In a trailer breakdown video from Venom: Let There Be Carnage director Andy Serkis posted by IGN, the filmmaker confirmed that the film takes place in it’s own world and that Stephen Graham plays an a police offer named Mulligan, who is most likely Patrick Mulligan the host of the symbiote known as Toxin.
SERKIS: “Obviously, there are links between Venom and Spider-Man in the Marvel Universe and the Spider-Man story, but in this, we’re treating this very much as it’s his own world, the Venom story is his own world. There are nods and little moments just like this, the newspaper Daily Bugle, of course, but on the whole, he’s unaware, they’re unaware, at this point of other characters like Spider-Man. So that’s the way we’ve chosen to play this particular episode of the movie but well, we’ll wait and see, what little things you can pick out of it.”
There is a strong possibility that Stephen Graham’s Mulligan could become Toxin leading to a new villain for Venom 3, the Netflix/Sony deal recently inadvertently confirmed plans for a third movie. However, Sony Pictures has yet to officially announce they have a script or even a director for it.
Stephen Graham is notorious for play gritty characters with credits such as Snatch, Boardwalk Empire, and The Irishman. It doesn’t hurt he co-starred with Tom Hardy on his series Taboo, which likely means working together on multiple films could be fun for the two friends.
I’m still curious if they’ll attempt to combine Naomie Harris’ Shriek with the symbiote Scream given the slight overlap or have someone else as the human host. The comic storyline Separation Anxiety would make for a good final movie.