1. First photo from Venom bodes well for lens flare fans

We finally have a photo from Tom Hardy’s upcoming inhabitation of the infamous Marvel villain, Venom. Of course, it’s just a candid photo from the set but it shows that the whole thing is actually happening. And that Topher Grace is nowhere in sight. As if that wasn’t enough Venom news (and it isn’t really), Andy Serkis has provided a little more. According to Serkis, Hardy’s performance as Venom could well be done using performance capture technology. Serkis, who runs mo-cap studio The Imaginarium, let slip the news that “Hardy is playing a new character using performance capture” when speaking to Yahoo Movies this week. Neither producers Sony nor director Ruben Fleischer have confirmed the move.

2. Ben Mendelsohn gets all villainous for Captain Marvel

We were already interested in Captain Marvel. It’s got Brie Larson in it and the script bears the fingerprints of Inside Out co-writer Meg LeFauve. Plus, Brie Larson stars and Nicole Perlman, co-writer of Guardians of the Galaxy, wrote a draft. Also, Brie Larson plays Captain Marvel.

We now have something else to add to this comprehensive and varied list. According to Variety, Ben Mendelsohn may be joining the project as – what else? – the primary antagonist. Mendelsohn is no stranger to franchise villains, having played one in both The Dark Knight Returns and Rogue One, so it checks out. If Mendelsohn signs on, he’d likely join as the leader of the Skrulls – a race of extraterrestrial shapeshifters bent on evildodoings. Definitely checks out.

3. Daniel Day-Lewis is bowing out in style

With most actors, when asked why they were attracted to a film, their answer usually credits the script. Occasionally it will be the chance to work with a certain director. Every now and again it will be because it buys them a very nice house. With Daniel Day-Lewis’s latest film, Phantom Thread, you expect the answer would be more to do with the fact that it allowed him to take up a hobby

Phantom Thread sees famed dressmaker Reynolds Woodcock’s (DDL) life unravel when he meets, and falls for, Alma (Vicky Krieps). Love, lust, lace – this has all the Ls going for it. However, director Paul Thomas Anderson will be hoping that it registers as a big W when it’s released in the UK on February 2, 2018. We expect Daniel Day-Lewis won’t be too bothered either way.

4. Avatar claims its first victim

Zoe Saldana has stepped down from action-thriller Hummingbird, a casualty of involvement in a franchise that is shooting four films back-to-back. This is truly an unforeseeable side effect of that particular plan. The film has been written by John McClain (note: this is not the John McClane that saved dozens in 1988’s Nakatomi tower siege – that’s a different John McClane) and has fluttered around Hollywood for a while, earning itself a place on the Black List. Marcus Kryler and Fredrik Akerström will direct.

Stepping into Saldana’s shoes will be Olivia Munn. Deadline reports that The Predator and X-Men: Apocalypse actor has signed onto the project, which is set to start filming next year. The film sees a female black-ops agent forced to confront her true self when she is assigned her latest target. Note: this is not the Hummingbird which sees a special forces veteran (Jason Statham) forced to confront his true self when he assumes another man’s identity. That’s a different Hummingbird.

5.  Liam Neeson is strange on a train

Liam Neeson may have spoken about his desire to one day step down from this whole action movie malarkey (before promptly reversing that decision), but the first trailer for The Commuter makes it clear there are a few stops to pass through yet. Having successfully enjoyed hijinks on a plane, a battleship and in a falling tank, it’s now the turn of the locomotive. In The Commuter, Neeson is an insurance salesman who needs to uncover a passenger’s identity. It’s kind of like Source Code without the Jake Gyllenhaal in a box thing. Even Vera Farmiga shows up! Like Source Code – and this may be down to trailer editing – The Commuter looks genuinely strange. We’ll find out just how strange on January 19.

6. Renee Zellweger to play Judy Garland

Ensuring that Film Stars Don’t Die In Liverpool doesn’t have a monopoly on the “Hollywood star’s final days” genre, Renee Zellweger has signed onto take the titular role in Pathé and Calamity Films’ Judy. Set in 1968, the film begins at the start of a five-week run of concert performances that Garland had signed up to to pay the bills. Most notably, that year was just one away from the star’s death. Chances are this won’t be a happy film. Rupert Goold, the Tony-nominated director of numerous stage productions will helm the project written by The Crown’s Tom Edge. Zellweger hasn’t starred in a musical since she was nominated for the Best Actress Academy Award for Chicago. 15 years on, we’re eager to see if she can recapture the magic. [via Variety]