For Marvel fans anxious to see an R-Rated film set in the MCU, don’t hold your breath. While R-Rated action and genre films are certainly nothing new, recent years have seen various successful superhero projects emerge with the rating. Since 2000, the superhero film and TV genre have grown exponentially, allowing filmmakers and studios to explore new avenues within the genre. Last year, Deadpool shocked everyone by not only becoming a smash hit, but doing so with a small budget and an R rating. Proving the Fox’s success with the character wasn’t a fluke, this years Logan managed the same feat.
While Deadpool had studios buzzing, Logan‘s success proved to be the catalyst for studios to begin exploring the option of more R-Rated superhero films in earnest. As such, the past few months have been packed with news about more R-Rated comic book movies that could be on the way. Warner Bros. has stated they’re open to pursuing an R-Rated film in the DCEU. Meanwhile, Sony’s Venom spinoff may just be their first superhero film to be rated R. All told, fans are excited to see more movies like Deadpool and Logan, especially from Marvel Studios.
While speaking with THR, Kevin Feige dashed those hopes when asked if Marvel Studios would ever consider trying their own R-Rated film.
“My takeaway from both of those films [Deadpool and Logan] is not the R rating, it’s the risk they took, the chances they took, the creative boundaries that they pushed. That should be the takeaway for everyone.”
Feige went on to say that his takeaway from the films was the absurdity and fourth-wall-breaking in Deadpool and the dark and final climax of Logan that made those films challenging and thus successful. His point is actually something echoed by a lot of critics, fans, and filmmakers. Studios are often quick to try and copy the most surface level elements of a hit movie in hopes of replicating its success. While the R rating of the films in question certainly allowed them to push a few boundaries, they were hardly the soul of the movies.
While we think Marvel has plenty of characters worthy of an R-Rated film, it’s also not necessary. After all, their Netflix shows regularly push those boundaries. What’s more, but a bit more blood and a few dirty words won’t really add anything to the success Marvel has already seen at the box office. While it’s fun to imagine a no-holds-barred take on certain heroes and villains, Marvel have been able to post such massive global numbers thanks to their wide appeal. Then again, as they start turning out three or more movies a year, they may find the space to experiment a bit more with their format.