Why Ryan Reynolds’ Deadpool Will Be the First X-Men Character to Enter the MCU

As soon as Disney acquired Fox, fans were desperate to know how this would affect the Marvel Cinematic Universe. After all, Fox had owned movie rights to Marvel properties like the X-Men, Deadpool, and the Fantastic Four.

While we still don’t know what the MCU’s plan is, everyone assumes Ryan Reynolds’ Deadpool will survive the transition. Here’s why the Merc with the Mouth will probably be the first X-Men character to enter the MCU.

Ryan Reynolds
Ryan Reynolds | Getty Images

Deadpool’s introduction doesn’t have to make sense plot-wise

The biggest and most obvious reason Deadpool’s MCU debut is right around the corner is plot-related. More specifically, the character requires zero plot explanation for his sudden appearance in the MCU. Because Deadpool is self-aware, he can comment directly on his new environment, an advantage no other X-Men character has.

Sure, there is the question of how the MCU will continue the very R-rated Deadpool movie franchise. But it’s safe to say he will be censored when he pops up in team-up movies. Luckily, this too can be brushed off with a line of dialogue in which a frustrated Deadpool attempts to use profanity, only to be bleeped out.

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Ryan Reynolds’ persona is so inextricably tied to the character

With most of the other X-Men, the MCU will face an uphill battle trying to recast. Hugh Jackman in particular feels like an impossible star to replace. But with Deadpool, Marvel Studios already has Reynolds in place. That means there’s one less decision to make when adapting the X-Men. And therefore, it’s much easier to tie him into the MCU as soon as possible.

Plus, as much as Jackman redefined Wolverine, Reynolds has even closer ties to Deadpool. The actor first played a disappointing version in X-Men Origins: Wolverine and then spent several years helping to develop his own movie. As a producer on both Deadpool films and a writer on the second, Reynolds has far more ownership of his role than other stars.

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The Merc with the Mouth has a franchise already in progress

The biggest obstacle the MCU faces in bringing Deadpool into the franchise is the more adult tone of his solo movies. So Marvel Studios either needs to make peace with releasing an R-rated movie or risk alienating fans by drastically toning him down. That issue aside, the fact that Deadpool already has his own franchise helps introduce him to MCU audiences.

Because fans are already onboard, there’s no need for an origin story or really any additional groundwork the MCU needs to lay. If Marvel Studios wants to, it can drop Deadpool into the MCU. After all, he already exists outside both previous X-Men movie casts. Bonus points if Deadpool carries on like he’s always been there, despite other characters’ confusion.