x-force movie

One of the downsides to most of the X-Men movies so far has been the has been the focus on Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine. Sure, Jackman’s take on the adamantium-clawed mutant superhero is one of those vital foundational blocks upon which the entire comic book movie genre has been built, but it’s been a little suffocating. With the exception of X-Men: First Class, most of the films in the series have been Wolverine movies that also happen to feature some other X-Men. His solo films have been a little redundant. 20th Century Fox’s insistence on focusing on one character while avoiding the vast X-Men corner of the Marvel universe and its deep, wild bench of characters has been frustrating.

But with Deadpool about to storm the box office gates this weekend, that looks like it’s about change… and Ryan Reynolds is already talking about an X-Force movie, a project that has seemingly been on life support for a few years.

Speaking with FILMSTARTS (via Collider), the man behind Deadpool’s mask commented on the scope of the X-Men world and how they plan to take advantage of that roster in future sequels… and maybe X-Force:

There’s so much material to mine in just the X-Men universe … In the future, if we’re doing a bunch more Deadpool movies, we’re really going to explore the X-Men a lot. We’ll see. And maybe X-Force — X-Force is my priority. I really want to get that in.

For those unfamiliar with them, X-Force is a completely separate group of mutant superheroes with loose connections to the X-Men. Created by Deadpool masterminds Fabian Nicieza and Rob Liefeld, the mission and purpose of the X-Force has evolved and shifted with the times, but they all have one thing in common: they don’t play quite as nice as the main X-teams and tend to take down their enemies with extreme prejudice. Like with the main X-Men, their roster changes frequently, but characters like Deadpool, Colossus, and Psylocke have been team members at one point or another. And since all of those characters will be appearing on screen between Deadpool and X-Men: Apocalypse, all a film needs to do is introduce original team leader Cable to round up this motley crew and it’s good to go.

The big question about an X-Force movie is whether it will act like a sequel to Deadpool or be its own thing. Deadpool is very much a comedy and that riffs on every superhero trope, a reflection of the character’s frequently comedic comic book adventures. But the X-Force is bigger than Deadpool and some of the best writers and artists have found ways to place the character’s mania into an effective dramatic context. I’m reminded of how Rick Remender and Jerome Opeña managed to maintain the character’s trademark energy while making him a tragic, multi-faceted character in the pages of their Uncanny X-Force run.

At one point, Kick-Ass 2 writer/director Jeff Wadlow was working on X-Force, but the project has been awfully quiet. But with Jackman leaving the X-Men behind and Deadpool about to blow the potential of the cinematic X-Men universe wide open, this feels like the next logical step for everyone involved.

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