The turnaround of Deadpool on the big screen is unprecedented for a comic book character. In 2009, 20th Century Fox first shoehorned the character into the largely disastrous “X-Men Origins: Wolverine” and did something that was mind-boggling to fans of the the Merc With A Mouth: they sewed his mouth shut. Fast-forward seven years to the release of the R-rated “Deadpool,” the big-screen take the character deserves, in what has wound up being a record breaking smash hit, and one of the most successful X-Men movies ever. But how does Gavin Hood feel about it all?
The director behind ‘Origins’ recently chatted with Cinema Blend and praises Tim Miller‘s film, the R-rated approach, and the wise decision by executives to stay out of the creative process.
“I think the character works so well now, because the character is allowed to be who the character really is, unencumbered by, you know, PG-13 requirements and a great deal of marketing debate. I think the fact that the filmmakers kind of made that film below the radar — and I happen to know a little bit, only because my production designer from ‘Ender’s Game,’ Sean Haworth, is a fantastic designer, was the designer on ‘Deadpool,’ ” he said. “I remember when he was making the film, it was just a little bit more below the radar initially. And more credit to the filmmakers and to Ryan [Reynolds], that they took control of their character and got on and let Ryan do the film. Deadpool is a motor mouth, foul mouth character, and it’s very difficult with these big movies to, when you have to work within certain parameters that are set by [studio heads].”
Moreover, he blames 20th Century Fox for cramming Deadpool into ‘Origins’ without much thought.
“You know, when he did the little cameo bit in ‘X-Men Origins: Wolverine,’ it was exactly what we’ve been talking about. It was the studio attempting to plug in a few characters and test the waters. But now [Reynolds] gets to make his own movie and he did it with great courage and with the full force of his personality, so he deserves every success. I think he’s done really well, and I think it’s fantastic that they had the courage to just go ahead and make the film. They had to make it R rated, but can you imagine if they were trying for PG-13? I just don’t think it would have worked,” Hood added.
And you can’t really argue with any of that. The reason “Deadpool” worked is that everyone involved was allowed stay true to the character as much as possible, with Fox having faith enough that something different from the superhero mold would succeed.
Hood’s latest film, “Eye In The Sky,” is now playing.