Ryan Reynolds spent the best part of a decade trying to bring a Deadpool solo movie to the big screen, sticking with the Merc with a Mouth following the character’s botched cinematic debut in X-Men Origins: Wolverine. It turned out to be a wise decision, too, with the first installment becoming a critical and commercial smash hit, with the two entries in the franchise so far earning over $1.5 billion at the box office.
Terminator: Dark Fate director Tim Miller made his feature debut on Deadpool, but declined to return for the sequel due to creative differences before being replaced with John Wick creator David Leitch. And in a recent interview reflecting on the disappointment of Dark Fate, Miller revealed that one of the main reasons he refused to helm Deadpool 2 was Reynolds’ desire to steer the ship and control the direction of the franchise.
“It became clear that Ryan wanted to be in control of the franchise. You can work that way as a director, quite successfully, but I can’t.”
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Credit should go to Miller for sticking to his guns and believing that the director should be the driving force behind any movie, which is something of a rarity in today’s studio-mandated blockbuster environment. However, as a bankable star and producer on Deadpool, Reynolds held a lot of sway over the project, especially given the fact that he was the one that lobbied so hard to get it made in the first place.
It seems unlikely that Reynolds will be the point man on the series for much longer though now that Deadpool is officially going to be part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe going forward. Everybody knows that Kevin Feige is the person with the final say on all MCU-related offerings, and the two will need to figure out a balance between Wade Wilson’s R-rated, fourth wall-breaking antics and the family-friendly comic book movies that Marvel Studios have built their empire on.