It seems that the Venom movie is still ON.
We've actually known for some time now, that the writing team behind Zombieland, Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick have been tapped to script the upcoming Spider-Man spinoff project for the popular symbiote-clad villain. However, that was six months ago, and since then, the duo has been dealing with Venom at a slow, but steady pace. As Wernick tells Sci-Fi:
"We've written two drafts of Venom, and the studio has it, and they're pushing forward in whatever ways they push forward."
When asked when the film would go into production, Wernick responds:
"We're not sure, [but] we've turned in our two drafts."
At this pace, the Venom project, which at one point, had been speculated for a shoot as early as 2010, is tentatively set for 2012. (At least, according to imdb.) Given the extremely crowded field of comic book films within the next few years, any kind of delay may ironically enough, actually be a good thing.
While the revelation of the Venom film staying alive may placate some fans, the fact remains, that we are still in the dark regarding the film's relationship with the existing Spider-Man film series of Sam Raimi. I've already discussed in great detail, the rather gaping plot hole in regards to the idea that the Venom of the Raimi series (played by Topher Grace) suffers from the stigma of being -- how do I put this? -- DEAD. DEADER THAN DEAD CAN BE. While the magic of fiction always enables us to create outrageous circumstances for a character's resurrection, Spider-Man 3 gave Venom a fate that would make any potential loophole LAME. The fact is, Venom got sabotaged big time in that film, not only regarding the way he was portrayed, but in any reasonable method for a return. The question (that's been asked many times already) then remains: Is it time to reboot this franchise? When asked about the relationship of the film to Raimi's, Wernick reponds:
"We can't really talk about that, unfortunately," the writer said before adding, "Basically, the studio and Marvel and the Arads are taking our drafts and going beyond and figuring out what's the next step."
Essentially, all that we know, is what we don't know. Personally, I think the Venom aspect alone, is reason enough to turn the page. While it is difficult to get a complete picture of this field, not knowing any details about Raimi's upcoming Spider-Man 4, we have seen some recent signs that the studio is planning for a "post-Raimi" Spider-Man franchise. (Meaning in all likelihood, a reboot.) Perhaps, after being pushed back to an even later date, Venom may be able to accommodate that Spider-Man universe. (Probably making it critical that any potential Spider-Man reboot not focus too much on the origin story.)
But, who knows? We may wake up one day and read that Disney managed to collect the scattered film rights to its Marvel franchises. In which case, we may get our wish, anyway.