MarvelBlog News for October 4th, 2021
This week, an ugly divorce evolved into the unlikeliest of reconciliations. And when two symbiotes collided, everyone wanted to watch.
Let’s catch up in this week’s MarvelBlog News update.
Since March of 2020, all would-be blockbuster movies have suffered the same fate.
Nervous film executives have debated when and how to release these titles, leading to dozens of disastrous outcomes.
A few weeks ago, Disney unintentionally provided a bit of clarity to one of its competitors, Sony.
Sony’s next title, Venom: Let There Be Carnage, remained in limbo until Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings tore up the box office.
After that, Sony took the unusual step of not just delaying Venom 2 into 2022; the studio pushed up its release date by two weeks!
This past weekend, Sony reaped the rewards of this bold decision, as Venom: Let There Be Carnage became one of the best three box office winners during the pandemic.
Venom 2 opened to $90.1 million, one of the best October openings ever.
Analysts believed that the sequel never had a shot at the record held by Joker, which grossed $96.2 million…but it got shockingly close.
Meanwhile, Let There Be Carnage easily bested Venom’s $80.2 million, which is shocking given the past 18 months.
Venom 2 also nuked Black Widow’s $80 million opening and surpassed Shang-Chi’s $75.4 million during its first weekend.
So, comic books fans have just proven once again that they dominate the film industry.
After all, every film I have mentioned, including Joker, involves a comic book character. Not coincidentally, they’re among the biggest blockbusters ever.
With Venom 2, it has turned into the biggest opening during the pandemic, easily topping Black Widow.
For a film that didn’t have a confirmed release date a month ago, that’s an astounding reversal of fortune.
Venom By the Numbers
In the process, Venom 2 joins A Quiet Place II, which nearly matched its predecessor’s box office despite the pandemic constraints.
A Quiet Place part II opened with $2.5 million less than its predecessor. Let There Be Carnage performed ever better than its original, winning by nearly $10 million.
Given everything that has gone wrong at the box office during the last 18 months, that’s legitimately the best-case scenario for Sony…and then some.
By the numbers, the sequel held relatively well in audience reception, too. Both Venom and Let There Be Carnage earned B+ Cinemascores.
As a reminder, anything under an A- isn’t that great, more like a C grade in academics.
Both films have proven a bit divisive, as the Venom character can be hard to root for, what with all the eating people and all.
PostTrak gave the sequel a 76 percent score, down a touch from Venom’s 80 percent. Critics vastly preferred the sequel, though.
Venom earned a critic score of only 30 percent and an 81 percent audience score. The sequel has fared much better at 59 percent and 86 percent.
Objectively, Let There Be Carnage is the superior movie, and that’s before we factor in that jaw-dropping post-credits scene that I won’t discuss here yet.
Too few people have watched the film to talk about spoilers, no matter how massive they are.
Still, one overriding point remains in any discussion of Venom 2. In early August, as the Delta variant set back society, this film appeared cursed.
Now, we’re talking about it as one of the two of the three greatest success stories in cinema during the pandemic.
Sony executives are breaking out the champagne right now, and this party might last for weeks. They’ve earned it!
An Unlikely Reunion
At some point in your life, you’ve had that one friend. You know the one I mean.
They’re in a terrible relationship, and you cannot stand to be around the couple when they’re together.
These two fight all the time and have absolutely nothing in common save for the enjoyment of causing one another misery.
So, you root for them to break up while being outwardly supportive. Then, you finally get your wish, only for the toxic duo to reunite months later.
At this point, your friend remembers all the things you said about how they were better off without their romantic partner.
Now, you’re on the outs, and you don’t know what happened or why it’s your fault.
Where am I going with this? Scarlett Johansson and The Walt Disney Company just got back together.
In the wake of this news, I’m convinced that world peace is possible. It’s that unlikely a turn of events.
A few weeks ago, Johansson’s team filed suit against Disney, claiming they owed her another $80+ million.
Disney’s retort was the kind you do when you want to not just burn the bridge but also salt the earth.
Then, the company relented on September 30th, the day before Disney knew it would receive tons of positive publicity for Walt Disney World’s 50th anniversary.
Disney chose to settle with Johansson for what is reportedly around $40-$45 million. In exchange, the actress has dropped the lawsuit.
Also, Johansson will once again produce a Tower of Terror movie, which is great news for Disney theme park fans.
Analysts remain divided about which party won, but the whole thing seems like it should have been resolved the same way in July.
With two massive stories, everything else falls by the wayside a bit. Here are a few quick hitters for you, though.
Xbox Game Pass subscribers are in for a treat. The Marvel’s Avengers game that I’ve mentioned several times is now free as a part of the service.
Yes, that includes the DLC, even Black Panther: War for Wakanda, which just came out. So, if you’ve wanted to play it, grab your Xbox controller!
Sam Raimi, director of the original Spider-Man franchise, just revealed something fascinating during a Collider interview.
Raimi hesitated to direct Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness because of…Venom.
He read so much criticism of his most recent comic book movie, Spider-Man 3. Much of it centered on the usage of Eddie Brock, aka Venom.
Raimi confessed that he had the character forced on him by Marvel. But, unfortunately, he didn’t understand Venom enough to implement the character well.
As such, the film suffered and made him reticent to film any other comic book movies. But, thankfully, he’s back and ready to deliver one of the seminal 2022 blockbusters.
In theme park news, Disney confirmed what we already knew. Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind will debut at some time in 2022.
In the interim, Imagineers are prepping what is now known as the Wonders of Xandar pavilion at EPCOT.
You’ll soon get to visit a real version of an alien world in the MCU!
Finally, if you want to rewatch Blade this holiday season, HBO Max has added it this month.
Blade II is also available, and I’m here to tell you that it holds up exceptionally well.
Blade: Trinity is there, too, if you want to watch HHH prove that he’s nowhere near The Rock’s level as an actor.