If you’re a fan of Marvel’s Deadpool comic book anti-hero who was excited when it was announced last week that after years of being trapped in development hell a big screen adaptation of the character was finally moving forward, you may want to hold off on popping the champagne corks just yet.
One of the sticking points about the project ever happening was the film’s rating, with the script by Zombieland writer/directors Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick definitely landing in the middle of rated R territory, which suited fans just fine.
But Mark Reilly, over on Schmoes Knows’s podcast “Meet The Movie Press,” is reporting that he heard fro the film’s director Tim Miller that they are actually aiming for a softer rating for the big screen adventures of the “Merc with a Mouth” –
I heard from the director that they finally figured out the script, and it was right before this was announced, that they figured out… And you guys are all going to hate this… They figured out how to make it PG-13. And therefore not lose its soul… That’s a quote… Of the script, so that they can make it. Look guys, it looks like Deadpool’s going to be PG-13.
This really shouldn’t come as much of a surprise. Business needs dictate a PG-13 rating in order to insure the maximum potential ticket buyers, and that getting the film from R-rated territory back to the more comfortable PG-13 zone is probably what placated the risk-adverse Fox brass to go ahead and greenlight the project.
But business needs aside, I do think it is a mistake that can hurt the actual film. The reason that the character is so popular right now is due in part to his irreverence towards the genre he exists in, frequent breaking of the fourth wall and comically over-the-top violence. And the leaked copy of the screenplay by Reese and Wernick certainly suggested that the writers had captured vibe. If Fox were to allow Reilly to go for a full on R-rated film, I dare say Deadpool could conceivably be the superhero genre’s equivalent of Evil Dead 2. But then again, Fox has never encouraged me to have hope that they’ll do the right thing by one of their superhero franchises.