Like most adult geeks who like movies, I really liked Deadpool 2. It was a great film, filled with potty jokes and violence, which is how I wanted a film featuring the Merc with a Mouth to be. It totally worked for the first film and it worked once again with his second outing. Seeing that, Deadpool 2 ruled the box-office, it proved that, once again, putting out a movie going for a R-rating isn’t box office poison. As long as the movie is good, people are going to flock to it.
I honestly can’t wait for it to come to Blu-Ray over here in the Philippines. I rarely spring for getting Blu-Ray copies of films because they can be so darned expensive. I only do this for the movies that I really like… and I really liked Deadpool 2 so I’m okay to splurge on this.
But it turns out I might be able to go watch Deadpool 2 on the big screen again… but a toned down version, so to speak. Out of nowhere, Fox announced that they are releasing a new Deadpool film on December of this year! No concrete details have been released yet regarding the movie. It hasn’t even been given an official name yet as it’s being called “Untitled Deadpool Movie” (but it would be so Deadpool-like if “Untitled Deadpool Movie” is the real title). But rumors are circulating that it will not be a brand new film. Rather, it’s heavily suggested that the “Untitled Deadpool Movie” will just be Deadpool 2… but cut down into a PG-13 film! And, in all honesty and without a drop of irony, I’m actually excited for it if it’s true.
Now, before you read any further, I have to leave a disclaimer that there will be SPOILERS for both the first and second Deadpool movies. I mean, the films have been out for quite a while now; you can even watch Deadpool 2 online right now! But, for the case of the kiddies who aren’t able to watch them because they are Rated-R films, well, yes. There will be SPOILERS!
The clamor for a “cleaned up” version of a Deadpool film isn’t actually anything new. When the first film was coming out and it was revealed it was getting a “hard R” rating, there was actually a clamor for Fox to downplay all of the stuff that made it not suitable for children. There were some kids and their parents who saw the PG version of the trailers and they wanted Fox to release two versions: a PG-13 version and an R-rated version. Grace Randolph of Beyond the Trailer even created an online petition because an 8-year old kid saw the “family friendly” trailers and wanted to watch it. But it didn’t matter because Deadpool was still released in its original “adult” state and it was a huge hit.
When that “debate” sprung up, I was definitely in the camp that wanted Deadpool to keep the R-rating. I think the spirit of the films, especially the first one, definitely benefited from it. I mean, the first film had Stan Lee’s cameo as a DJ in a strip club, for God’s sakes! With bare breasts flopping all over the place. There were even sex scenes (one even involving a strap on… worn by the woman) in the first film! Deadpool 2 may not have that much nudity (it does have the “baby penis” scene but that’s all I can remember) but it does keep the violence and gore rather high. Wade Wilson gets broken in half a couple of times, once during the prison riot scene and when the Juggernaut literally breaks him in two. Still, both films earned their R-ratings and, well, the movies just work!
I honestly should be so against a PG-13 version of Deadpool 2 and, in truth, I would be… if they hadn’t already released the “original” R-rated version. Heck, they even gave us a “super duper” cut that’s out on home video! So, why would I, a person that really liked the way Deadpool 2 turned out, be enthusiastic about the possibility that Fox is making a toned down version of the film?
Well, I do have a weird reason for that… but I like to first talk about this being forced by Disney. A lot of people are speculating that The House of Mouse is behind all of this. It’s been speculated that they ordered this so they can make more money or to fold Deadpool into the Marvel fold as early as possible. I understand the idea behind this because the time does sink up with Disney finally purchasing Fox. But it seems highly unlikely because that would mean rushing out a product that would sully Deadpool’s box office legacy. Rather, I believe making a PG-13 version of Deadpool 2 was already planned out months earlier, pretty much while the R-rated version was being edited.
I already mentioned that the second film didn’t have all the naked boobs and sex scenes and I’m pretty sure that was all intentional so they wouldn’t need to splice out all that footage. Deadpool’s potty mouth would be incredibly easy to edit. They probably did several takes, with Ryan Reynolds and company saying funny things, some of them that wouldn’t warrant a “for adults only” rating. Besides, if none of them aren’t clean enough for the kids, all they would need to do is get Ryan Reynolds into a recording booth and just spout out new dialogue. I mean, it worked so well for the PG-13 trailers of Deadpool before! They were so good, some idiots wanted a PG-13 version!
But what about the violence and gore? Well, this is precisely why I’m really curious what Disney/Fox will do to excise the blood, guts and extremities that were spilled, sprayed and pulled apart throughout the film! I don’t think they’ll just cut out the scenes with the violence. What they’ll probably do is film totally new scenes to replace the ones that are too violent for the children! And I don’t mean they’ll re-film the bloody action to make them appropriate for children. No, they’ll definitely have to be more creative than that while winking at the audience regarding all the stuff they cut out.
I’m expecting things like Ryan Reynolds in full Deadpool regale coming out and then covering up the violence with his hands. Maybe he’ll even make a quip or two saying that he can’t show you what’s happening because Disney said so, referencing the buyout. Or maybe they’ll cut to a total non-sequitur scene with Deadpool doing some skit, like talking to Fred Savage in bed and just giving him the details about how brutal the fight was and he doesn’t have to know all the gory details… which is what Ryan Reynolds’ Twitter image is hinting at! In other words, I reckon Deadpool will break the fourth wall so he can explain to the audience that, well, there was some violent content here before but they had to remove all of it to make the PG version!
This would really be hilarious if they did it this way. They’ll be really self-aware about everything and flat-out inform the audience this isn’t the “true” version of Deadpool. They’ll be upfront with letting you know you’re watching the edited film. In retrospect, there aren’t that many horrible acts of violence in Deadpool 2. The entire convoy rescue sequence can be shown virtually intact with maybe a few cuts to when the X-Force members meets their untimely (and hilarious) demises. The final action scene where Russell/Firefist and Juggernaut attack the Essex house is actually very tame in retrospect.
But some scenes, like the one where Deadpool gets ripped in half by Juggernaut, will have to be cut out using the techniques I mentioned. I will be on the edge of my seat seeing what Deadpool will do to make the more violent scenes more suited for children. I actually have no idea if they’ll keep how Deadpool takes his coke since I’m not totally sure if heroes taking illegal substances is grounds for an R-rating… I guess they can say he’s just eating a bag of powered sugar? That’s funny, right?
Will the PG-13 version of Deadpool 2 be better than the original R-rated one? Most probably not. However, I am super curious what a more child friendly version would be like. If they do it in incredibly creative ways, I’ll go and watch it… but don’t get me wrong! I hope Disney doesn’t order the permanent neutering of Deadpool because they’ll be taking away something that made the films so fantastic in the first place. I still want The Merc with a Mouth’s film to be as gory as they can possibly be in the future because, hey, we kind of need an R-rated superhero these days.
What are your thoughts on a possible “kid friendly” version of Deadpool 2? Let me know in the comments section below!