“McAvoy or Stewart? These timelines can get so confusing.” Ryan Reynolds’ title character delivered that line at one point when told he’d be coming face-to-face with Professor X in Deadpool.
It’s the kind of offhanded remark that not only befits the quip-happy anti-hero, but also acknowledges the convoluted continuity of Fox’s X-Men franchise. As it turns out, that line of dialogue was actually more telling than fans may have realized.
Screenwriters Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick – part of the original creative team returning for the upcoming Deadpool 2 – recently discussed the sequel with The Hollywood Reporter, and Wernick revealed Deadpool’s film series is being envisioned as separate from the core X-Men franchise.
“What’s nice is Deadpool exists in his own universe. He’s part of the larger X-Men universe, but in a way he isn’t. He interacts with that world, but he is in the present. We don’t deal with the ’60s or the ’70s or the future. It’s here and now.
“More than anything, I think he’s going to have his fun with what they do in the other franchise. But fortunately, we don’t have to play by those same rules. Deadpool is a movie that did break all the rules. And I think we’re going to continue to break those rules. That involves knowing that he’s in a movie, talking to the audience, breaking that fourth wall, a characteristic that they established so brilliantly in the comics way back when.
“So yeah, I do think that timelines are something that we can make fun of and don’t have to be slave to.”
That very specific tone is largely considered one of the biggest reasons why Deadpool was such a massive hit last year. Especially in his origin story, the character’s ability to lob verbal jabs at the very nature of superhero films – a genre that seems to be everywhere these days – brought a refreshing new dimension to his first solo outing, according to many fans and critics.
Thankfully, Deadpool 2 is expected to take a similarly direct approach to superhero sequels.
Since Reese discussed how too many movies nowadays “get a little overstuffed trying to set up future movies” to the point that “it almost feels burdensome or obligatory,” fans should certainly expect Deadpool to tear into the shared universe model when he returns to theaters under the watchful eye of John Wick filmmaker David Leitch in 2018.
Robert Yaniz Jr.
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