Exclusive: Deadpool Writers Talk Mutants, R Rating & X-Men Connections

Deadpool Set Photo - Ryan Reynolds and director Tim Miller
Ryan Reynolds as Deadpool and director Tim Miller

Do you remember your first comic?

Rhett Reese: Yes. In fact, I absolutely remember it. The very first comic that got me turned on to the whole genre was an Avengers episode where this Olympian god kidnapped The Beast and was going to kill The Beast and forced Iron Man to attack Hercules to weaken him so that he could defeat Hercules. Iron Man was immediately my favorite character because I pictured myself in the suit of armor. So I just fell in love with Marvel comics. I didn’t read much DC. It was almost entirely Marvel. It started from that comic. I read a ton of Iron Man, a ton of Avengers and West Coast Avengers.

Interestingly, I’d kind of gotten out of comics by the time Deadpool came around because I just wasn’t reading them as much. So, Deadpool I had to educate myself later.

Paul Wernick: I can’t remember what I had for breakfast this morning.


Is this more of a revenge story? Does Deadpool act as a hero in the traditional sense?

Paul Wernick: I’d say it’s more of a revenge story. It’s many things. It is a romantic comedy, a love story between two broken souls, Vanessa (Copycat, and Wade. It is a revenge story. It’s a story of redemption.

Rhett Reese: There is good versus evil in it. I mean Deadpool is very much an anti-hero. He’s made mistakes. He’s got blood on his hands often. He is willing to kill people. So he’s not the perfect person. But we juxtaposed him against a guy who is that much worse, just much, much worse. So even though it is a personal story of revenge, it also, I think, is a story about a morally gray guy defeating an evil guy…

Paul Wernick: And who wants, ultimately, to be a better person.

The S.H.I.E.L.D. Helicarrier in The Avengers
The S.H.I.E.L.D. Helicarrier in The Avengers

You made a joke about the title of the sequel. But that *pointing at concept art on walls* looks like the helicarrier from the Avengers films. How does that fit into the story?

Rhett Reese: What happens is in Act 3, Ajax, our villain, is trying to soften Deadpool up for the kill, so to speak. So he lures Deadpool out to this scrapyard, essentially. And among the things in the scrapyard is an old kind of beat up, decommissioned helicarrier. So it’s sitting there and it becomes a big set piece, part of the fight, this massive fight between Colossus, and Angel Dust, and Negasonic, and Ajax, and Deadpool, and a ton of thugs. So it’s just a great playground.

But this is like the twisted dark side of the helicarrier we’re used to seeing. It’s not gleaming, and shiny, and cool, and flying through the air. It’s been sold for scrap, essentially.

Paul Wernick: That was a big Tim… the helicarrier, when Tim came aboard, he felt like we needed to up the ante a little bit and kind of give it scope and scale and also make it fit into this bigger world.

Can you tell us about…you talked about adding a new character, Negasonic Teenage Warhead. Can you talk about some of the other characters and their abilities? We see Colossus a lot in these images.

Rhett Reese: Colossus we all know. Angel Dust, she’s kind of like The Hulk. She’s super strong. But the more adrenalized she gets and the more she fights she gets stronger, so that’s fun to watch. Ajax can’t feel pain. He’s had basically all of his nerve ending cauterized, so he both literally and metaphorically can’t feel anything. So he’s super creepy in that regard. I’m trying to think…

Paul Wernick: Well, Negasonic Teenage Warhead was… her powers in the comics were simply, I think, mindreading. She was a mind reader. We added the fact that she’s kind of explosive; that she can turn into an explosive weapon herself.

Rhett Reese: Yeah, she’s kind of a living, breathing warhead.

Paul Wernick: Interestingly, she wasn’t like that. You would think with a name like Negasonic Teenage Warhead she would be explosive, but she was not. So we added that.

Rhett Reese: And that’s it. I think those are our only…

Paul Wernick: Ajax…

Rhett Reese: Yeah, I mentioned Ajax.

Deadpool - Brianna Hildebrand as Teenage Negasonic Warhead
Brianna Hildebrand as Negasonic Teenage Warhead

What about Copycat?

Rhett Reese: Yeah, we haven’t addressed the copycat part of her nature in this movie. So she’s just Vanessa for now. It will remain to be seen if she actually turns out to be Copycat or how she turns out to be Copycat. But for now, as far as she knows, she’s just your average human being.

The way this movie ends, does it clearly set up the sequel or some other film?

Paul Wernick: It does…

Rhett Reese: It does…

Paul Wernick: Whether we take that path on the next one, we’re not sure. We’re still kind of…

Rhett Reese: Yeah, we don’t tie up every thread. So there’s definitely a hanging thread at the end of the movie. Whether that’s the one we choose to pursue, we’ll see.

So you guys have ideas in mind of what you would like to see…

Paul Wernick: We’re starting to think about it.

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