that doesn’t understand what makes it great.”

Translation: “I couldn’t give two shits about Venom.” The good news for fans is that a Venom movie could be a real possibility. For the rest of us, that’s $12 we can pocket come 2011. However, that won’t stop Cinematical beating the drums. When asked what he thought about the screenwriters behind Zombieland and Cruel Intentions 3 steering Venom’s resurrection, the site’s Scott Weinberg wasn’t so much all a-jiggle as on the verge of spontaneous combustion:

“Based only on the half-hour I spent talking movies with the screenwriters, I can say that IF there has to be a Venom movie, then these are the guys who can pull it off. They seem to understand the practical (studio) side of the project, the professional (screenwriter) perspective, and (best of all) the enthusiasm needed to make the movie cooool. They couldn’t divulge ANY tidbits at all, sorry! But at this early point, I’m feeling a bit more optimistic about Venom.”

Sadly, “wisdom” and “talent” are words that do not feature in that pull-quote. Whether it’s best to trust someone who spells “cool” with two additional “Os” is something best left to the reader to decide.

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