Tom Hardy based his 'Venom' performance on 3 unlikely people, including Woody Allen — and he didn't tell Sony

Sony Pictures
  • Actor Tom Hardy told Esquire that he based his “Venom” performance on writer and director Woody Allen, UFC fighter Conor McGregor, and rapper Redman.
  • Hardy said he didn’t tell the studio, Sony, about his inspirations: “You don’t say s— like that to the studio.”
  • He said he was inspired by Allen’s “tortured neurosis and all the humour that can come from that.”

Tom Hardy found unusual inspiration in three completely different people for his performance in “Venom,” which hits theatres later this year: controversial writer and director Woody Allen, UFC fighter Conor McGregor, and the rapper Redman.

Hardy plays troubled reporter Eddie Brock in the movie, who becomes the anti-hero Venom after an alien symbiote latches on to him. The character is a classic Spider-Man villain who the studio, Sony, is giving the solo treatment. Hardy revealed to Esquire in a profile published Tuesday that he based his performance on those three, which he said he never told Sony about.

“You don’t say s— like that to the studio,” Hardy said.

Esquire described Hardy’s acting process as “using personalities, both real and fictive, as lodestars toward which he guides his portrayal.” For “Venom,” Hardy plays a character with colliding personalities, which turned him toward three unlikely figures to guide him.

In Allen, who has been accused by his adopted daughter of sexual assault,Hardy said he was inspired by his “tortured neurosis and all the humour that can come from that”; in McGregor, the “überviolence but not all the talking”; and he described Redman as “out of control, living rent-free in his head.”

You can watch the full “Venom” trailer below for a peak at Hardy’s performance. “Venom” comes to theatres October 5.

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