The Hollywood Reporter sat down with DEADPOOL 2 writers Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick about their plans for the sequel, including shaping the tone of future projects in the ever-expanding X-Men film franchise.
In terms of where “the merc” fits within the universe and continuity, Wernick says that (in a way) he “exists in his own universe,” saying “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.”
Discussing the idea of doing more standalone films instead of connecting everything to a larger story for future films, Reese says “I think sometimes the movies get a little overstuffed trying to set up future movies and it almost feels burdensome or obligatory, where you are weaving in four or five different plots that really aren’t in service of the current movie, but are to set up audience anticipation or logic for what’s coming. We really are trying our best to avoid that. There is something to the movie that is just worried about itself for the moment.
The different universes tend to have different tones, and the Marvel Cinematic Universe has a very specific, genius tone that was set in Iron Man and has lived well beyond that into the other movies. DC tends to have its own tone, which is this dark, gritty tone. The X-Men have their own tone, which is kind of somewhere in between. Not too funny, not too light. But not quite as dark as the DC stuff. And I think what we stumbled into was a new tone, and I haven’t seen Logan, so it’s tough to say if they have it, but I think we hope to have our own universe that is defined less by characters and timelines and things like that and more by tone. The hope is Deadpool 2 and X-Force and future movies all be this new, consistent, sillier tone. More self-aware tone. And edgier and rated-R tone. We want to be establishing the universe but also focusing on each individual movie and not worrying too much about building a larger threat to the world or a larger plot machination.”
Working on the sequel, Reese and Wernick feel that they have as much creative control as with the first film, which was plenty.
“The studio has been wonderful, says Wernick. “From the moment they greenlit this movie, through release and now into the sequel. They’ve let the inmates run the asylum and so this movie won’t take six years to make. That will be a blessing, not a curse for us.”
Reese agrees, saying “We haven’t had the leash taken off this time, because the leash was never on the first time. The studio didn’t ask us or force us to take out a single joke in that first movie. They never questioned anything we did. And that has remained the case. I don’t think we feel necessarily any more free than we did, because we were already free.”
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