Deadpool was one of 20th Century Fox’s most profitable characters when the studio was bought by Disney, raking in over $1.5 billion with only two films. But unlike X-Men or Fantastic Four, Deadpool’s R-rated humor and violence make him a harder character to integrate with the rest of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. But a new rumor suggests that Disney might maintain the darker tone with solo Deadpool films, but make him less essential than other characters in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
In a rumor from Geekosity, writer Mikey Sutton hints at how Disney might handle Deadpool:
“Although Deadpool’s next films are going to take place in the MCU, they won’t be pushing an overall story arc forward like the Avengers movies, for example, led to Infinity War and Endgame. Kids won’t need to see them on the road to Secret Wars or whatever event films, especially related to the X-Men appear before it.”
By doing this, Deadpool’s films would essentially be optional additions to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, so that kids wouldn’t have to sit through a rated-R adventure to understand the larger universe as a whole. Theoretically, it sounds like Deadpool would still appear in larger Avengers or X-Men films, but probably more toned down than we’ve seen the character in the past.
While this may sound somewhat disappointing, this is the function Deadpool films have always taken. Even though Deadpool interacts with the X-Men, and even spends a significant amount of time at the Xavier’s School for Gifted Youngsters, knowing the events of Deadpool and Deadpool 2 had no importance in understanding the latest string of X-Men films. In a way, Deadpool has almost been like a commentary track to the larger world around him: it’s a decent addition that adds to the original experience, but it’s by no means essential to understanding the larger story.
Back in 2017, CEO of Disney Bob Iger said that Deadpool could still exist in the same way audiences have known the character, stating, “It [Deadpool] clearly has been and will be Marvel branded. But we think there might be an opportunity for a Marvel-R brand for something like Deadpool.” Iger continued, “As long as we let the audiences know what’s coming, we think we can manage that fine.”
Deadpool co-writer Rhett Reese has echoed what Iger stated, saying that there will eventually be more Deadpool, but the real problem with going forward is trying to figure out how to balance that R-rated universe with the Marvel Cinematic Universe world at large.
While Deadpool 3’s status has been in question for some time now, it seems as though Ryan Reynolds would return to the role, if the character is integrated into the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Disney’s hinted plans for franchises like X-Men and Fantastic Four makes it sound like the characters would receive a complete overhaul with new actors, but Reynolds would be the only actor reprising the character he played under the 20th Century Fox banner.
Yet this next stage for the Marvel Cinematic Universe seems far more open to exploring the past of these characters, even digging into previous incarnations, which could be a way to integrate Deadpool into this world. Spider-Man 3 has already announced that Jamie Foxx will be reprising his role as Electro from The Amazing Spider-Man 2, and J. Jonah Jameson’s appearance at the end of 2019’s Spider-Man: Far From Home was an early hint that we might see more of these character’s pasts represented in the future.
With Benedict Cumberbatch’s addition to Spiderman-3 and Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness rumors greatly hinting that the Marvel Cinematic Universe will soon be full of various iterations of characters we already know, it’s possible one of these upcoming films could be a way for Deadpool to integrate himself into this universe. But whenever we do finally get Deadpool in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, it’ll be fascinating to see how these 20th Century Fox characters play with Disney’s established world.