Unlike most comic book movies, Venom centers around an anti-hero, rather than the traditional protagonist. Of course, this type of situation comes with the unique challenge of creating a villain that's unlike the typical bad guy in a superhero movie.
During an interview with EW at San Diego Comic-Con, Ahmed talked about what sets Drake apart from other villains that we've seen in the past.
"Well my character is a billionaire industrialist, he's an inventor, he's a bit of a genius, and he's really interested in trying to find a future for humanity as we face ecological collapse and war," Ahmed explained. "For him, the solution lies in colonizing other planets. So it's actually a kind of search for another suitable habitat for humanity, that leads him to the Symbiotes."
Later on in the interview, Ahmed was asked about playing the villain in a film that doesn't exactly have a hero. He responded by saying that the lines between heroes and villains are blurry, especially in a movie like Venom, and that his character believes that he's actually the one saving the world.
"No one thinks that they are the bad guy, that's the reality," the actor said. "People do crazy things, terrible things, but in their mind they justify it. They think that they're helping the world, helping the other person, helping themselves, they justify it in their own ways. So, for me, when I'm playing a character like Carlton Drake, I'm sure you'll think I'm crazy but I totally understand what he's doing and why he's doing it. He's trying to serve humanity and he just thinks that he's best placed to do that and he wants to find a future for the human race. And of course, as the most rich, powerful, successful, intelligent member of the human race, he should be at the center of that future as well. So, I think I'm playing the good guy, but that's sort of what everyone thinks."
Judging by Ahmed's words here, and the reaction to the Venom footage shown at Comic-Con, it sounds like this movie is going to be unlike every other entry to the genre that has come before.
You can check out EW's full interview with Ahmed, Tom Hardy, and Ruben Fleischer here.
Venom is set to hit theaters on October 5, 2018.