Venom: Let There Be Carnage clocked a PG-13 rating despite many fans of the Marvel Comics symbiote characters hoping for a more ruthless film that would push an R-Rating. The titular Carnage character, Cletus Kasady portrayed by Woody Harrelson, is making his big screen debut. This is a big red menace from the books that is known for combining a ruthless serial killer with a violent symbiote that loves eating heads and ripping people apart. While none of that is going to be explicitly brought to the Venom sequel, star Tom Hardy and director Andy Serkis revealed to ComicBook.com they did consider an R-Rating for the film but ultimately pushed PG-13 as far as they could to keep the movie accessible to a larger audience.
"100% we considered it," Hardy said. "With all of these symbiotes, you know, you consider it. You read the comic books and it is extreme, but that's not what we're here to do. We came here to make a movie which, and correct me if I'm wrong, I mean, there's a law and a rule into creating a movie that's accessible to a lot of people, as well as that caters for everybody, including the hardcore fans. So I hope the hardcore fans at least take home that they look at Carnage and go, 'Yeah, I recognize Carnage from the comic books. I'm happy with that.' And yeah, no, we didn't bite everybody's head off, but we did stick a tongue down someone's throat pretty... and managed to come in at a level of rating which is reputable so that grandma can come but also I'll come watch it too."
Serkis, who checked in to direct the sequel after Zombieland director Ruben Fleischer was the helm of the first, seems to be channeling his inner Hitchcock with some of the Carnage moments. "Sometimes leaving things to the imagination is as powerful too," Serkis said. "We pushed it as far as we could possibly go, but with some room to go in people's heads. That character is pretty scary and the kind of the truth of where that character emanates from and Cletus Kasady is a character that is amplified through Carnage, does a lot of the work. So I think we certainly fulfill a lot of the essence of Carnage."
As the story goes, Venom: Let There Be Carnage follows the lead of its predecessor and most Marvel movies with a PG-13 rating. R-rated movies have proved to be successful, including one of Marvel's biggest box office draws in Deadpool and Deadpool 2. Both of those films, along with the acclaimed Logan, came from Fox while the studio was a separate entity from Disney. Neither Sony's Spider-Man movies (which Venom qualifies as) nor Disney's Avengers franchises have put out an R-rated title in the Marvel franchises yet. The Suicide Squad, a DC Comics title, released in theaters and on HBO Max with a slew of violence and nudity and doubles down on it with the Peacemaker series coming in early 2022.
Did you want Venom: Let There Be Carnage to be R-rated? Share your thoughts in the comment section or send them my way on Instagram! Venom: Let There Be Carnage hits theaters on October 1.