Deadpool 2 makes a joke about the inevitable X-Force movie. It’s already in the trailers. Deadpool dubs Domino (Zazie Beetz), Bedlam (Terry Crews) and their team the X-Force. Domino herself calls out how derivative that name is. While Deadpool 2 is sure not to become an X-Force movie, director David Leitch was actually developing X-Force when he was called upon to direct Deadpool 2.
“Part of the function of this movie was to introduce X-Force and expand the world with Deadpool in it,” Leitch told us. “That was something that drew me to the material. I was on early developing X-Force for a brief amount of time, which is how I think my name came up so quickly for Deadpool 2. So I left that to do this film, helping to introduce these characters in this way.”
X-Force wasn’t quite at the point of choosing team members when Leitch left, but he got several in Deadpool 2.
“We were still in discussions about who it was going to be and who we wanted in,” Leitch said. “It was really early days. It was sort of right around that time. Honestly, a month into it, I was doing my research about how I saw the world and I was putting together my package and take about what X-Force could be for me as a filmmaker. They flipped the script on me and said, ‘Hey, would you be interested in doing Deadpool 2?’ So I met with Ryan [Reynolds] on that.”
Reynolds has been the champion of Deadpool ever since he played a wonky version of Wade Wilson in X-Men Origins: Wolverine. Insisting that a real Deadpool movie be rated R, Reynolds even orchestrated the leak of a camera test that got the first movie greenlit. So he was equally discerning about the sequel.
“They had been working on some drafts,” Leitch said. “He had a real strong point of view about where he wanted to take it and I really liked it. As daunting as it was to step into a sequel that was so beloved, I really felt it was a good story and I wanted to tell it.”
An X-Force movie is inevitable, and there is already a New Mutants movie in production. It’s kind of funny, since the New Mutants comics introduced Deadpool, but the Deadpool movies came first. Leitch said he didn’t knowingly set up anything in New Mutants, but wouldn’t put it past Reynolds to sneak something in.
“Honestly, I don’t think we did,” Leitch said. “I say that because there are times when Mr. Ryan Reynolds might slip an Easter egg in through the art department that I might even be unaware of. I would think the Deadpool universe is standalone in some respects.”
Deadpool 2 opens May 18.