Venom Scores Strong Friday Night, On Pace For Massive Opening

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Though the new Venom movie has taken quite the beating from critics this week, the film’s box office performance sure doesn’t show it. After a record-breaking opening night ($10 million), and another $32.75 million on Friday, Eddie Brock’s first standalone outing is reportedly on target for a domestic opening weekend gross of $80 million.

To put things into perspective, this figure would easily trounce the October opening record previously held by 2013’s Gravity. Whether that means a sequel is on its way will largely depend on how well this $100 million movie can sustain its success over time and overseas, though the film’s respectable CinemaScore of B+ suggests that word of mouth will only do so much to harm Venom on a commercial level.

Sony have pinned a lot of their hopes on the pic proving sufficiently profitable, since the Ruben Fleischer-helmed film is intended to be the first building block in a whole new cinematic universe. The movie even sets up the symbiote’s next antagonist with a post-credits teaser that may not have been overly presumptuous after all.

As it stands, Tom Hardy is signed on for three of these flicks, and if the DCEU can get at least a few films’ worth of mileage in spite of shaky reviews, then perhaps Sony’s Universe of Marvel Characters still has some more life in it. If so, here’s hoping they can get to their own Wonder Woman-style bright spot sooner rather than later.

Venom may benefit from the titular symbiote’s well-known connection to Spider-Man, but if Sony are serious about creating its own comic book world, then they’ll have to convince audiences that the lesser-known characters in this aspiring franchise are just as exciting in their own right. Time will tell whether filmgoers will want to return to this Spidey-free spider-verse, but for now, things could be going a lot worse for the symbiote’s solo debut.

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