The very R-rated “Deadpool 2” with Ryan Reynolds is getting a more teen-friendly re-cut just in time for Christmas – and this time it’ll include Fred Savage.
“Once Upon A Deadpool” seems to be the brainchild of the impending Disney-Fox merger with the “Deadpool 2” studio looking to cater to some more of the family-friendly offerings Disney has built its reputation on. The new re-cut film will be released on Dec. 12 and looks to capitalize on young teens who are off school for Christmas break.
Editing “Deadpool 2” footage to reduce the violence and coarse language to meet the PG-13 rating threshold, “Once Upon A Deadpool” also features new scenes with Reynolds filmed for context in framing the story – all recorded guerrilla-style in a single day of shooting. The new version will be approximately three minutes shorter than the R-rated version’s run-time.
And with the holidays just around the corner, there’s also a charity aspect to the new holiday release.
“Because it’s the season of giving, we will also be giving $1 for every ticket sold to F*** Cancer, which will be renamed Fudge Cancer just for this limited time ad campaign,” Reynolds tells Deadline, adding a more family-friendly version of the foul-mouthed superhero movie has been talked about for a while. “Fox has been asking for a PG-13 basically since the start in 2006. I’ve said no since 2006. Now, this one time, I said ‘Yes’ on two conditions. First, a portion of the proceeds had to go to charity. Second, I wanted to kidnap Fred Savage. The second condition took some explaining…”
Though Reynolds didn’t technically kidnap Savage for “Once Upon A Deadpool”, the former “Wonder Years” star did agree to help the Canadian actor out.
Just as “The Princess Bride” begins with a young Savage getting a bedtime story read to him, so too will “Once Upon A Deadpool” which will use the actor’s scenes to help set-up the edited story. While Fox declined to get specific about Savage’s scenes, the studio reveals the former child star filmed eight scenes that will be used as interstitial framing devices within the new movie.
For his part, Savage is happy to oblige the film’s charitable goals: “While my participation in this film was anything but voluntary, I am happy to learn that Fudge Cancer will be the beneficiary of this shameless cash grab.”
The last time a prominent R-rated film received a more parent-friendly cut was 1977’s “Saturday Night Fever” which got a PG-rated re-cut in 1979, grossing an additional $8.9 million at the box office and paving the way for the PG sequel “Stayin’ Alive” in 1983. Reynolds sees this “Saturday Night Fever” connection as a good omen for “Once Upon A Deadpool”.
“Eighty per cent of ‘Deadpool 3’ takes place at a 1970s disco so it only makes sense we’d find a connection to ‘Saturday Night Fever’,” he jokes. “Plus, Deadpool loves ‘Stayin’ Alive’. It’s literally his only superpower.”