Deadpool 3 Is Marvel's Most Important Upcoming Movie — And It's Been Set Up to Fail

New rumors suggest the movie will be more important than anyone expected... or needed.

Ryan Reynolds as Deadpool and Hugh Jackman as Wolverine in 'Deadpool 3'
Marvel Studios

In the four years since Disney finished its acquisition of Fox, Marvel Studios has slowly grown more comfortable with exercising its rights to Fox’s X-Men characters. Patrick Stewart’s Professor X had a cameo in last year’s Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, while Kelsey Grammer recently returned as Beast in the mid-credits scene of The Marvels. Now the studio seems primed to finally bridge the remaining gaps between the Marvel Cinematic Universe and Fox’s X-Men Universe with Deadpool 3.

The highly anticipated superhero film is set to feature both Ryan Reynolds’ Wade Wilson and Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine. If certain reports are to be believed, Deadpool 3 won’t just bring the Merc with a Mouth and his fourth-wall-breaking antics to the MCU, either. The film is rumored to play an important role in setting up the multiversal conflict of Avengers: Secret Wars.

If true, that means Marvel may already be making another huge mistake.

The first two Deadpool movies work because they’re lighthearted, vulgar action comedies.

20th Century Fox

Hollywood insider Daniel Richtman recently claimed Deadpool 3 is shaping up to be one of the most important films of Marvel’s current Multiverse Saga. He additionally reported that the studio is extremely confident in the film’s quality, and that it will do a lot to help set up the events of 2027’s Avengers: Secret Wars. Richtman went on to reveal that Deadpool 3 won’t feature Jonathan Majors’ Kang, but will establish the Time Variance Authority’s wider goals and set up the eventual conclusion of the Multiverse Saga.

It’s worth noting that Deadpool 3 is currently the only film Marvel has slated to be released next year, which lends some credence to Richtman’s claims. Would Marvel be happy with Deadpool 3 being its only 2024 film if it didn’t set up the future of the MCU? The studio’s decision to place so much importance on it nonetheless suggests that it’s forgotten what made the first two Deadpool films so fun, and the conditions in which a character like Wade Wilson actually thrives.

Deadpool is an agent of chaos. He’s not someone meant to reshape entire universes or play major roles in massive, overarching comic book stories. He’s a fourth-wall-breaking, tongue-in-cheek anti-hero designed to poke fun at the superhero genre — not carry the weight of it on his shoulders. The first two Deadpool films understand that. For all their X-Men Easter eggs, they’re little more than light, breezy action comedies that don’t ultimately matter much. They only work because they exist free of the narrative requirements that seem to drag down so many other modern comic book movies.

Has Deadpool 3 already been doomed to fall short of its predecessors?

20th Century Fox

When Deadpool 3 was announced, many fans assumed it could be one of the few MCU films free of the demands of the franchise’s all-encompassing Multiverse Saga. The previous Deadpool movies may have existed in the same universe as Fox’s X-Men titles, but they never truly affected or interacted with the other films. That meant they could make as many canon-breaking jokes as they wanted.

Rather than handling Deadpool 3 the same way, Marvel seems intent on making the film bring certain characters into the MCU and lay the foundation for everything that comes after it. We’ll have to wait until the movie hits theaters next year to find out whether that was the right decision, but it’s the kind of choice that could very well rob Deadpool 3 of the weightlessness that made its two predecessors so refreshing.

Deadpool 3 is set to hit theaters on July 26, 2024.

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