Deadpool & Wolverine News: Hugh Jackman’s One-in-a-Billion Idea 5

Ryan Reynolds felt like he had one more Deadpool movie in him but finding the right story took years — and help from Hugh Jackman and director Shawn Levy.

One day while on the set of The Adam Project after pitching several ideas to Marvel for Deadpool 3, Reynolds told Levy that he wanted to do another film in the franchise if he could work with the director on the sequel.

“I remember Ryan going, ‘Now, I know you’re going to say no,’” Levy told Vanity Fair in a joint interview with Reynolds and Jackman. “I remember either verbally or in my mind going, ‘What are you talking about? I’m already a yes.’”

Reynolds added, “We knew we wanted to work together as much as humanly possible until we crawl into a box and turn into skeletons, but I wasn’t totally certain it would be in that Marvel space because it isn’t original IP. … It would technically be a sequel, and there’s a lot of pressure that comes with it.”

The frequent collaborators spent a few months working with Deadpool and Deadpool 2 screenwriting team Paul Wernick and Rhett Reese and scribe Zeb Wells, trying to come up with story ideas and having weekly meetings with Marvel Studios boss Kevin Feige. However, they struggled to find a story that felt original and non-derivative of the previous installments.

“Ryan and I were right at the edge of saying to Kevin, ‘You know what? Maybe now is not the right moment because we’re not coming up with a story,’” Levy revealed. “And that is the moment when Ryan’s phone rang, and it was Hugh calling from his car.”

On Aug. 15, 2022, Jackman was on a week-long break from his two-year run in The Music Man on Broadway when he was sitting on a beach thinking about what he wanted to do next, and he recalled he immediately thought: “Deadpool-Wolverine. I want to do that movie.”

Despite being mildly concerned over how he could continue the story of Wolverine after Logan tied up his story nicely, Jackman called Reynolds right away and told him he wanted to do the film. Reynolds recounted thinking he couldn’t believe the timing because they were about to have a meeting with Feige and weren’t sure what they were going to do.

“On the Zoom with Kevin, we just cut right to the fucking chase,” the Free Guy star told Vanity Fair. “We said, ‘Look, this call just came in. I feel like we’d be idiots to look this gift horse in the mouth and ignore it. This is a one-in-a-billion chance. I really feel like this is what we’ve been looking for.’”

Jackman explained that he knew Deadpool would allow him to explore a different side of Wolverine than he had previously, noting that everything felt new and fresh to him in the possible storylines they were looking into.

“And I’d be sharing it with Ryan and Shawn, who are two of my best friends,” the Les Misérables Oscar nominee said. “The three of us together are like the Three Amigos. There was not a day where I wasn’t in tears laughing. I felt so rejuvenated playing the part. I mean, I’m 25 years in, man, and it feels better than ever.”

Levy echoed Jackman’s statement about how their friendship played a part in the production of Deadpool & Wolverine. “This friendship between the three of us also made the movie better,” he said. “You’re not embarrassed to try weird, dumb shit. And some of it is going to fail. Some of it doesn’t work. But if you’re comfortable failing in front of your buddies, you’re also going to be comfortable trying stuff that will be inspired.”

While Reynolds, Jackman and Levy wouldn’t give away too much about the storyline of their upcoming R-rated film, they did tease a bit about the dynamics of Deadpool’s silliness and lightheartedness and how it contrasted with Wolverine’s much more serious demeanor.

“If you’re looking at the Venn diagram or the overlap of these two characters, as vastly different as they are, the thing they have most in common is shame,” Reynolds explained. “They both live in this violent shame cycle. Deadpool’s a very verbose character. He’s very feminine and kind of open and childlike. And putting that next to a character whose archetype is very Clint Eastwood creates something pretty interesting.”

Deadpool & Wolverine hits theaters July 26.

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