When the symbiote says, "We are Venom," it isn't kidding. Even though Eddie Brock and his BFF have only made two official live-action appearances to date, there have been a plethora of actors who have portrayed Venom in other mediums.
Much like the role of Spider-Man or Superman, it's a part that transcends the actor playing it. It's larger than life and will live on in popular culture for decades to come. Even so, there have been 10 actors who've staked the role of Venom as their own. Also, don't forget to let us know who you think did it better.
10. Topher Grace
Look, even Topher Grace knows he wasn't the best choice for Venom in Spider-Man 3. In hindsight, though, there's something about his portrayal of the Spidey foe that stays with you. It's campy and over the top, but it's a guilty pleasure and product of its time.
Perhaps the biggest disappointment is that Venom didn't feature much in the film until the third act. As one of the biggest names in Spider-Man history, it was insulting how he was crammed into the tail end when he should've been the core focus. The better idea would've been to close the movie with Eddie Brock bonding with the symbiote and then introduce Venom in Spider-Man 4.
9. Brian Drummond
For many fans, it didn't make sense why Spider-Man: The Animated Series was canceled when it had good ratings. As it turns out, it was due to a dispute between executive producer Avi Arad and network head Margaret Loesch. Despite the heat between them, contracts were involved and a new Spidey series titled Spider-Man Unlimited was released in 1999.
While it only aired for 13 episodes, this cosmic adventure on Counter-Earth was something different and fresh. Brian Drummond's Venom proved to be a fan-favorite character along with Michael Donovan's Carnage. The two villainous symbiotes tried to take over the planet and nearly succeeded.
8. Steven Weber
One of the best parts about Ultimate Spider-Man is it showed us the symbiote bonding to several hosts. For traditionalists who only see Venom as Eddie Brock, it might be bothersome, but for others, it fulfilled a few wishes of seeing several versions of the character.
On the show, Steven Weber provided the voice for Norman Osborn/Green Goblin, as well as the newly created villain Goblin-Venom. Weber is an accomplished actor who's known for roles as Brian Hackett on Wings and as Vaughn Du Clark on iZombie. Nonetheless, his performance in Ultimate Spider-Man deserves just as much credit as everything else he's done in his career.
7. Benjamin Diskin
Too many fans pine for the days of The Spectacular Spider-Man. It aired for two–pardon the pun–spectacular seasons before getting the can because of legal trouble between Disney and Sony Pictures Television. Loosely based on several iterations of the Web-Head's mythos, we saw a host of popular characters appear – including Eddie Brock.
After Hank Azaria's performance of Venom, it's safe to say that Benjamin Diskin's is the second-most recognized voice among fans. Since the series' cancelation, Diskin has gone on to voice Venom's nemesis, Spider-Man, in 2015's Lego Marvel Super Heroes: Avengers Reassembled.
Talk about the best of both worlds here!
6. Matt Lanter
When you mention the best Spider-Man cartoons, Ultimate Spider-Man should be in your top three. Yes, it tweaked a bit of the lore, but it did it in such a way that it made for intriguing and engaging storylines. One of the decisions made was to attach the symbiote to Peter Parker's best friend, Harry Osborn.
Osborn and Venom were both voiced by Matt Lanter. Apart from this role, Lanter is best known for his time as Liam Court in the teen drama 90210 and as the voice of Anakin Skywalker in Star Wars: The Clone Wars and Star Wars Rebels.
5. Dee Bradley Baker
Dee Bradly Baker is no stranger to superhero properties, having voiced various characters in Justice League, Teen Titans, and Batman: The Brave and the Bold. So, to see him chosen as the voice of Venom for the web series Lego Marvel Super Heroes: Maximum Overload shouldn't be a surprise to anyone.
Debuting online as five episodes in November 2013, the computer-animated feature is now available as a full-length film on several streaming platforms. It might not be on the same level as The Lego Movie or The Lego Batman Movie, but it's still fun and showcases the predictable Lego humor and sensibilities.
4. Danny Trejo
Danny Trejo has the type of gravelly voice that's right for any roguish character. In fact, you could actually imagine him being a live-action Eddie Brock in his youth. Well, Trejo got the chance to provide the pipes for the character in Phineas and Ferb: Mission Marvel.
The episode saw Phineas and Ferb encountering the likes of Spider-Man, Iron Man, Thor, Red Skull, and Venom in an epic crossover. Of course, it predominantly featured the wackiness and quirk that Phineas and Ferb have become renowned for. More importantly, Trejo delivered an exceptional performance as Venom. Did you honestly expect anything less from him?
3. Ryan Kwanten
You're probably asking, "Ryan Kwanten from True Blood?". Yes, indeed. That Ryan Kwanten. In 2013 Adi Shankar produced an unofficial fan film titled Venom: Truth in Journalism for his Bootleg Universe. Directed and written by Joe Lynch, the film is shot in a documentary style as a film crew follows Eddie Brock (Kwanten) around and captures his day-to-day life.
Of course, things go pear-shaped rather quickly and the symbiote takes over. Running at just over 17 minutes, it's the perfect merger of the Belgian mockumentary Man Bites Dog and Venom. Best part about it? You can watch it for free online.
2. Hank Azaria
Aside from the comics, one of the most memorable versions of Venom comes from Spider-Man: The Animated Series. Not only did it capture the sheer menace and danger of the character, but it also formulated his voice for a generation of fans. For this, we owe a debt of gratitude to Hank Azaria.
Azaria was no stranger to voice acting at the time, having worked on The Simpsons for years before he took the Spider-Man gig in 1994. It wouldn't be wrong of us to say that Azaria did for Venom what Mark Hamill did for the Joker in the animated world.
1. Tom Hardy
Despite the critical drubbing, Venom proved the haters wrong by raking in over $670 million worldwide. Part of the film's charm is undoubtedly Tom Hardy's extraordinary performance as both Eddie Brock and the symbiote. If you think about it, the very concept of Venom is quite silly and Hardy embraced the insanity of it all.
Part rom-com, part body horror, there's something majestically brilliant about Ruben Fleischer's movie. After all the money it has made, it's a given that there will be a sequel. Hopefully, we'll get to see more of Hardy in his element as the antihero symbiote.