Venom has been portrayed twice in live-action movies, with his first appearance coming from Topher Grace in Sam Raimi's Spider-Man 3. Grace made his Marvel debut as Eddie Brock in the 2007 film, where he went up against Tobey Maguire's hero. The threequel's portrayal of the villain was less than popular among fans and critics alike, which consequently put the plans for a solo project on hold.
11 years after Grace's appearance as the iconic Spider-Man villain, Tom Hardy took a crack at the symbiote antihero in 2018's Venom. Unlike Spider-Man 3, the actor's portrayal in the character's solo adventure was an overall success, which ultimately lead to a sequel receiving the greenlight.
With Spider-Man: No Way Home pushing the Multiverse to the forefront, this led to the question of how many alternate iterations of past characters could appear. While Raimi villains like Willem Dafoe's Green Goblin and Thomas Haden Church's Sandman got the call, Grace's Venom was not involved in any form in the film. Instead, Hardy's version was given the spotlight in its post-credits scene.
Even though Grace missed out on a chance to reprise his role, he recently noted he had ideas for a potential Marvel return.
Topher Grace's Wild Idea for Venom 2 Ad
Spider-Man 3 actor Topher Grace sat down as a guest on the latest episode of Late Night with Seth Meyers to talk about his scrapped idea to create an ad that is tied to Tom Hardy's Venom: Let There Be Carnage.
Grace revealed that he pitched an idea for an ad that would serve as a mini crossover between his new sitcom from ABC, Home Economics, and the Venom sequel, but he said that Sony and Disney "couldn't figure it out."
"I actually had this idea. We couldn’t make it work as an ad. Because Home Economics premiered literally like, one day from when Venom 2 was gonna premiere. And I was like, 'We should do an ad.' They just couldn’t -- It was, like, Sony and Disney, and they couldn’t figure it out."
Despite that, the veteran actor still unveiled his idea for the ad, with it mainly focusing on his Home Economics character hilariously mocking Hardy's Eddie Brock in the sequel:
"Where all of our characters on “Home Economics” were sitting watching the trailer for Venom 2. And I just wanted my character to be, like, not into it. So, I’m like, 'Who even is this guy?' They go, 'Oh, he’s so jacked. He looks great.' I’m like, 'I don’t know, I don’t know.' Like, 'Who is Tom Hardy?' And they’re like, 'You know, ‘Mad Max’ and, like, ’Dunkirk.' I’m like, 'Yeah, but is he, like, a good actor?' And they’ll, 'Yeah, he’s been nominated for an Academy Award.' I’m like, 'Okay, but, like, comic-book villain?' And they’re like, 'Bane, yeah. He’s, like, amazing!'"
Will Topher Grace Return as Venom?
Topher Grace's latest reveal indicates that he still has a passion for Venom, which is notable, especially after the negative reviews about his portrayal in Spider-Man 3. Interestingly enough, this isn't the first time that Grace has tried to get involved with the Spider-Verse plans by Sony.
Back in September 2021, the former Marvel actor gave a sarcastic response on a Reddit Q&A when a fan asked if he would appear as Venom in No Way Home. While hilariously claiming that he's in the movie, Grace also shared that the threequel would also have "some actors from the original 70s Spiderman show, Aquaman, and Batman (Affleck, not Keaton)."
Based on the actor's remarks, it's reasonable to assume that he would be willing to be involved in a future Spider-Man film or spinoff. This could serve as his own way of redemption.
Marvel actors who portrayed different characters in the past have been given new opportunities to either reprise their previous role or nab a new one entirely. Given Grace's continued enthusiasm for the role, it's possible that he could be considered for a future project.
Venom: Let There Be Carnage's post-credits scene teased that the titular symbiote recognized Tom Holland's Spider-Man even though they hadn't yet interacted. This seems to suggest that Venom's Hive mind is connected to the vast Multiverse, thus implying that Grace's symbiote is the reason why Hardy's version recognized the web-slinger. If this is the case, then this could mean that Grace's version might be revisited through a flashback in order to strengthen those previous ties.
Spider-Man: No Way Home is still playing in theaters worldwide.