The uber-versatile Andy Serkis has reportedly closed the deal to direct the sequel to 2018’s Venom for Sony, as The Hollywood Reporter revealed in an exclusive story. Serkis is best known for his work in front of the camera — sort of. Venom is based on the Marvel Comics character and one-time Spider-Man villain. The follow up film, which will see Tom Hardy return as Eddie Brock/Venom, is also rumored to star Woody Harrelson as Cletus Cassidy/Carnage.
Serkis first found geek-level fame when he starred as Gollum in the Lord of the Rings trilogy, and as Caesar in the most recent Planet of the Apes films; both roles being performed under motion-capture technology. He was able to perform as himself in Avengers: Age of Ultron and Black Panther, when he took on the role of Ulysses Klaue, a modern take of a classic Marvel villain. Serkis brings a wealth of knowledge of motion capture work to Venom, as the titular character is 100% CGI. In other words, Serkis’ signing as director of Venom 2 is a symbiotic match.
His most recent directorial effort was in Mowgli: Legend of the Jungle, a non-Disney retelling of Rudyard Kipling’s The Jungle Book. Andy Serkis has been in show business for 30 years, and many of his mo-cap performances were thought by many to be worthy of Oscar consideration. Now that he is turning to work more behind the camera, the actor of many faces and many hats can show off his immense talents in new and exciting ways.
Venom 2 is slated for release in 2020 for Sony. Popular rumors indicate that Tom Holland’s Peter Parker could make an appearance, pushing Tom Hardy’s Eddie Brock/Venom into the greater Marvel Cinematic Universe. Fans will have to wait and see, but until then, the film has a director in Andy Serkis, and it’s a bold, visionary choice.