Deadpool has been in development limbo for months even with a script and director in place. Fox is eager to put out a slew of new Marvel films including The Wolverine, X-Men: Days of Future Past and Fantastic Four it’s odd that Deadpool isn’t being fast-tracked. Last we heard, Fox was trying to figure out the best way to make the R-rated film with Mark Millar as the studio’s new creative consultant.
Tim Miller had been hired to direct after talks with Robert Rodriguez broke down. Miller last spoke about the project in October and seemed optimistic. However, Miller has since signed on to direct two big studio films Gravel and Seasons along with major involvement on the animated film The Goon. This gives the impression these other projects will likely force him to exit Deadpool.
“We’ve turned in an amazing script and done some early tests and visual development that — I’m confident — would get the fans stoked. And Ryan still loves the project. So it’s really up to Fox as to whether or not the film happens — all I can do is hope (and beg periodically) that it be allowed to move ahead.”
If Miller exits my bet would be on Joe Carnahan (The Grey, Narc) being contacted to direct. This is because of his connection to all parties involved. Joe worked with Ryan on Smokin’ Aces and is attached to direct Mark Millar’s Nemesis for Fox. He had been hired by the studio to put together a reboot of Daredevil which ultimately didn’t happen. It seemed the studio wasn’t confident in the material as the rights reverted back to Marvel. That doesn’t mean Joe wouldn’t be considered for future Marvel films. He had been talking with Fox about developing a Taskmaster film a while back. Besides Carnahan has Nemesis and a remake of Death Wish in development, neither have started pre-production.
ShowBlitz has interesting casting news today as Canadian actor Ryan Reynolds is now the frontrunner for the lead in the Highlander reboot. No official offer has been made but it’s looking good and Ryan doesn’t often turn down these type of roles. The assumption is that Ryan will play Colin, a Scottish highlander who discovers he’s an immortal while fatally wounded on the battlefield only to be resurrected. Under the guidance of an elder immortal he’s taught the rules and limits of his new powers. He chugs along for hundreds of years living through the highlights and downsides of history, until the president day story begins. The immortals are locked in a struggle to become the only one left alive. An immortal can only be killed by their head being cut-off. When the duel is over the winner absorbs the fallen immortal’s energy which in-turn increases their power/strength and immortality. Some immortals like Colin keep a close group of immortals as friends instead of hacking their heads off for power.
Juan Carlos Fresnadillo (28 Weeks Later) is set direct and replaced Justin Lin (Fast Five) who had to drop out of the project to focus on Fast Six. Iron Man scribes Art Marcum and Matt Holloway came on to do rewrites but the quality of the film won’t be known until we get a trailer. It’s an interesting choice considering Ryan’s massive Green Lantern flop and negative buzz surrounding his next comic book project R.I.P.D. However, he did have a number one hit with Safe House that co-starred Denzel Washington. Hopefully it light another fire under 20th Century Fox to finally get Deadpool made. It’s unknown at this point if this will be a complete reboot of the franchise or stay faithful to same beats of the original film. A villain hasn’t been named but it’s possible a new super-immortal could be introduced along with non-villainous immortals that Colin plays nice with.
I don’t often have a reason to make a video so I’ve held off to post any. However, when hearing that production on Tim Miller’s Deadpool starring Ryan Reynolds was heating up at 20th Century Fox I put together one highlighting the works of Miller and his VFX house Blur Studio. The company is mostly known for in game and trailer video game cinematics but have also worked on films like Avatar. While the prospect of an R-rated script from Zombieland screenwriters Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick should be enough. Miller’s extensive work bringing to life amazing action sequences is also a reason keep fans on their toes. Not to mention his familiarity with genre characters and previously working effects for the first two X-Men films. The games featured in the best of reel I put together include X-Men Origins: Wolverine, Terminator Salvation, Mass Effect 2, Arkham City, Resident Evil: Operation Racoon City and Star Wars: The Old Republic.
20th Century Fox has a lot on their plate with their comic book films. They currently have Daredevil, Fantastic Four and an X-Men First Class sequel in different development stages. David Slade (Hard Candy, 30 Days of Night) is set to direct the Daredevil reboot and Josh Trank in talks for Fantastic Four. Matthew Vaughn is still being pursued to return for First Class 2 but hasn’t signed on.
Two projects that have been delayed include the spin-off/reboot Deadpool and the Japanese saga The Wolverine. TheGeekFiles reports that a source from Fox confirms both films will go into production within the year. I assume they’re still aiming for a summer 2013 release date for The Wolverine and I expect a late summer/fall 2013 release for Deapool. He’s a rundown of the two movies and what’s happened since their original announcements.
The Wolverine is expected to more of a one-off than a sequel to the Origins film. Taking inspiration from the Japanese saga written by Frank Miller and Chris Claremont. Solid source material considering the mess the first film was. The terrible disaster that effected Japan pushed back the Wolverine’s original 2011 production date which was expected to shoot a good chunk of the movie there. Personal issues lead to the exit of director Darren Aronofsky (Black Swan, Requiem From A Dream) and James Mangold (Walk The Line, 3:10 To Yuma) stepped in. The film’s script written by Christopher McQuarrie (Usual Suspects) ended up getting rewrites from Mark Bomback (Total Recall, Die Hard 4, Jack The Giant Killer). Again the film’s expected Spring 2012 shoot was put into question when Hugh Jackman signed onto Tom Hooper’s Les Miserables which is about to start production. It was confirmed that we’ll be seeing characters like Silver Samurai, Viper, Yukio and The Hand.
Deadpool hasn’t had as many issues as The Wolverine but still did have some during it’s development. It’s script written by the duo Paul Wernick and Rhett Reese who brought us the successful zombie comedy Zombieland ended up leaking online, revealing it’s characters. Those included at the time of the leak Blind Al, Patch, Copycat, Ajax (villain) and X-Men member Colossus. While Fox seemed to freak out about the script being all over the web everyone who ended up reading it loved it. It will be interesting to see how many changes if any will end up in the final film.
Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez had been named as dream directors for the project. While Rodriguez took a look at the script and had talks with Fox he ended up making Spy Kids 4 instead. VFX expert Tim Miller ended up landing the directing job which seemed to confuse a lot of people unfamiliar with his work. He owns and works for VFX company Blur Studios making some of the best cinematic trailers for video games. Miller was involved in the effects departments for both X-Men and X2. It’s expected that Blur will end up doing the Deadpool’s effects. They’ve previously worked on films like Scott Pilgrim, Avatar and The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo.
Ryan Reynolds had been eager to play Deadpool for years and was cast as Wade Wilson in X-Men Origins:Wolverine. The film was a total mess angering Deadpool fans who felt the studio ruined the on screen character. Ryan went on the defensive and the studio looked to push for a spin-off in the meantime. Even if Reynolds had been clamoring his constant involvement in giving fans a faithful Deadpool film it was questionable if he was going to stick around. During Green Lantern’s production a trilogy had been brought up and it looked like Ryan could exiting Deadpool. Luckily for Fox, Green Lantern tanked and WB’s rushed sequel didn’t look like it was going to happen anytime soon. It’s been confirmed yet again that Ryan is still attached to the project and is just waiting for the production date.
Deadpool creator Rob Liefeld recently confirmed that the studio has shot around eight minutes of hard-R test footage which he’s been able to preview. It seems that pre-production is currently about to start and they’re just waiting for a greenlight from both Fox and producer Lauren Shuler Donner. Donner confirmed not too long ago she would be pushing the studio to go with the R rating.
There hasn’t been much development concerning Fox’s reboot of the character Wade Wilson better known as Deadpool. BleedingCool picked up creator Rob Liefelf stating he may have seen some R-rated test footage Fox could have shot. If this is indeed true it could mean that the studio could be finally figuring out when/how they will shoot. Fox seemed to have been mulling over what to do with the Merc-With-A-Mouth as the script written by the dynamic duo of Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick (Zombieland, G.I. Joe 2) is clearly for an R-rated movie. There seemed to be some hesitation to pursue that type of rating considering all five X-Men universe films have been PG-13 money makers. X-Men franchise producer Lauren Shulder Donner recently spoke on the subject and even sounded like she was championing decision to go with an R rating. If this does happen this will be Fox’s first R-rated Marvel film.
While rating isn’t everything these days since Christopher Nolan was able to give us a down and dirty Batman film with the Dark Knight even if it was PG-13. Some might say the censors turned a blind-eye to a few scenes. However, when it comes to Deadpool the mercenary character needs to live in a hostile environment which he contributes to with a massive body count. He’s also mentally unstable and unpredictable so explicit language is necessity. Here’s hoping Fox comes to their senses and moves forward with this film soon. At one point it looked like Ryan Reynolds was going to walk from the project. Luckily, Green Lantern bombed and it doesn’t look like that sequel will sweep him away.
“They’ve got a great director on the movie, they’ve got a great script. I may or may have not seen some sort of test of footage that would blow your mind if you saw it and go holy crap and that’s Deadpool in costume. Katana swords, guns, shooting people’s faces off and making me laugh. And I may or may not have seen something that looks just like that. And you’ve got what would amount to the first R Rated X-Men movie. Because that script is R Rated.
They may or may not have wanted to shoot eight minutes to see how it would play. And all I can tell you, it’s close. It’s closer that it’s even been to going, or going Naaah, that’s too scary a proposition to make a R Rated Deadpool movie.”
If Kevin Feige is the face of Marvel Studios then producer Lauren Shuler Donner is the face of Fox’s X-Men franchise. Lauren is responsible for producing X-Men 1-3, X-Men Origins and First Class. I have to commend her on finally giving us a solid X-Men film (First Class) after such a long wait since X2. Fox and Lauren finally took the material somewhat seriously and delivered a solid film rather than a cash-in mutant cameo orgy. She’s been making the rounds talking up future projects which includes Deadpool, The Wolverine and a sequel to X-Men First Class.
“If we make the movie it needs to be a rated R film. Otherwise you can’t make it. As for Tim, most of the advertisements for the games you play, everybody plays, he does those. He’s just…it would give it a very different look, a very different feel, which would be totally appropriate for Deadpool. Again, I don’t want people to feel like they’ve seen these movies before. Every movie has to have its own identity, and he will bring a whole different visual style to it. Very different visual style. And he’s funny! He fits right into that world. He fits right in. He’s perfect.”
“We have a few more things to do. And then it’s up to the studio to decide whether we’re going to go forward or not… But I’m pretty excited. We have a good script and a good director [Tim Miller]…..Yes he was treated totally wrong in the Wolverine film and yes we will redeem him.”
She also talked to CinemaBlend and HitFix about director James Mangold who recently landed the gig for The Wolverine. The film has been rumored to have been pushed back to a Spring/Summer 2012 shoot to work around Hugh Jackman’s other films.
“I really liked Walk The Line and I really liked Girl Interrupted and I really liked 3:10 To Yuma. For me there’s three things that I look for. One thing is performance, because really it’s all about characters, even in action movies. Two is a look, you know, visual, because we have to have a style. Three is the ability to handle action and certainly with 3:10 To Yuma you could see that and he’s very experienced. I think we lucked out.”
“[We want] to distinguish it from the other one… It’s much more of a standalone [movie]… I’m not sure when we’ll start. Maybe summer 2012 we’ll start shooting. It’s based on Hugh’s schedule, frankly. When he’s available, we’ll film. …He’s doing ‘Les Miserables’, and then he has to come and train for us. So it’s all dependent on him.”
“Well, if we were going to sequelize this and keep on going, we would stay in the next [time] period. Probably we’d go to the 70’s.”
[on Cyclops and Jean for First Class 2]…“Maybe. Let’s just say, I hope so.”
“Yes. I mean that movie was a very strenuous movie so Matthew and everybody took some time off. Now we’re back and regrouping and kicking around some ideas. I think we just need to come up with a really good story and see where that leads us. If we could, great, if not, I think the story itself is what is most important.”