Deadpool 2 is an upcoming American superhero film based on the Marvel Comicscharacter Deadpool, distributed by 20th Century Fox. It is intended to be the eleventh installment in the X-Men film series, and a sequel to the 2016 film Deadpool. The film is directed by David Leitch from a script by Rhett Reese, Paul Wernick, and Ryan Reynolds, with Reynolds starring in the title role alongside Josh Brolin, Morena Baccarin, Julian Dennison, Zazie Beetz, T.J. Miller, Brianna Hildebrand, Jack Kesy, and Stefan Kapičić. In Deadpool 2, Deadpool forms the team X-Force to protect a young mutant from Cable.
Plans for a sequel to Deadpool began before that film's release, and were confirmed in February 2016. Though the original creative team of Reynolds, Reese, Wernick, and director Tim Miller were quickly set to return for the second film, Miller left the project in October 2016 due to creative differences with Reynolds, and was soon replaced by Leitch. An extensive casting search took place to fill the role of Cable, with Brolin ultimately cast; the casting of Beetz as Domino was also noteworthy. Filming took place in British Columbia, Canada, from June to October 2017. During filming, stunt woman Joi "SJ" Harris died in a motorcycle accident.
Deadpool 2 is scheduled to be released in the United States on May 18, 2018. A sequel, Deadpool 3, is in development.
Deadpool forms a team of mutants called the X-Force to protect a young mutant from the time-traveling soldier Cable.
- Ryan Reynolds as Wade Wilson / Deadpool:
A wisecracking mercenary with accelerated healing but severe scarring over his body after undergoing an experimental regenerative mutation.
- Josh Brolin as Nathan Summers / Cable:
A time travelling cybernetic mutant soldier, "in many ways the opposite of Deadpool".Director David Leitch called the dynamic between Cable and Deadpool "sort of classic buddy-cop fare", and compared them to the characters portrayed by Nick Nolte and Eddie Murphy, respectively, in 48 Hrs. (1982). Brolin signed a four-film deal to play the character, and described his appearance here as just the introduction for the character, with "three more movies to reveal more."
- Morena Baccarin as Vanessa: An escort and Wilson's fiancée.
- Julian Dennison as Russell:
A young mutant being hunted by Cable. Dennison was the only actor that the creative team considered for the role, with Russell "sort of a tailor-made character" for the actor.
- Zazie Beetz as Neena Thurman / Domino:
A mercenary with the mutant ability to manipulate luck. Leitch described the film's version of the character as Beetz' own "real fun interesting take". Beetz began "doing strength conditioning, so that's like working out everyday" when she got the role, for which she has to "be shooting guns, I fight and a lot of that movement is full body and physical."
- T.J. Miller as Weasel: Wilson's best friend, the owner of a bar frequented by mercenaries.
- Brianna Hildebrand as Negasonic Teenage Warhead:
A teenage X-Man with the mutant power to detonate atomic bursts from her body, she is now a "new level of X-Men" after being a trainee in the first film. Hildebrand felt that "it's cool that she's grown and matured and she still has so much of this essence of a punk kid" from the first film, and added that the character would have a "cooler" costume in the sequel.
- Jack Kesy as Black Tom Cassidy: A mutant who can manipulate energy through plants.
- Stefan Kapičić as the voice of Colossus:
An X-Man with the mutant ability to transform his entire body into organic steel. Kapičić described Colossus as one of the most important characters in the film, requiring a more intense process for Kapičić during recording for the character. He explained that Colossus would continue to try make Deadpool a better person and potential X-Man after doing so in the first film.
Additionally, Leslie Uggams and Karan Soni return from the first film as Deadpool's elderly roommate Blind Al and the taxi driver Dopinder, respectively. Terry Crewsportrays Bedlam,and Rob Delaney appears as Peter. Shioli Kutsuna, Eddie Marsan, and Bill Skarsgård have been cast in undisclosed roles.
Producer Simon Kinberg revealed in September 2015 that discussions had begun regarding ideas for a sequel to Deadpool, which was set to be released in February 2016. One idea was for the film to introduce the character Cable, who had previously been looked at to appear in the first Deadpool, and X-Men: Days of Future Past before that. Cable's inclusion in the potential sequel was confirmed by the character Deadpool, breaking the fourth wall, in the post-credit scene of the first film. Domino, a character with connections to Cable in the comics, was also believed to be featured in the sequel. By the first film's release, 20th Century Fox had green-lit a sequel, with writers Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick returning to write the screenplay. Though director Tim Miller and producer/star Ryan Reynolds were not confirmed for the sequel at the time, Fox was "intent on keeping the creative team together". Miller and Reynolds' involvement was confirmed at the 2016 CinemaCon that April, though Miller had still not formally signed on to direct the sequel yet. He began work developing the script with the writers, while Reynolds had signed a new contract granting him "casting approval and other creative controls".
It has to tonally and stylistically be as fresh and original [as the first film]. That's a big challenge especially because they had 10 years to gestate on the first movie and we don't have that kind of time on the second movie. That's the biggest mandate going [into] the second film ... we have to resist the temptation to make it bigger.
In June 2016, Kinberg said that a completed draft from Wernick and Rheese was expected "soon", and that they were looking to begin filming the sequel at the beginning of 2017. By August, Kyle Chandler was believed to be in the running to portray Cable. Testing of actresses for Domino had also begun by October, with the shortlist of actresses under consideration including Lizzy Caplan, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Sienna Miller, Sofia Boutella, Stephanie Sigman, Sylvia Hoeks, Mackenzie Davis, Ruby Rose, Eve Hewson, and Kelly Rohrbach. The producers were particularly interested in casting a black or Latina actress in the role.
At the end of October, Miller left the film over "mutual creative differences" with Reynolds. The rift between the pair was reportedly based on several factors, including Reynolds' expanded creative control over the sequel; Miller's wish for a more stylized follow-up than the first film, versus Reynolds' focus "on the raunchy comedy style that earned the first movie its R rating"; and Miller's intention to cast Chandler as Cable, which Reynolds opposed. Fox ultimately backed "its marketable star" over Miller, who had made his directorial debut with the first film. Miller denied these reported reasons, while Reynolds said, "All I can really add is that I'm sad to see him off the film. Tim's brilliant and nobody worked harder on Deadpool than he did." A week after Miller's departure, Fox was looking at David Leitch, Drew Goddard, Magnus Martens, and Rupert Sanders as potential replacements for the director. Leitch was the "strong frontrunner" for the role, and signed on to direct a month later. Reynolds, a fan of Leitch's John Wick, said the director "really understands those Deadpool sensibilities and where we need to take the franchise from here." He added that Leitch "can make a movie on an ultra tight minimal budget look like it was shot for 10–15 times what it cost."
Reese and Wernick had completed multiple drafts of the script by January 2017, saying, "It's taken different twists and turns, but it's really coalescing"; the film was still on track to begin filming that year. The pair felt a responsibility to explore the team X-Force, which includes Deadpool, Cable, and Domino in the comics, with Reese saying the sequel's purpose "is not to set up X-Force [but] it will likely set up X-Force." He did clarify that though the film will be "populated with a lot of characters ... it is still Deadpool's movie". The pair confirmed that Stefan Kapičić's Colossus, Brianna Hildebrand's Negasonic Teenage Warhead, and Karan Soni's Dopinder would be returning from the first film to "make at least an appearance", and that the film would not be exploring the details of Cable's convoluted comic origins. By the next month, it had been noted that there had been few announcements from Fox regarding the film, and that a release date had not yet been set which was seen as unusual for sequels to popular films (often studios "announce sequels far too soon and with no idea what will happen"), with the issue deemed to be the film's script. Reynolds, Reese, and Wernick had been "bunkered down, working on the script together, trying to cross the finish line and create something everyone is excited to make". At that time, Goddard joined the project to consult on the script.
By the beginning of March 2017, Michael Shannon had been in the running to portray Cable, but no longer could due to a scheduling conflict. David Harbour had screen-tested for the role, and Pierce Brosnan was believed to be in negotiations for a part in the film, potentially Cable.Reynolds announced shortly after that Zazie Beetz had been cast as Domino. Later in the month, Shannon was in the running to portray Cable again, and was considered the frontrunner, with Fox also looking at a shortlist of other actors that included Harbour. Brad Pitt had also been considered for the role, and expressed interest in taking it, but had "moved on". Leitch soon addressed the potential casting of these actors, saying Shannon "would make an incredible Cable ... If that happens, I would be through the roof"; and on Pitt, "We had a great meeting with Brad, he was incredibly interested in the property. Things didn't work out schedule-wise. He's a fan, and we love him, and I think he would've made an amazing Cable." At the end of March, Morena Baccarin confirmed her return from the first film as Vanessa, and expressed interest in exploring the character's Copycat persona from the comics in the sequel. Josh Brolin emerged as a "surprise contender" to play Cable in April, ahead of Shannon and Harbour, and was officially cast in the role. Brolin also portrays the Marvel Comics character Thanos, in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Leslie Uggams confirmed that she would be reprising her role of Blind Alfrom the first film, while Fox gave the sequel a June 1, 2018 release date.
Regarding the release date, Leitch wanted to ensure that the film "was worthy of a summer tentpole movie, and we knew we were going to be wedged in between some big films", specifically wanting to expand the action and make the general feeling of the film "bigger" than the first one. However, he wanted the film to have the same DNA as the original "in terms of the tone, and the fun ... I love that challenge" of combining that with the increased scope. The film uses Deadpool's fourth wall-breaking to reference its release between other major films, with Leitch calling these comments "definitely fresh and timely when they come up." In May 2017, Fox was reportedly looking to use a post-credits scene at the end of Deadpool 2 to introduce several other members of X-Force who would go on to star alongside Reynolds, Brolin, and Beetz in an X-Force film. Casting for the characters—Sunspot, Feral, and Shatterstar—would take place over the coming months, though Reese denied the accuracy of this report. Later, T.J. Miller confirmed that he would return from the first film as Weasel, and described the sequel as "even more weaselicious" than the first. He noted that Reynolds and the writers had "really put the time in on the script" to meet their own expectations for the sequel as well as those of fans. Jack Kesy also joined the cast, as Black Tom Cassidy. In June, Shioli Kutsuna was cast in a key role for the film.
Initial filming had begun by June 17, 2017, at Hatley Castle in Victoria, Canada, which is used to portray the X-Mansion in the X-Men films. Principal photography began in Vancouver on June 26, under the working title Love Machine. Jonathan Selaserved as cinematographer for the film. At the end of June, Reynolds revealed that Julian Dennison had been cast in the film.The next month, T. J. Miller said that he found the sequel to be funnier than the first film, and that "it's not going to be the same movie in a different location [like The Hangover Part II]. It's got different stakes, different things happen, some pretty tragic, dark shit happens in the first part of the film, in the beginning, and the rest of the film is kind of dealing with that." By then, Kapičić had been working with Leitch on the set, and expected to continue contributing to Colossus through to April 2018.
On August 14, stunt woman Joi "SJ" Harris died in a motorcycle accident after losing control and crashing into Shaw Tower. Harris, the first African-American female professional road racer, was working on the film as a stunt performer for the first time and had only joined the production a week before. Harris was not wearing a helmet because the character she was portraying, Domino, does not wear one in the scene, and there had not been time since she joined the film to create one for her to fit underneath the Domino wig. She had two full days of rehearsing the stunt as well as five more attempts on the day of the accident. Veteran stunt double Melissa Stubbs had been available and willing to do the stunt, but the inexperienced Harris was preferred due to her skin color being a match for Beetz. This decision was criticized by multiple stunt professionals, with many noting that Harris' experiences racing motorcycles did not necessarily qualify her as an able stunt performer. Production on the film was shut down immediately after the incident, but resumed two days later. With this news also came reports that the film's crew were "enduring very long hours" and were "exhausted by the schedule", with a member of the studio confirming that some days had gone beyond the scheduled 12–13 hours filming, up to 15–plus hours.
Earlier in August, Reynolds revealed that Rob Delaney was at the film's set and Eddie Marsan revealed that he was also on set for a role in the film later in the month.Filming in Vancouver was expected to last until October 6, with production on Deadpool 2 being officially completed on October 14. Discussing the film's action, having previously worked as a stunt coordinator, Leitch said that all stunts are "variations on a theme" with the same basic elements, but Deadpool allows you to "subvert those basics, and there's an expectation for a classic gag, but oops, maybe you get something else." He also felt that introducing Domino gave the film unique opportunities for action sequences taking advantage of her luck-based abilities, as well as focusing on Deadpool's healing abilities and trying to use those to create interesting action.
Fox revealed in November that the film was technically untitled at that point, and not officially known as Deadpool 2 as had been assumed; the studio was temporarily referring to the film as The Untitled Deadpool Sequel.In January 2018, the film's release was moved up to May 18, 2018. A month later, Terry Crews was revealed to have a role in the film, the character Shatterstar was confirmed to be appearing, and the production returned to Vancouver for six days of reshoots under a new working title, Daisy.
While some reports emerged by mid-March claiming that the reshoots were due to poor audience responses during test screenings of the film, and consisted of sweeping changes, the film was soon confirmed to be testing better than the original did, up to 98 out of 100 over three different tests (compared to a maximum score of 91 during tests of the first film). Because of this, the reshoots were adding more of the elements that audiences responded positively to, including additional material featuring Cable and Domino. By the end of the month, two hours-worth of filming had taken place in Los Angeles for a then-secret cameo appearance, and the film's first full trailer was released. Officially titling the film Deadpool 2, the trailer also revealed that Crews was portraying Bedlam; that Delaney was in the film, portraying Peter; and that Bill Skarsgård also had a role.
Box office projection and Sequel Edit
Initial box office projections for the film in March 2018 expected it to gross $100 million over its opening weekend in the United States and Canada, with a final domestic total expected to be lower than that of the first film ($363 million) at around $242 million.
By November 2016, with development underway on Deadpool 2, Fox was also planning Deadpool 3, which was said to include the team X-Force With the confirmation that Leitch would direct Deadpool 2, it was revealed that Fox was looking for a separate filmmaker to direct Deadpool 3. In March 2017, Reese clarified that though Deadpool 2 sets-up the X-Force team, a future film focused on the team would be separate from Deadpool 3, "so I think we'll be able to take two paths. [X-Force] is where we're launching something bigger, but then [Deadpool 3 is] where we're contracting and staying personal and small." After the proposed acquisition of 21st Century Fox by Disney was announced in December 2017, Disney CEO Bob Iger said that Deadpool would be integrated with the Marvel Cinematic Universe under Disney, and that the company would be willing to make future R-rated Deadpool films "as long as we let the audiences know what's coming".