The original Deadpool movie still holds the record for the highest-grossing box office opening for an R-rated movie. During its debut weekend, the movie brought in $132.4 million, which was way beyond what the industry thought an R-rated movie could ever bring in. For director, Tim Miller, the movie was a breakout success. He was relatively new to big-budget movies and setting a box-office record was a major achievement.
Miller was all set to work on the sequel, Deadpool 2, which was predicted to be another box-office hit. But early into the production of the second Deadpool movie, Miller left the project. Director David Leitch stepped in to take his place. Why did Miller leave what was sure to be a successful film? At the time, he stayed respectfully quiet about the decision. But in a recent interview, he revealed that the reason he left was the franchise’s star, Ryan Reynolds!
When people leave movie projects, they often cite creative differences with their coworkers or costars as the reason. Sometimes that’s true, and sometimes it’s a cover for drama onset. In the case of Deadpool 2, it really was creative differences that drove Miller to leave the project. When he explained his reasons for going, Miller was clear that there was no personal drama between him and the franchise’s star, Ryan Reynolds. But he was also clear that Reynolds was the reason he left, in that Reynolds was very specific about his creative vision for the movie and the franchise. Essentially, Reynolds wanted total creative control of the Deadpool movies and Miller decided he couldn’t work that way.
“It became clear that Ryan wanted to be in control of the franchise. You can work that way as a director, quite successfully, but I can’t. I don’t mind having a debate, but if I can’t win, I don’t want to play. And I don’t think you can negotiate every creative decision, there’s too many to make,” said Miller.
Miller went on to say that he’s worked on other movies where he felt he didn’t have creative control and that he didn’t want to be in that position again. He also acknowledged that since Reynolds is the face of the franchise that he should be allowed to have creative control, but that he didn’t want to work on a project where his only role was to carry out someone else’s creative vision.
Why Is Reynolds So Attached To Deadpool?
It makes sense that Ryan Reynolds would want complete control over the Deadpool movies. Why? Because he’s been working on the character for over ten years and he’s been burned before. Talks about a Deadpool movie had been in the works for over a decade before the actual release of the stand-alone “Deadpool” movie. And Reynolds had been attached as the star from the very beginning. Reynolds admits that he’s not a diehard comic-book fanboy. It’s not like he’s been attached to the character of Deadpool since he was young. But as soon as he read the comics in preparation for a possible role, he knew that the character was something different and interesting.
So, he stayed attached to the various Deadpool projects that were kicking around Hollywood, pushing hard to get a stand-alone Deadpool movie made. He thought he’d made progress when Deadpool was written into the Wolverine: Origins movie, but when the writers drastically changed the character from the comic books Reynolds felt the character had been ruined. And he made it his personal crusade to get a movie where the character was true to the comic books.
Reynolds finally succeeded in 2016, over a decade after he was first approached to play Deadpool. So, while it may not work for some directors to work with a star who’s so attached to their character, Reynolds isn’t giving up creative control of this franchise anytime soon.
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