It's hard to think of another movie in recent memory which has earned its R-rating more than Deadpool (opens in new tab). Indeed, it was famously banned from Chinese cinemas (opens in new tab) because it would have been impossible to edit out the offending material while keeping the film intact. As such, it's a little surprising to hear that Deadpool was closer to being PG-13 than we thought:
"Fox asked us at one point 'hey, write the PG-13 version and we can make a decision based off that'", writer (and real hero) Rhett Reese told Den of Geek (opens in new tab). "We did it. We sold our soul for a few minutes [laughs]".
"But interestingly the PG-13 version is not that different from the R version", Reese continued. "The language is reduced, the sexual content is reduced, but most of the action and the structure of the movie and the scenes were all the same. It was up to Fox to look at it and decided ‘should we make this?’ and thankfully - thankfully only in retrospect - they didn’t. It allowed us to circle back with the support of Simon Kinberg a couple of years later and convince them that R was always the best way to go".
While it's intriguing to ponder what a PG-13 Deadpool film might look like, it's clear that Reese is thankful that it never came to that; "We got to put all the old jokes back in, and I think it just infused a sense of freedom in the entire crew and the cast, to push things and to have fun and to not worry about the rating". With Deadpool's surprising box office success, it's safe to say that nobody will be worrying about the rating when the merc with the mouth returns to cinema screens in Deadpool 2 and beyond.
Directed by Tim Miller and starring Ryan Reynolds, Morena Baccarin, Ed Skrein, T.J. Miller and Gina Carano, Deadpool is released on DVD and Blu-Ray on June 13, 2016 in the UK, and it's now available to own in the US.
Images: 20th Century Fox