Green Lantern 2 vs Deadpool: the battle for Ryan Reynolds
Could Warner Bros’ plans for a trilogy of Green Lantern movies potentially derail Ryan Reynolds’ chances of playing Deadpool in Fox’s upcoming X-Men spin-off?
It didn't immediately occur to us earlier this week, and we tip our hats to Filmonic for pointing it out, but one of the motivations for Warner Bros pushing ahead with a script for Green Lantern 2 could be something to do with Fox's planned X-Men spin-off, Deadpool.
Even though the film is nearly a year away, Warner Bros - as it did with Sherlock Holmes, to be fair - is keen to maximise enthusiasm in The Green Lantern, and hired Michael Goldenberg to start work on a sequel script. Rumour suggests, too, that it's actually looking for a trilogy of films.
Green Lantern, of course, stars Ryan Reynolds, taking a front and centre role in a superhero flick for the first time, after his supporting work as Deadpool in X-Men Origins: Wolverine.
Now Reynolds has, since Wolverine came out, been attached to a spin-off movie of Deadpool, of which the latest news is that Robert Rodriguez is being wooed to direct. Deadpool is also being written by Zombieland scribes Paul Wernick and Rhett Reese, and Reynolds is believed to have been involved in the development of the project.
However, he is but one man. And he can't be in two places at once.
Robert Liefeld, the creator of Deadpool, has been Tweeting about the situation, and he's pointed out that "Warner Bros. just trying to protect their investment. They don't want Ryan Reynolds playing Deadpool AND Green Lantern. Interesting 2 watch."
From a Warner Bros point of view, you can clearly see the strategy, if that is, indeed, what it's up to. It'd arguably dilute the impact of Green Lantern in the mass market, if there were two Ryan Reynolds-headlined superhero franchises doing the rounds. And Warner Bros wants to lock the man down, noting that, particularly after his Comic-Con appearance, he's one of the most in-demand actors of the moment.
Let's not forget, too, that there's little love lost between Warner Bros and Fox. Remember the Watchmen saga? That was when Fox took Warner Bros to court, claiming it was entitled, under the terms of an earlier deal, to a slice of the Watchmen cake. And it got to a point, before it was all resolved, that Fox threatened to delay the release of the Watchmen movie, which meant those working on promoting the film had to hold back much of their activity.
That's not to suggest, however, that Warner Bros would commission a new Green Lantern movie just to spite Fox. It's just an interesting ingredient to add to the mix.
The race is on, it seems. Reports suggest that Fox is keen to pin Reynolds down to a date when he could start shooting Deadpool, while Warner Bros is rumoured to be looking for a window of just 18 months between Green Lantern movies, which means production on Green Lantern 2 would take up a sizeable chunk of Reynolds' 2011 schedule.
It's going to be interesting to see how this all resolves itself. In the meantime, you can read more about the story at Filmonic here.