Will ‘Deadpool’ Test Footage Lead to a Green-Light?
Fans of the wise-cracking, fourth wall-breaking Marvel Comics superhero Deadpool finally got a peek this week at what a Deadpool film might actually look like if it can ever escape development hell. Officially released by Blur Studios after the footage was allegedly leaked from 20th Century Fox, the two-minute long clip seemed to sync up nicely (maybe too nicely) with the end of San Diego’s Comic Con and has drummed up interest that might finally result in the film being greenlit after five years of starts and stops.
The superhero Deadpool is a mercenary and anti-hero who originally appeared as a villain in New Mutants #98 (1991). His abilities include accelerated healing, additional healing powers given to him through the Weapon X program, and a host of other skills including multiple forms of martial arts, sword skills, and marksmanship. But Deadpool’s popularity stems from his wise-cracking nature and his constant breaking of the fourth wall, in which he talks directly to the reader. Deadpool has also been known to become aware that he is in a comic, sometimes affecting the events of the story through meta means.
The clip begins with Deadpool sitting above a sprawling Los Angeles highway listening to music before he turns towards the camera and addresses the audience. “I bet you’re wondering why the red suit. Well, that’s so bad guys can’t see me bleed,” he says. Suddenly, an SUV and motorcycle suddenly grab his attention and he turns back to the audience. “Let’s hope these guys guys are wearing their brown pants.” He then jumps off the overpass directly into the SUV where he goes about beating down all of its occupants and beheading the motorcyclist with his trademark dark humor on full display. And at the very end, Deadpool says to the camera “Hi Tom!” in reference to former Fox CEO Tom Rothman, indicating that Deadpool will likely be aware that he is in a movie should it be made.
Deadpool remains one of 20th Century Fox’s Marvel properties and the film has been in the works since 2009 after Wade Wilson — Deadpool’s alter ego — appeared in X-Men Origins: Wolverine. The actor playing the role in that film is Ryan Reynolds, who has championed the Deadpool film ever since and is the star of the two-minute Deadpool test clip. Now, there seems to be enough buzz about the project that the film might finally see the light of day.
All in all, the footage seemed to go over extremely well with comic book fans, many of which are notoriously hard to please when it comes adapting comics to film. Featuring all the trademark characteristics of the difficult-to-adapt character, the Deadpool clip seems to indicate that the team behind the film is certainly on the right track when it comes to bringing Deadpool to the big screen. Reynold’s performance has also been given the thumbs up by the majority of onlookers who agree that Reynolds’ background in action and comedy acting seems to fit well with the tone of the character.
While we we probably won’t know for sure whether a Deadpool film is on the fast-track for some time, there’s no doubt that Fox is looking at the test footage’s positive reception very closely. The next big hurdle if the film gets greenlit will be whether the film is rated R or PG-13 — the latter of which is another huge roadblock in getting comic fans behind the film.