Marvel/Sony Haven't Figured Out How to Do J. Jonah Jameson
J. Jonah Jameson hasn't appeared in a movie since Spider-Man 3 over a decade ago. Since 2002, three actors have played Peter Parker/Spider-Man, two actresses have played Gwen Stacy, there have been two Harry Osborns, two Norman Osborns, three Aunt Mays, two Uncle Bens, three Flash Thompsons, two Eddie Brock/Venoms, two Dr. Curt Conners, and Mary Jane Watson was supposed to be played by Shailene Woodley in The Amazing Spider-Man 2 until her scene was cut. And yet, J.K. Simmons' iconic portrayal of J. Jonah Jameson prevails as the only live-action version fans have seen.
Mr. Jameson didn't appear in either of the Amazing Spider-Man films starring Andrew Garfield, although he was referenced in an email. Garfield's Peter not working for the Daily Bugle was one of the few things Marc Webb didn't retread from Sam Raimi's trilogy. But besides how the character was possibly being saved for Sony's scrapped The Amazing Spider-Man 3 or Sinister Six, was no J. Jonah Jameson in those films also because Sony didn't quite know how to follow up J.K. Simmons' incredibly popular version?
Meanwhile, though fans have been casting everyone from Kevin Bacon to Gary Oldman to even J.B. Smoove as the Daily Bugle's mustachioed top banana, the MCU doesn't seem to be in any rush to fill the role either. This is, again, simply because Jonah and the Bugle simply aren't necessary (yet) in the MCU's Spider-Man films, but the longer this continues, it only further cements J.K. Simmons' JJJ as the definitive live-action version. Even though Simmons himself has moved on to play Commissioner Gordon in the DCEU, fans still know the Oscar-winning actor best as J. Jonah Jameson.
JJJ Will Make Or Break Venom In The MCU
Unless he appears or is referenced in Spider-Man: Far From Home and therefore is finally established in the MCU, J. Jonah Jameson's movie future could depend on what Sony chooses to do with the character. Since he's so closely linked to Spider-Man, Jameson probably won't reappear in a movie unless he get to torment Peter Parker and his wall-crawling alter ego. However, Sony had plans for Jonah to crossover into its other spinoffs. Along with Harry Osborn, there were rumors that Jameson factors in Silver & Black due to his comic book ties to the Scorpion, one of that film's possible villains. Silver & Black has since been split into two movies - one about Silver Sable and one about Black Cat - so either could introduce Jameson. The rumored Kraven the Hunter film could also pull the trigger on JJJ, especially if Spider-Man is Kraven's target. Overall, both Sony and Marvel Studios are spinning their wheels on Jameson and the Bugle until the right opportunity comes along to finally re-introduce both.
So where does all of this leave Venom and his chances of joining the MCU? It all potentially depends on how many dominoes fall into place for J. Jonah Jameson appearing in the MCU, because if he does, then he'll likely be the only one, just as Tom Holland's Spidey is the only live-action one currently active. This then bodes well for Venom in the MCU, since Jameson is Eddie Brock's strongest tie to his unseen past life and career in NYC and there probably won't be another JJJ cast in Sony's universe, to avoid fan confusion. It's also certainly helpful that Venom is a record-breaking hit and that Venom 2 is a certainty - the potential for Venom one day meeting Tom Holland's Spider-Man only gets stronger with the symbiote becoming a huge movie star in his own right.
The most important thing for fans is that the door is being kept open for every possibility by both Marvel and Sony. While Venom will continue wreaking havoc in San Francisco, Venom wisely planted the seed through John and J. Jonah Jameson that Eddie Brock and his best symbiote pal might have still have a future in the MCU.
- Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (2018) release date: Dec 14, 2018
- Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) release date: Jul 02, 2019