Out of all Disney properties, the one that seems to have the most conflict lately is Deadpool. Despite Deadpool films releasing under the 20th Century Fox banner, Disney now officially owns the character thanks to owning Fox and Deadpool being from Marvel’s character arsenal.
As all fans of the Deadpool franchise already know, the movies also set a precedent for a hard R-rating. While comedies, the blend of intense violence and profanity set a certain bar for the films not everyone agrees should be maintained.
At the heart of where Deadpool goes next is Disney itself and how they feel about maintaining the character as he currently is. Consensus indicates Disney will still use Deadpool in some capacity.
Is Disney against Deadpool’s R-rated appeal?
The continuing argument that comes up with Disney is they are still against R-rated films in their mainstream wheelhouse and try to maintain at least a PG-13 average. It may be easy to assume this considering every MCU movie to date is PG-13, so far.
Over on Reddit, this argument recently turned into a tug-of-war on whether Disney would really back off on an R-rated movie. Said one user: “Idk where this idea Disney is completely against R rated movies comes from. They’ve always released R rated things, they just don’t do it under the official Disney family friendly brand and instead use other studios.”
Much of this stems from the initial Reddit thread reporting on Ryan Reynolds saying Deadpool 3 seems dead in the water at the moment. Others noted this relates more directly to COVID-19 rather than Disney wanting to get rid of the character.
Nevertheless, discussions about whether Disney would want to tone down Deadpool are still worth analyzing.
Disney does know ‘Deadpool’ would make them a lot of money
Go back and look at the box office figures for Deadpool and Deadpool 2 and one can surmise that Disney would never discard the potentials there. Besides, everyone should remember that Deadpool 2 had a PG-13 re-release (Once Upon a Deadpool) in 2018 and ended up making even more money.
This was proof the Deadpool franchise could work in a PG-13 format if necessary. Regardless, most fans seem to want the movies to stick with how they were from the beginning.
Other fans also grow frustrated at those who keep insisting Disney will end up ruining Deadpool when evidence seems to indicate otherwise. For example, Bob Iger said back in 2019 the Mouse House intends to keep the Deadpool movies rated R since he understands the concept of never tweaking what already works.
As Iger told Variety, though, the films would have “carefully branding [R-rated films]…so we’re not in any way confusing the consumer.”
What about the rumored Deadpool join-in with the MCU?
A lot of speculation still exists whether Disney will allow Deadpool to join the MCU at some point. Doing this might be easier said than done considering there has to be some logic to having Deadpool suddenly showing up.
He certainly does have strong connections to a few Avengers if going by the comic books. A story involving Deadpool and Spider-Man alone is worth thinking about, if perhaps a cinematic pipe dream in the Tom Holland era.
Keeping Deadpool in his own universe may be the best thing after all, even if a new movie may be a while before it becomes a reality. Disney definitely knows an audience exists for R-ratings ever since they started doing the same under their old Touchstone Pictures and Miramax Pictures subsidiaries.
Ever since acquiring Fox, they seem open again to doing more R-rated movies as a distributor (see last year’s Stuber), proving more Deadpool is likely on a future slate when safe to do so.