The interwebs has found it’s new plaything for the week and it came courtesy of the Marvel Cinematic Universes Kevin Feige (Who essentially runs the whole show over at the MCU). During an interview with Feige and Amy Pascal (the former head of Sony Pictures who is helping produce Spider-Man: Homecoming), Pascal made some announcements that made the internet explode. Perhaps out of turn, she stated that the recently announced Sony Spider-Man spin-off, Venom (Starring Tom Hardy), will indeed be part of the MCU:
“Well those movies will all take place in the world that we are now creating for Peter Parker. They’ll be adjuncts to it, it may be different locations but it will still all be in the same world, and they will be connected to each other as well.”
That bit of news is huge as well, as a lot of people seemed to be ready to boycott the film if it wasn’t controlled by the people over at the MCU, or at least connected to Spider-Man (The entire reason Venom, as a character, exists at all). She continued, with Feige at her side:
“There’s a chance [that Peter Parker will appear]. There’s always a chance. I think one of the things that Kevin has done with Marvel that was so brilliant is by bringing the fans along and making each movie seem like a chapter in a book, that you have to read that chapter in order to go forward. And I think the investment that the fans get to feel in being a part of a larger story and understanding what’s happening, I think is something that I know Sony would want to emulate.”
So, while that news made fanboys emotions implode (As people have been waiting for a PROPER movie Venom since he was introduced in the 80’s), it was Feige’s reaction that ended up getting all the press. In the clip, Feige’s expression is about as dead as one can be, until he feigns a smile when the interviewer asks Pascal if there’s a chance Peter Parker will show up in the film’s Venom or the Blackcat/Silver Sable mash-up (that no one asked for or wants).
While Feige has yet to comment on the Pascal news or his reaction, one has to think that Pascal isn’t making this up. Perhaps he wanted to announce this at an event. That would make some sense as Disney’s version of Comic-con (For Disney properties), D23, is less than a month away. The news of the Venom casting was recent as well, so it seems like perhaps the Venom project is something that has Feige’s name on it and he wanted to announce it sometime other than in one of 50 interviews he and Pascal had to do for Homecoming. Either way, if this does ring true, it could mean great things for Spider-Man and his rogues’ gallery. The announcement of the Venom project was met with groans and boos from the internet, as people obviously didn’t want to see Spider-Man’s (arguably) best Villain exist without his nemesis to fight. While in the comics the Venom symbiote has moved on to bigger and better things (From Eddie Brock to Flash Thompson) as Agent Venom, Spider-Man still needs to rock the black suit at some point. He just has to.
Perhaps Sony reacted similarly to Feige when they saw the reaction from the internet and decided to give Marvel even more control over their biggest intellectual property. There were some rumors going around online a while back that Sony was going to take Spider-Man “back” (creatively) after the sequel to Homecoming, but that rumor was recently squashed by Spider-Man himself, Tom Holland, who said that Homecoming was the first film of a Spider-Man trilogy in the MCU. Considering his involvement in Avengers: Infinity War (and it’s follow-up in 2019), it’s safe to think that Venom has to be connected to the MCU in some way, even if it’s an Agents of SHIELD/Defenders way. You’d think that Sony would welcome Marvel’s involvement, as their last two attempts at Spider-Man films grossed near or less than the first Guardians of the Galaxy at the box office. Something that is unheard of considering the characters popularity (and the Guardians’ relatively obscurity at the time), he sells more merchandise than Batman and Superman combined and the first Tobey Maguire Spider-Man films was the first film to ever cross $100 million in a single weekend, and it’s sequels each broke that record as the highest grossing opening weekend ever (at the time).
There have been reports recently that Spider-Man: Homecoming has been tracking to open lower (at the box office) than people expected. That may show that people are sick of what seems to be a constant reboot of the character, even despite the amazing (get it?) reception he got in Captain America: Civil War, and the fact that Iron Man himself, Tony Stark, is in Homecoming. While Marvel and Sony really had no choice but to reboot the character (Especially as Andrew Garfield showed no interest in returning to the character), seeing the third version of Spider-Man since 2002 is a bit much, even for really big fans. Sony would be insane to take the character back, even if it wants to build it’s own cinematic “Spider-verse”, that they’ve been trying to establish that since Amazing Spider-Man 2. Considering that that was a disaster, they’d be better off letting Marvel expand their universe as part of its universe. Considering Sony gets all of the revenue from any Spider-Man property and Marvel does all the work, it’s win-win. But, Sony has shown its ineptitude multiple times now so we all may end up pulling a Sad Feige come next year when Venom comes out and it’s a random standalone film that is nothing more than a cash grab. It just makes no (Spider) sense.