Tom Hardy to Star in ‘Venom’


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Tom Hardy

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Andrew White for The New York Times

He played a formidable villain for DC Comics, and now he’ll do the same for Marvel: Tom Hardy has signed on to lead “Venom,” a spinoff movie in Marvel’s expanding universe.

Mr. Hardy will play Eddie Brock, a vengeful reporter who fuses with a powerful alien parasite to become Venom. The character was previously played by Topher Grace in the 2007 film “Spider-Man 3,” as one of the web-slinger’s main antagonists.

“Venom,” a Sony production, is projected for release on Oct. 5, 2018; Ruben Fleischer (“Zombieland”) will direct.

Venom was introduced in 1988 and has floated through the Marvel Universe, appearing alongside not just Spider-Man but also Iron Man, Deadpool and the Hulk. He’s the latest in an extensive and growing web of Marvel characters onscreen. Tom Holland’s Spider-Man first showed up in 2016’s “Captain America: Civil War,” and he’ll soon be seen in his own movie, “Spider-Man: Homecoming,” arriving this summer.

Reports indicate that Sony’s Spider-Man series, which also may include films centered on the characters Silver Sable and Black Cat, will be largely unconnected to the coming “Avengers” movies. It’s unclear whether Spider-Man will appear in “Venom” at all.

For Mr. Hardy, this is his latest opportunity to break bad and distort his face. He played Bane in “The Dark Knight Rises,” starred in “Mad Max: Fury Road” and was nominated for an Oscar for his villainous turn in Alejandro G. Iñárritu’s “The Revenant.”

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