With Disney soon to complete its purchase of 20th Century Fox, fans have begun to imagine what the Marvel Cinematic Universe could look like when the X-Men, Fantastic Four, and Deadpool are thrown into the mix.
Deadpool 2 star Karan Soni, who plays taxi driver Dopinder in both of the Ryan Reynolds-fronted superhero films, has also dreamt about this harmonious Marvel future. However, he thinks that if the “Merc With a Mouth” does team up with Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, future Deadpool films should stay true to the franchise’s trend-setting R-rated roots.
“I just can’t imagine us doing [another Deadpool film] that’s not like that, I just can’t imagine that,” Soni tells Yahoo Movies UK while promoting the DVD and Blu-ray release of Deadpool 2.
“Unless that would be like a ‘bit’. If that could be like a fourth-wall-break kind of bit where Deadpool knows he’s being censored, I guess that could be kind of cool. But again, you’re talking to someone who didn’t have the script until the day before filming so I’m the last person to know.”
Avengers: Infinity War was one of the most adult MCU films yet, earning a 12 rating, but that’s about as far as Marvel Studios has dared push it so far. Should Deadpool join the Marvel Cinematic Universe at Disney, Soni hopes the studio doesn’t mess with the winning formula.
“Essentially I just hope that the teams, the writing teams, stay in that same world because they know the voice of the character really well and obviously Ryan’s such a big part of that.”
“But whatever they come up with, and if they would like me to be there then I would happily be there, and I hope [Deadpool] gets a trilogy, that would be great but if not then I’m just happy to have been part of it.”
We also spoke to the 29-year-old actor about how a bigger budget impacted the making of the sequel, whether he considered Dopinder “a stereotype”, and the secrecy involved on set.
Deadpool 2 is available now on digital download, Blu-ray™ and DVD.
Yahoo Movies UK: There’s always a big risk with sequels, with much more pressure from all fronts to deliver, so you must be so happy that everyone has embraced this one the same as the first?
Karan Soni: Yeah, I definitely had all those fears going into it because I don’t often prefer sequels, something always feels off about it always, and went into this experience with low expectations and then remember seeing it at the premiere for the first time and thinking ‘Wait, I think this is actually really good!’.
It’s also nice to know that other people have felt that way, too, so it’s pretty cool.
The sequel adds so many new elements to it that there is always a risk that it will become convoluted and lose it’s originality but writers Rhett Reese, Paul Wernick and Ryan (Reynolds) have balanced everything really well, haven’t they?
I’m good friends with the writers [Paul Wernick and Rhett Rheese] after doing the first movie and have been emailing them about it since we finished the first one but it’s really them and Ryan that should get all the credit for that because all of it is in the script and they worked through all of it and cracked the code and they did a great job.
With the first Deadpool, how aware were you of the character beforehand, where you a fan? Had you seen or heard about this test footage that had been leaked onto the internet before the film finally got a green light from the studio?
No, I didn’t know anything about Deadpool at all. When I got the audition email – these things are very secretive – so the project then was called “Lamb” and they had changed Deadpool’s name in the script to George or something so I had absolutely no idea what it was.
The script said about his red suit lining and I basically got the job and they said what it was and I had no idea what it was but after I got the job, I reverse engineered by way to the test footage, and how long it had been in gestation and then I felt happy in a way that I didn’t know all of that because I may have put a lot more pressure on myself.
Moving onto the second film, did you feel a change in terms of the size of the production as the first one was relatively small compared to other superhero films? Did the film feel different with a new director (David Leitch) at the helm?
Yeah, huge. It felt like a big, big, big movie.
There were many days where I would show up and they may not need you because they were shooting a scene for ten days so they would call me when they needed me whereas with the first one it was more ‘We’re ready to shoot now, we need you to shoot now!’, here it was ‘Have some tea, have some breakfast, maybe in three hours we’ll get you into make-up’ it just felt we had so much more time to make it.
And obviously adding Josh Brolin, who is such an iconic star, it felt like we were adding bigger pieces to it and that was my fear going into it that it might get bogged down with all that stuff. But what I think helps is that the character [Deadpool] is so selfish, he never really wants to save the world and my problem with those bigger movies is that they get so big that you lose the idea of the stakes because all of it is like ‘end of the world’ stuff but with this one the world is doing just fine without his help and it’s just him overcoming his personal demons so that just ends up helping the movie become more personal and feel smaller.”
How surprised, and indeed happy, were you to discover how much Dopinder’s role in the sequel had been expanded upon?
On the first movie, we got physical scripts that weren’t watermarked and it didn’t feel super secretive whereas on this one, I couldn’t even get a script!
I went up to Vancouver for my costume fittings and I didn’t even know what the themes were and I was asking for a script and people kept saying ‘I’m not approved’ and I was shooting in a week and I didn’t know what I was doing.
And then finally, with this very complex internet software I downloaded and got a password so people could see what page I was reading the script on and that was the day before filming. And then I read it and I couldn’t believe it. It was so awesome, and what was cool about it was – with the first one – I just loved the chance to be in something like this as I’d never imagined that I would get to be in something like this, that’s subversive and cool. But with the second one I personally was feeling so happy to come back but also wanted to show a bit more range and show more of my acting skills.
I’d been working a lot, but a lot of people only know me from the first one and part of me was wanting to show other sides of myself and when I read the script it’s kind of what [Dopinder] is feeling too. So it was a happy marriage of the character settling into the groove of working with Deadpool and he’s dying to take on more responsibilities, and as the script was going on I was wanting to show Ryan and everyone else more a side of myself and take on more as well so there was this beautiful parallel with me as an actor.
Did you ever think that the character of Dopinder could be seen as a stereotype or did you feel comfortable that he was in safe hands with the writers, and what they were going to do with him in the two films?
I never felt that when I read it. I wouldn’t have done it if I felt it was offensive in any way. For me, what was unique about it was to see a character like this, in a superhero movie, where the hero is almost an anti-hero in the sense that the Deadpool character is so rude and doesn’t care about anyone and in some ways the audience shouldn’t be rooting for him because he is so selfish.
— Deadpool Movie (@deadpoolmovie) September 14, 2018
What I thought they were trying to do when I read the first movie, was to put him with a character like this who was an immigrant who isn’t picking up on Deadpool and what he is saying exactly as he’s saying it, yet Deadpool – instead of making fun of him which is what you would think he would do as he is kind of an easy target for him – instead he decides to help him and almost become this mentor to him. And that to me was a very endearing thing and I understood why my character was in the film to show a softer side to this grungy character.
Their unique dynamic – that’s what I picked up on and in the second one we get to expand on that and make it an even bigger theme so it was their dynamic together that made it interesting.
And surprisingly when people come up to me and want to talk about the movie they feel they can relate to Dopinder and many of them aren’t Indian so I think it’s they almost feel that’s what their relationship with Deadpool would be like if he was a real person.
Deadpool 2 is available now on digital download, Blu-ray™ and DVD.