If there’s one thing that Fox’s recent shuffling of their release slate and the subsequent delays to both ‘X-Men: Dark Phoenix’ and ‘New Mutants’ makes clear, it’s that the studio’s plans for their ‘X-Men’ films are constantly in flux. And that’s just for the ones they’ve already made!
As Fox has worked to expand the X-Men’s cinematic presence over the last several years, one of their longest standing goals has been to bring X-Force to the big screen. Introduced in 1991 by Rob Liefeld, X-Force has taken many forms over the years, but the team’s various iterations have all been defined by a willingness to take a more aggressive and militant approach than the X-Men (of which they are an offshoot). And now, with the release of ‘Deadpool 2‘ next month and a full-blown ‘X-Force’ movie set to film this fall, that goal is about to be realized.
And yet, it almost took a very different form. Prior to the release (and, more importantly, the success) of ‘Deadpool’, the plan was to introduce ‘X-Force’ in their own film. Speaking to CinemaBlend, Jeff Wadlow who had been tasked with writing the ‘X-Force’ script before plans changed has explained just what became of that project and offered a sense of what form it might have taken.
“I wrote a draft and they really liked it. They just reached a critical moment, where they were going to make ‘Deadpool’ or ‘X-Force’. I’ve always loved Deadpool and I tried to rehabilitate him in my ‘X-Force’ movie because, like the rest of the fans, I felt like they totally screwed it up in ‘X-Men: Origins’. I had actually been talking to Ryan Reynolds about playing him in my ‘X-Force’ movie, but my ‘X-Force’ movie was much more focused on Cable and the New Mutants becoming this paramilitary unit. So, Fox was trying to decide whether they were going to do the ‘Deadpool’ solo movie or my ‘X-Force’ movie. Fortunately, they picked the ‘Deadpool’ solo movie because it’s great. Fortunately for the world, I should say, but unfortunately for me. But, I have no complaints about the process. I’m a huge fan of Ryan’s and I loved the ‘Deadpool’ solo movie. I’m super excited for ‘Deadpool 2’. It’s a little bit of a bummer, but that’s life in the big leagues.”
Wadlow’s version of ‘X-Force’ seems to have had more in common with the team’s comic book counterpart, most notably in its origins. In the comics, X-Force was first formed by the New Mutants – at the time, the junior “class” of mutants – who left the X-Men behind to forge their own path.
Following their debut in ‘Deadpool 2’, X-Force will return in a spinoff of their very own. That film is set to film in October of this year, with Drew Goddard attached to write and direct.