A ‘Deadpool’ Screenwriter Explains Their Anti-Disney Success Story
Few superhero movies captured the imagination of audiences last year quite like Deadpool. While Marvel releases were praised for their sleek storytelling and progressive characters, Deadpool went the other route, earning hundreds of millions of dollars on the strength of its raunchy sex scenes and immature sight gags. It was choppy, it was unpolished, and, occasionally, it was noticeably cheap around the edges. In other words, it was everything that Marvel movies are not.
Because of this, Deadpool exudes a goofy sincerity that audiences responded to, a willingness to swing and miss that other studio films so sorely lack. In a recent interview with Variety (via Heroic Hollywood), Deadpool co-writer Rhett Reese explained why it was actually the success of Disney’s house style that opened the door for Deadpool to get made. According to Reese, their team was able to pitch Fox on a superhero film that “Marvel and Disney can’t do,” framing the mature content of their movie as the adult counterpart to the Iron Man and Captain America movies of the world. And, as the saying goes, the rest was history. As Reese notes, “It really feels like an apple among oranges with big studio movies. I think that contributed to its success.”
The success of Deadpool has certainly opened the door for superhero movies to take a few more risks, with next month’s Logan promising a much darker movie than previous entries in the X-Men universe. Some have worried that studio executives would take the wrong lesson from Deadpool and cram their films with profanity and graphic violence only for the sake of profanity and violence; while plenty of us probably toyed with the idea of getting a Boondock Saints poster for our dorm rooms, these days, we’re smart enough to know that breaking rules just to break rules doesn’t make for a very good movie. Fingers crossed that Hollywood learns the right lessons from the Deadpool success.
With the Deadpool writing team hard at work on the sequel, be sure to stay tuned for an onslaught of meta-jokes and so-wrong-its-right casting rumors for the supporting cast.