Over the last few years it has been obvious that Ruben Fleischer has been building up to direct a film of the size of Venom.
As well as cutting his teeth on music videos and various television and web series, the filmmaker has overseen “Zombieland,” “30 Minutes Or Less” and “Gangster Squad,” all of which merged his humor and mainstream aesthetic with an increasingly larger scale and ambition.
So turning a comic-book into a blockbuster was always likely to be Fleischer’s next step, which is exactly what he’s done with “Venom.”
Much like all of his previous work, “Venom” blends dark comedy with elements of horror to create a hugely entertaining piece of popcorn cinema.
I recently had the chance to talk to Fletcher about making “Venom,” during which time he talked me through the biggest lesson her learnt in production, as well as admitting, “This movie was a huge learning experience.”
“I had never really done anything with a fully CG character environment before. Everything I have done has been largely practical.”
“In ‘Gangster Squad’ we had to turn Los Angeles back to 1949, but that was largely accomplished through map paintings.”
“In this movie we had an entirely CG character. We’d shoot scenes and there would be nothing there. So we had to go back in and put Venom into them.”
“That was a huge learning curve. The whole finale is almost entirely CG or in an CG environment, even if there are real actors. So that was a huge learning curve for me.”
“As a filmmaker I just feel like it is a great resource to have. Moving forward I now just have a better understanding of visual effects, which are so much a part of modern filmmaking.”
Things were made a little easier for Fleischer by the presence of Tom Hardy, who he cast to play both Eddie Brock and Venom, and Fleischer admitted that the Oscar nominee immediately elevated the film with his incomparable performance.
“I was blown away by Tom’s performance. You read the script and you imagine the scenes but when he brought them to life it far exceeded my expectations and how I thought of the movie.”
“Especially with the physicality of it. He just brought a dimension that was so amazing to watch.”
“The scene in the apartment where his hands have to go up and down and you see Venom taking control of Eddie’s body, it was just so cool to see an actor bring that to life.”
“Venom” is now in cinemas.