While Professor X and his merry band of mutants are getting ready to save the world from Apocalypse, another corner of the X-Men universe is about to (re-)introduce the badly-behaved, certifiably insane, yellow-speech-bubble-spouting mercenary Deadpool to moviegoers. Ryan Reynolds will reprise his role as Wade Wilson, a gun-for-fire who is left with badly disfigured (but gifted with superhuman healing abilities) after being subjected to a rogue experiment.
Deadpool was stuck in limbo for a long time due to the fact that Twentieth Century Fox was wary about giving a green light to a script that was unapologetically R-rated. After a piece of test footage was leaked to the general public, however, there was an outcry from fans begging to see a feature length film with the character, and Fox finally decided to give director Tim Miller the go-ahead – albeit with a smaller budget than the main X-Men movies.
Starring alongside Reynolds will be Morena Baccarin as Vanessa Carlysle A.K.A. Copycat, Brianna Hildebrand as Negasonic Teenage Warhead, Gina Carano as Angel Dust and T.J. Miller as Weasel. The identity of Game of Thrones actor Ed Skrein’s character had thus far been a mystery, though we noted that in the first set photos from Deadpool he seemed to be playing a bad guy (it was the black leather and the evil smirk that gave it away). Skrein has now confirmed those suspicions with a set photo of his chair, which is emblazoned with his character name: Ajax.
In the comic books Ajax (also known as Francis) is a sadistic enforcer who works for Weapon X, the government research facility where Wade Wilson is experimented upon and ultimately gains his healing abilities – and his frightening new visage. Wilson gleefully antagonizes Ajax and the two of them eventually come to blows, “killing” one another several times. As Deadpool continues filming, we’ll no doubt learn more about Skrein’s version of Ajax – like, for example, who is playing Dr. Killebrew, Ajax’s boss and the geneticist who is responsible for creating Deadpool.
The synopsis for Deadpool indicates that it will be a fairly straightforward revenge story, with Wade Wilson emerging from the Weapon X programme as Deadpool and deciding to use his new identity and abilities to deliver payback to the people who almost destroyed his life. There’s little that Deadpool loves more than firing off banter at his enemies, so it should be fun to see Reynolds and Skrein bouncing off each other – both verbally and physically.
Deadpool arrives in theaters on February 12th, 2016.