A new promo for Once Upon a Deadpool - a PG-13 cut of Deadpool 2 with newly added scenes - reveals the "real" reason for its MPAA rating. What a difference a few years makes. Before the 2016 release of Fox's first Deadpool movie starring Ryan Reynolds as the Merc with a Mouth, Wade Wilson's entire big screen legacy was his small role in the infamously disastrous 2009 film X-Men Origins: Wolverine. Now, Deadpool is one of the most reliably bankable characters in Hollywood.
No doubt boosted by the great reviews it earned from critics, 2016's Deadpool smashed through all kinds of records for both a February theatrical release and an R-rated film. Made for only $58 million, Deadpool banked nearly $800 million worldwide, and likely made Fox wish they had listened to Reynolds' pleas about making a Deadpool movie back when he first started making them. 2018's Deadpool 2 wasn't quite as profitable as the original, if only because it cost almost double to make. Still, the sequel earned $734 million, and currently stands as the 7th highest-grossing movie of the year.
On December 12, Deadpool returns to theaters, sooner than anyone expected. Instead of starring in Deadpool 3 or leading an X-Force movie, Deadpool is back in the holiday-themed Once Upon a Deadpool, a PG-13 cut of Deadpool 2 that includes recently filmed scenes. The film is presented as if Deadpool was reading a bedtime story to a tied-up Fred Savage, in a nod to 1987 classic The Princess Bride. A new promo for Once Upon a Deadpool has been shared by Reynolds, which can be seen below. In it, Savage asks Deadpool multiple questions, including why the film is rated PG-13. His answer is typically sarcastic.
While Deadpool's response to Savage's question about Once Upon a Deadpool's rating clearly isn't serious - this is Deadpool talking, after all - it echoes what most fans had assumed since the announcement of the re-cut film. Fox - and by extension its soon to be owner Disney - wants more families with kids to go and see Deadpool in theaters, and created a version of the movie more likely to draw them in. Plus, as Deadpool notes, there's more money to be made, and probably not really much effort required to make it. Even if Once Upon a Deadpool only makes a million or two in its limited theatrical engagement, it's still presumably much more than filming some new scenes with Savage and Reynolds cost.
If Disney does end up electing to make a Deadpool 3 following their takeover of Fox, and also decides to keep the film's initial release R-rated, one wonders if the studio will make this an annual tradition. Perhaps there will be a PG-13 version of Deadpool 3 in which Deadpool kidnaps another former child star, such as Macaulay Culkin. Whatever happens, one assumes people will be a bit more wary about pitching a potential premise for Deadpool's next holiday special on Twitter.
Source: Ryan Reynolds