There’s been a lot of confusion across the internet as to the details regarding Sony’s Venom, Marvel’s MCU, and the sharing of Tom Holland‘s Peter Parker / Spider-Man in the two-studio deal. Luckily, Steve Weintraub got a chance to clear up some of that confusion while chatting with Holland for Spider-Man: Homecoming.
When asked if it was true that Venom–starring Tom Hardy in the title role–existed in a separate universe, Holland said:
Sadly, I think that is true. From my understanding, I think that is the case. I’d love to make a movie with Tom Hardy. If we ever got the chance to make a Venom movie together, that would be super-cool, but his movie would have to take place in the MCU because I’m not giving up my ticket in the MCU.
But maybe Sony/Marvel could tweak the rules of shared cinematic universes a bit just by having, say, Spider-Man swing across the establishing shot of the Venom movie. That wouldn’t automatically make the villain’s movie a part of the MCU, would it?
It would. It definitely would. And we’ll have to wait and see what happens. If it did happen, it would be very cool, but as of now, I know nothing about it.
Holland is certainly limited with how much he can say about the studios’ Spider-Plans, especially since the character is worth hundreds of millions, if not a billion-dollar-plus property, to both Marvel and Sony. So for some solid insight into how Spider-Man will be used going forward, Steve also had a chance to sit down with Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige and super-producer Amy Pascal. Here’s how they sorted out all things Spider-Man, being careful to separate Marvel’s comic universe from Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and Sony’s Marvel Universe:
Collider: Can Spider-Man be in an establishing shot swinging by in the Venom movie or does that immediately make him a part of the MCU, if you put that in there?
Kevin Feige: I think, if it looks like the MCU Spider-Man, that would probably be the case since that probably is smart. I think what they’re doing is smart in saying, “How do we make a great Venom movie?” and as I’ve already said, I don’t know much about it, but I know they started with casting Tom Hardy, which is pretty smart.
Amy Pascal: It’s pretty smart.
Collider: Just to be definitive, Spider-Man will not appear in any of these spinoffs for now.
Pascal: For now, correct. All of them are part of the Marvel comic universe. Not all of them are part of Marvel cinematic universe.
Collider: I’m of the opinion that you guys are making all these spin-offs at Sony where there’s gonna be these other characters, whatever it may be, all of those are in the same universe. Spidey will not be there until maybe he’s out of the Marvel universe and then who the hell knows what happens.
Pascal: I would say who the hell knows what happens.
Feige: But are Venom and Black Cat and stuff connected or no, you’re just making the movies, right?
Pascal: Right now, it’s sort of like Iron Man when you did the first Iron Man. Right now, these first movies are establishing these characters.
Feige: That’s very smart and we’ve talked before that when we started Iron Man, we didn’t sit down and go, “Let’s make a cinematic universe.” We said, “Let’s make a good Iron Man movie.”
Pascal: Sure, we said, “Let’s make a good movie.” But you know, it gets really fucked up when all people are talking about is the world of the franchise. You know people used to come to me and go, “I can make a franchise out of this for you. I can write a bible,” like for the most absurd things. And you’re like, “I don’t need a franchise. I just need a movie.” And it’s annoying.
So the main points you should take away from this discussion:
- Sony is focused on making good, standalone movies before getting caught up in shared universes.
- Spider-Man and the heroes and villains who are associated with him obviously exist as Marvel comics characters, but their cinematic equivalents will appear in separate continuities, at least for the foreseeable future.
- The MCU gets Spider-Man, Sony’s Marvel Universe gets Venom (and Black Cat, Silver Sable, Carnage, etc., etc.)