It is a difficult marriage, but they are trying.
That would be Tom hardy and Venom, the fearsome alien parasite launched a franchise in 2018. Global audiences fired critics and uploaded an account to the tune of $ 856 million to see the couple, which proved the film’s victory and introduced the sequel “Venom: Let There Be Carnage,” in theaters Friday. .
In the new film, the 44-year-old Hardy reappears on screen as lukewarm journalist Eddie Brock, who now finds himself as half of an odd couple with the relentlessly sardonic Venom, an otherworldly carnivore who has accepted the deal to eat chickens and chocolate instead of humans while under Eddie’s earthly roof.
While they are not in a pandemic, they are caught sharing a single body, mimicking the worst of couples fighting in confinement.
They are “100 percent an old couple,” says Hardy, speaking on Zoom from London, with her puppy Blue at his feet. “It is very clear that these two belong together. They can’t stand each other, but they can’t be without each other, ”especially against a new archenemy, Cletus Kasady / Carnage (Woody Harrelson).
A year and a half after the pandemic, Hardy appears on Zoom in typical fashion: he’s casually dressed in a yellow National Geographic sweatshirt, curses splashing his speech, a vape pen making guest appearances.
Preparing for a second film, in which Michelle Williams returns as Eddie’s ex and a new foe in Shriek (Naomie Harris), Hardy was not immune to cold critical reception (a positive rating of 30% on Rotten tomatoes) for your first foray.
Making the first movie was a “baptism of fire,” says Hardy. The fans liked it, but “the critics hated it,” he says, letting out a laugh. So yes, read reviews. “Anyone who says they don’t read criticism … I lean on the side of suspicion,” he says. to know so maybe I can do better. “
Hardy and screenwriter Kelly Marcel presented the studio with their vision for a sequel (Hardy produces and also has a story credit this time), which leans more toward the jokes and witty pleasures found in the first film, like when Eddie , took by Venom impulses, found in a lobster tank and takes a crunchy bite. (This time, Venom can go to a rave.)
On set, Hardy also voices Venom, acting against himself with a headset that transmits Venom’s prerecorded lines into his ear. Marcel used to rewrite dialogue on the spot, relaying new lines to Hardy through the same device.
“I don’t really know how he does it,” says Marcel, who befriended Hardy 20 years ago doing pub theater together in the UK. “He will come to work in the morning and direct the scene as Eddie and Venom. Literally in front of your eyes, (he) is changing from character to character and from voice to voice. At full speed.”
Andy Serkis, who occupies the director’s chair on “Venom 2,” occasionally relented and did his Gollum voice on “Lord of the Rings.” “There are often some jokes about who would win between Venom and Gollum,” says Marcel.
The film ended in San Francisco in early 2020, just a few weeks before the world crashed. That was its planned release date of October 2020.
“Honestly, the movie is better after you’ve had the extra time” for post-production, says Serkis, noting the biggest improvements in the final showdown with Carnage.
A student of tough-guy roles in movies like “Max Max: Fury Road,” “The Dark Knight Rises,” “The Revenant,” and “Warrior,” Hardy has been through these tough times like most parents: dressed in sweats trying keep calm and carry on.
“Stop-start, stop-start,” says the star, describing how school has been lately for her children. (He and his wife Charlotte Riley share two, ages 5 and 2; the oldest, 13, is from a previous relationship.) “That was more of a whiplash than floating around work.”
The star (now “vaccinated, grateful”) tasted baked sourdough like the rest of us, and paints a picture of life chasing her little ones through homeschooling months: “My kids are less than a meter tall “, He says. It was about “Crocs and three-quarter length shorts with belly and skinny, pale, with dark circles, bowed with two beings who need to feel safe.”
In his working life, he still struggles, despite having more influence on the franchise. “Tom is Tom,” says Marcel, both as “a force to be reckoned with” at 40 and when they met at 20 to do plays between concerts. “He is an incredibly energetic human being with a trillion ideas running through his head. The man does not stop working or moving ”.
But a sacred corner of Hollywood still eludes him: Venom playing in the sandbox with Spider-Man and the rest of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Currently, Marvel’s intellectual property is divided between Sony (where Venom lives) and Disney (where the Avengers hang out).
“Who wouldn’t want to campaign in some way to say, ‘Hey, I’m playing Venom. I want to be accepted into Marvel canon, even though all children have two different parents. I appreciate that there are a lot of legal issues here, but we are family! ‘ ” he smiles.
Could the MCU accept it as part of the family tree? “Even if we can’t go to each other’s barbecues yet? Could you maybe come to a barbecue one day? “