It may seem like an unsurprising announcement to say that actor Ryan Reynolds (The Croods, R.I.P.D.) is set to star in Deadpool, since the actor has been attached from the very start, before second-guessing on the part of Fox put the project into development limbo. But while the Deadpool movie may be officially set for 2016, Reynolds’ return to the role he first played in X-Men Origins: Wolverine has only been rumored.
Given that a large part of the overwhelmingly positive reception to the leaked Deadpool concept footage was due to Reynolds performance, providing motion capture and voice to the fully-CG action sequence. At the time of the leak, Reynolds claimed the fan reaction convinced him that he and director Tim Miller were on the right track, but without a contract in place, it was only wishful thinking linking him to the newly-greenlit film.
That is, until now. With TheWrap reporting that Reynolds has entered final negotiations to play the masked mercenary Wade Wilson a.k.a. Deadpool, it seems oddly fitting that Reynold should take to Twitter to tease his return – in a fashion that fans of the character will appreciate:
By Tweeting an image of the character’s iconic cowl (the work of Mike Oncley), Reynolds seems to imply that the ‘final talks’ are even more final than some may think, essentially confirming that his casting is just a matter of time. His involvement was never really in doubt, since the actor’s humor, action experience – and physique – made his attachment to the project in its early stages a no-brainer.
As “Deadpool” co-creator Rob Liefeld put it: “Ryan is Deadpool” (also implying that the very existence of the film is due to Reynolds’ interest in starring). But no matter how surprising his casting may or may not seem, fans can breathe easy knowing that the leaked test footage really is what they can expect from the finished movie.
Of course, some larger questions remain. With it now safe to assume that Reynolds will be the one bringing Deadpool into the X-Men movie universe, the short and long term plans are something of a mystery. The solo movie is expected to introduce the hero as comic fans know him (not the odd re-imagining seen in X-Men Origins), with Rob Liefeld convinced that the “brilliant” script will do the character justice. But from there… what’s next?
We’ve speculated for some time that if a time-bending shared universe is what Fox is after with their upcoming slate of X-Men projects, then the arrival of Cable or a full-blown X-Force spinoff series seems inevitable. But all things considered, we would hope that director Tim Miller, Ryan Reynolds and Fox simply focus on doing Deadpool right, and going from there.
Are you relieved to see the writers, director, and actor bringing Deadpool to life now finally locked into place? Or do the rumors of a PG-13 rating dampen your enthusiasm? Sound off in the comments.
Deadpool is set to release on February 12, 2016.
Follow me on Twitter @andrew_dyce for Deadpool updates as well as movie, TV and gaming news.