Deadpool is not your typical superhero movie. It has Ryan Reynolds as the wise-cracking, gun-slinging, katana-wielding, fourth wall-breaking “merc with the mouth,” in addition to an R rating for loads of bullet-through-the-head antics. To better situate audiences for everything that’s coming their way, director Tim Miller and producer Simon Kinberg broke down the latest trailer and revealed some secrets along the way.
Set in Detroit, Deadpool tells the story of Wade Wilson who is left with accelerated healing but all around messed up after he agrees to an experimental procedure. Now he’s on the loose to hunt down the people that did this to him.
The new trailer, which dropped on Christmas Day, features more footage of his shenanigans, in addition to more from Colossus (the recently announced Stefan Kapicic), Negasonic Teenage Warhead (Brianna Hildebrand), and strongwoman Angel Dust (Gina Carano).
Check out some behind-the-scenes details on the footage Miller and Kinberg revealed to Empire magazine.
Detroit: According to Miller, the writers described the setting as “a pre-post apocalyptic Detroit.” He continued, “I think there are some certain geographical clues in our story in that everybody knows that the X-Men live in upstate New York-ish and so we can’t be too far away. But the idea was that it should look like a s—ty place because you want to set Deadpool and his world apart as something different: grittier, nastier, you know, more like Daredevil where it’s down in the streets where he’s dealing with small-time s–t that the X-Men and their shiny hi-tech world don’t deal with.”
The “Can’t-Sit-Still” Superhero: “He’s like a kid with ADD who’s had too much sugar and he can’t sit still,” Miller said, “he’s constantly fidgeting and looking to entertain himself. I’m sure there’s a word for it that therapists have for those kids who need constant input! But he’s definitely that guy.”
Christmas is Here: Deadpool tells the cab driver in the trailer that he’s after people on his “naughty list.” According to Kinberg, “it’s Christmas for his character.” While he didn’t want to give away too much, he explained, “his character isn’t necessarily connected to all of the reality of our world. But we did plan the film to be a heartwarming holiday classic — we had to work Christmas in there.”
Say Hello to My Little Friends: Aside from Deadpool’s katannas, the merc with the mouth wields Desert Eagles. “If you haven’t ever held one of those things, they weigh about 50 pounds each,” Miller said. “They’re huge, heavy pistols that can basically blow your head apart. So they’re pretty powerful.”
The Recruiter: Not much is revealed about the mystery man who seeks out Wade for the experimental surgery, and Miller said they don’t really say whether he is or isn’t a mutant. “He certainly is very, very good at convincing people to do things that they shouldn’t do when they’re vulnerable.”
“Poor Man’s Weapon X”: In the X-Men comic book world, Weapon X is a secret government research project that experiments on mutants — the same project that gave Wolverine his adamantium skeleton. Miller calls the organization in his film “a poor man’s Weapon X.” Kinberg wouldn’t say much else other than it’s “a facility.”
Angel Dust: “She’s a little like the Hulk, in that the angrier she gets, her adrenaline sort of activates this super strength,” Miller said of the character, played by MMA fighter-turned-actress Gina Carano. “So the angrier she gets, the harder she fights and stronger she is, so that’s her power in the comics and we try to play that up a little bit in the fight sequences.”
He continued, “In hindsight, I can’t even imagine considering an actress who didn’t have the kind of history that Gina did, because just on our budget level and the way we wanted to do these fights to keep them grounded there was no way that a stunt person could step in and do what she did, which was just incredibly physical. She would do these scenes with the stunt guy and then we’d take him out and she’d do them by herself so we’d have these clean actions and it was amazing. She’s got photographic reflexes and every f—ing take she was going all out. It was great.”
Off Book: Comedian T.J. Miller (Silicon Valley) portrays Weasel in Deadpool, and his skills as a stand-up comic proved handy while filming. Kinberg said a lot of Miller’s lines were improvised, especially the scene in the trailer where he’s reacting to Wade’s scarring. “There was one take that was probably ten different versions of it — they were all improvised and were all f—ing hilarious,” Kinberg said. “And they’re so specific and insane and I think could only come out of T.J.’s brain. Like, eventually a gag reel or something on the DVD somewhere we’ll put it all together and just show some single takes of it and you can see how gifted and scary his brain is.”
Blind Al: While Miller said Leslie Uggams as Blind Al is similar to the comics, the source material “has some darker aspects as to why she’s with Deadpool that we don’t really explore.” Her scenes with Reynolds were the first scenes shot for the movie, and they help better humanize the tortured hero. “I think where it falls in the movie really makes us root for him even more because he’s going through this horrible thing but he still has very human scenes with [Al].”
The Naughty List: Deadpool is after a lot of people, and he has an entire wall dedicated to tracking them down. “It’s a part of the plot, I don’t think we should ruin it, but there’s so many people that are on his naughty list that he is hunting down for reasons we can keep mysterious and then you can discover when you watch the movie,” Kinberg said.
Nagasonic Teenage Warhead: “I think Deadpool wishes she’d keep her mouth shut more than she does in the film! Because she’s quite snarky,” Miller said of the mutant played by Brianna Hildebrand. “But, you know, her whole attitude is this disaffected teen who thinks Deadpool’s just a douchebag.”
Miller further explained that he and the writers wanted a trainee for Colossus and they fell in love with the character’s name. In the comics, she’s a telepath with precognitive abilities, but Miller and co. wanted her powers to fit the name.
Likening her to someone like Nitro, he said, “She can transfer the force of the explosion down so she can move upwards — she can put it into a punch if she wanted to. So it was really just her fist exploding as she hit somebody. We tried to mix it up, even though we didn’t use that particular thing in the movie, but it was the idea. Actually, we did use it in the movie, it’s just not in the movie now!”
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Deadpool hits theaters on Feb. 12. Head to Empire for more on the trailer from Miller and Kinberg.