Disney officially completed its deal to acquire a significant portion of 21st Century Fox, including its movie and TV studios, earlier today, raising questions about how the family-friendly company would handle its newly procured R-rated properties. In a conference call with investors, chairman and CEO Bob Iger took the question head-on when addressing the future of Deadpool and broached the possibility of an extended “Marvel-R brand.”
“[Deadpool] clearly has been and will be Marvel branded. But we think there might be an opportunity for a Marvel-R brand for something like Deadpool,” said Iger (via The Hollywood Reporter). “As long as we let the audiences know what’s coming, we think we can manage that fine.”
The answer should satisfy Deadpool lead actor Ryan Reynolds. When rumors about talks between the two companies first surfaced, he wrote on Twitter, “If this is true, I wonder how the fudge it would affect Deadpool?” It also opens up intriguing possibilities for future films in the Marvel Cinematic Universe — which now could potentially included the X-Men — to lean more towards adult cinema.
While Disney’s Marvel Cinematic Universe films have remained in PG-13 territory, Fox has found success in the R-rated category with two recent X-Men films. In 2016, Deadpool became the highest grossing X-Men movie ever by earning $783 million worldwide. This year, Logan earned $616 million worldwide.
Deadpool 2 is currently in production and stars Reynolds as the titular character alongside Zazie Beetz as Domino and Josh Brolin as Cable. The comic book sequel will arrive in theaters on June 1st, 2018. Drew Goddard’s X-Force film is also in the works, which would see Reynold’s Deadpool, Brolin’s Cable, and potentially even Beetz’s Domino forming a black-ops version of the X-Men. How that production will proceed now that Disney’s in control will be interesting to watch.
In the meantime, watch the latest teaser trailer for Deadpool 2.