We are now just a few months away from the release of Sony's Venom film and the filmmakers are releasing more photos to help tease the release of the film based on Spider-Man's iconic symbiote-clad foe.
This time around, we got a chance to see the terrifying smile that Todd McFarlane originally designed for the character when Venom made his first appearance in the final page of Amazing Spider-Man #299 thirty years ago.
Discussing the character, the star of the film, Tom Hardy, admitted that the visual on the character was a major factor in getting him to play the role. He noted, “As far as Marvel characters, I have to say for me, Venom looks the coolest,” Hardy says with a laugh. “That sounds a bit shallow! But I appreciate that he has a kind of brazen swagger and a zero foxtrot attitude.”
That swagger is famously on display with that famous smile, which EW revealed in a series of promotional photos for the film.
Of course, the history of comic books is filled with villains who are famous for their grins, with the Joker being the most famous of that type of character. Right from his first appearance in 1940, the Joker has been killing people by a deadly poison that turns their mouths up in a gruesome smile. That plays into the depiction of Venom, as well.
Hardy further explained that he saw the character as having "a tragic clown element, which I find funny and is harmonious with some of the work that I like to do. There’s something funny about the circumstances of having a gift but it’s a tragic gift. It’s a superpower you don’t really want, but at the same time, you love it. It makes you feel special. He’s a reluctant hero and an anti-hero.” It is hard to hear "tragic clown" in the context of a comic book villain without thinking of the Joker.
That disturbing visage also plays into how the director of the film, Ruben Fleischer, sees the movie as partially a "body horror" film, as well. In addition, it will be a case where Hardy's Eddie Brock will have to learn how to co-exist with the symbiote part of his personality. As Fleischer notes, “Usually a human gets imbued with powers or an alien comes from outer space and has to figure out how to live on our Earth. But this is really about a relationship between two people who have to work together to create this hybrid symbiotic relationship.”
Arriving in theaters Oct. 5, Venom stars Tom Hardy, Riz Ahmed, Michelle Williams, Jenny Slate, Scott Haze and Reed Scott.