“Raimi didn’t want Venom in the film”: Sam Raimi Only Introduced Venom in Tobey Maguire’s Worst Spider-Man Movie to Please the Studio

Sam Raimi finally explains why we got a terrible Venom in Spider-Man 3

"Raimi didn't want Venom in the film": Sam Raimi Only Introduced Venom in Tobey Maguire's Worst Spider-Man Movie to Please the Studio


  • Sam Raimi revealed that Venom was never his choice of villain for the third Spider-Man film with Tobey Maguire.
  • He revealed that he could never relate to Venom as a character in the Spider-Man comics and wanted another villain to take his place.
  • However, producer Avi Arad convinced him to make Venom the villain, saying that the character was the then-fan-favorite.
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Sam Raimi’s recent stint with the MCU, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, was a big let-down for the fans. Raimi rose to prominence by directing one of the most popular superhero movies of our time, the original Spider-Man trilogy starring Tobey Maguire. While his first two films are celebrated widely, the third Spider-Man film is often condemned as the worst film among the web-slinger’s films. The film’s failure could be attributed to the rushed inclusion of multiple villains.

Sam Raimi with Tobey Maguire and Kirsten Dunst on the sets of Spider-Man
Sam Raimi with Tobey Maguire and Kirsten Dunst on the sets of Spider-Man

Among the three villains was Topher Grace’s version of Venom, which was absolutely hated by the audience. Interestingly, Raimi had no interest in including Venom in his trilogy. The fan-favorite villain got his chance at redemption when Sony made the standalone Venom movie, with Tom Hardy portraying the character.

Sam Raimi Didn’t Want Venom In The Spider-Man Trilogy

Topher Grace as Venom in Spider-Man 3
Topher Grace as Venom in Spider-Man 3

Sam Raimi‘s Spider-Man 3 had a total of three main villains — Harry Osbourne’s Green Goblin, Sandman, and Venom. Fans were totally let down by the lack of character development, especially that of Topher Grace‘s Venom. According to Raimi, Venom was a villain he couldn’t relate to and didn’t want to include in the film. He has not even seen Tom Hardy‘s successful version of the anti-hero. But then he was forced to include Venom in the film by producer Avi Arad.


In an interview with Uproxx, Raimi shared that he found other Spider-Man characters like Peter Parker, Norman Osborn, and even J. Jonah Jameson is relatable but not Eddie Brock. He only read about the character when pressured to include him in Spider-Man 3. He revealed that the character lacked enough humanity to identify with him properly. Raimi told Uproxx:

“It was really more just that I didn’t understand the character that well. It wasn’t close to my heart. The best thing I like about Stan Lee and Steve Ditko’s Spider-Man is that they made relatable characters that I understand. Even if they were confused, like Norman Osborn, they still have goodness in their heart. They want them to do the right thing, or Peter Parker. Or even J. Jonah Jameson has goodness in his heart.”

The Evil Dead director continued:


“When I read about Venom, which I hadn’t read as a kid, I had to catch up on it when they wanted him to be in the movie. I didn’t recognize enough humanity within that character to be able to identify with him properly. That’s really what it boils down to.”

Unfortunately, Sam Raimi’s position with the character is reflected in the movie’s quality. When the premise of Tom Hardy’s Venom films was explained to him, the director admitted that it made much more sense and shared that he was glad that the new films were able to make a success out of the character.

Instead of Venom, Raimi’s choice of villain was Vulture, and he even planned to include the villain in a fourth Tobey Maguire film that never happened (via MTV). Raimi even had an actor in mind to play the character, John Malkovich.

Avi Arad Convinced Sam Raimi to Include Venom In The Film

Sam Raimi's Spider-Man with Tobey Maguire as the lead
Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man with Tobey Maguire as the lead

Interestingly, Avi Arad, the then-president of Marvel Studios, was the one who decided upon Venom’s inclusion. Arad explained to Sam Raimi that the director was a fan of the ’70s Spider-Man and made two films with his favorite villains. Arad now wanted Raimi to create a film with a villain that the new kids could relate to. According to Arad, the new generation of Marvel Comics fans were thinking about Venom as a villain. Raimi recalled his discussion with Arad during a 2007 interview with Collider:


“But when we were done [writing the script], Avi Arad, my partner and the former president of Marvel at the time, said to me, Sam, you’re so, you’re not paying attention to the fans enough. You need to think about them. You’ve made two movies now with your favorite villains, and now you’re about to make another one with your favorite villains. The fans love Venom,, heis the fan favorite. All Spider-Man readers love Venom, and even though you came from ’70s Spiderman, this is what the kids are thinking about. Please incorporate Venom, listen to the fans now.”

Sam Raimi budged, believing that he did not have enough understanding of the Marvel Universe like Arad. However, it turned out to be a disastrous decision. It appears that the director could have made a great third movie if he had been allowed to work with a villain of his choice.

All Spider-Man movies are now available for streaming on Disney+.


Written by Hashim Asraff

Articles Published: 1108

Hashim, Entertainment Writer. With over 1000 published articles on FandomWire, he covers a wide range of topics from celebrity life to comic book movies. He holds a Masters degree in Sociology and his expertise proves invaluable in handling sensitive news. His passion for crime investigation thrillers has turned him into a detective, exploring the darkest corners of the internet during his research.