One of the biggest Hollywood success stories of the past few years was Deadpool, the R-rated superhero movie from 20th Century Fox. From dead in the water to surprise box office smash, Deadpool became a perfect parable for young filmmakers who have a story to tell and won’t let failure stand in the way of getting their movie made. Unfortunately, though, life doesn’t always adhere to clean narratives. Despite all the setbacks that Deadpool director Tim Miller faced along the way, it turns out there was only one thing that could cause him to throw in the towel: success.

Earlier today, Deadline broke the news that Miller will be leaving Deadpool 2 as a result of creative differences with star Ryan Reynolds. Deadline notes that Miller had not formally signed on to direct the next film but had been working on the script and was expected by all involved to return. Apparently, Miller and 20th Century Fox are still on very good terms; it is expected that Miller will jump into a trilogy of science-fiction films based on the David Suarez novel Influx.

What to make of all of this? After years of production hell on the original Deadpool film, you’d think that Miller and Reynolds were past the point where behind-the-scenes tension could cause their working relationship to fizzle. It’s a shame that the two men were not able to come to an agreement about the course of the franchise; this is supposed to be the easy part, when you’ve already proven yourself and can think bigger and bolder than you ever did before. That being said, if Miller and Reynolds are indeed at an impasse, the studio was always going to side with Ryan Reynolds in the dispute. Not only is Reynolds the star of a successful superhero franchise, he’s also made the character of Deadpool an extension of his persona in a way that few actors do. You might have a worse Deadpool 2 without Miller, but you have no Deadpool 2 without its star.

No word yet on whether this will affect the estimated release date of January 12, 2018, but fingers crossed that Deadpool 2 is able to stick to its schedule despite this major setback. Here’s hoping Miller and Reynolds now get a chance to make movies their way.

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