After years of crossing one’s fingers and hoping that our favorite merc with a mouth would get his own film. Years of doubt Later, it is finally happening. Fans are getting a Deadpool movie thanks to focus. Already announced with a February 12th, 2016 release date. Just in time for some meta Valentine’s Day moments. However, no sooner than we got the announcement that Deadpool would be on the big screen, we got news that there is a large chance Deadpool that rather than getting the R-Rated Deadpool that we hoped, it’s very likely that it will be PG-13.
How it Started
This all started when Deadpool was included in X-Men Origins: Wolverine. His character was absolutely botched, but it gave hope that we could potentially one day see a proper adaptation of the character. A few months ago, footage that had been shot years ago, made its way to the internet. It isn’t clear that the Studio itself didn’t leak the test footage to gauge how well it is received. Either way the ball got rolling for this movie years ago. While it was clear at the time that it just wasn’t going to happen Ryan Reynolds never stopped advocating for the role. Some may say he’s had terrible luck with comic book movies in the past (Blade Trinity, Wolverine, Green Lantern, and RIPD), but he is really passionate about Deadpool. As long as quality is the goal and the script and direction is to par, I’m certain that things will finally work in his favor. If there’s one thing I know it’s that Ryan Reynolds has charisma, but just hasn’t found the right project yet.
Spirit of Deadpool
Deadpool in the comics isn’t quite as vile as one may thing. Yes, there are a number of grotesque, obscene, and outrageous. However, the spirit of Deadpool doesn’t necessarily require an R rating. What it requires is a rating that will allow it to convey spirit of the Deadpool comic. As far as I’m concerned that means firmly establishing the meta aspect of the comic in the movie universe will be most important. Portraying a relatively good man with easily swayable morals is key. Making sure that the film is constantly firing jokes will be a major factor. Yes, Deadpool is a merc and things often get messy. However, whenever things get messy he’s always cracking jokes. I honestly believe that you can accomplish all those things without necessarily going all too gory.
PG-13 vs R
There are a lot of people who are up in arms about Deadpool being PG-13. To that I wonder how well they really know the movie business. Deadpool is an iconic character. Despite being iconic, many people know him more as a figure than having really delved into the character depicted in the comics. For FOX their best bet is to make a movie that can be marketed as PG-13. There are kids who like Deadpool and having a rating that makes it accessible to them raises the chances of making more money.
What many people in an uproar are upset about is the lack of cursing and gore that may be excluded from the film in order to make a PG-13 rating. There is a lot that one can get away with in a PG-13 rating. It is all about how it is cut and the amount of gore we see. The comics don’t shy away from blood, but they don’t revel in it like fans seem to want. Even Deadpool’s potty mouth can make it in to an extent as there are limits on how much each curse is said. All that being the case, I still strongly believe that Deadpool can manage a PG-13 rating without losing the spirit of the comic. A comic which doesn’t often curse, preferring to bleep in comic. An effect that could be used effectively on screen (not to mention it could be unbleeped for an unrated version).
The test footage portrays a Deadpool people want to see. He’s funny, he’s charismatic, and violent. That said, none of the violence is really over the top. There’s blood, but never excessively. I can’t imagine that what was shown there wouldn’t be given a PG-13 rating. The real issue is that PG-13 has a stigma. It is seen as watered down and not unfiltered enough. It isn’t gritty enough, but a kiddie version of what could be possible. In fact, I’ve seen more violence in PG-13 movies of late than I have in R. The key is the way it is cut and there is no reason that a Deadpool movie can’t be extremely violent with a PG-13 rating. Besides, the whole point of Deadpool isn’t just uber violence, he’s more than that.
The sad truth is the Deadpool movie is a business move and the best choice to further the business will be made. That maybe a PG-13 rating in this case. The good news, is if the spirit of Deadpool is left in tact, everything should be alright.