‘Deadpool’ Success Opens Up R-Rated Comic Book Film Genre

Deadpool has trumped over Risen and The Witch at the North American box office, with CNN reporting that Deadpool brought in more than $55 million at the box office only two days after its release, across more than 3,200 theatres across North America.

Deadpool was always going to be pitted against Risen and The Witch, with Risen being described as a biblical resurrection tale and The Witch involving demons.

After only nine days at the cinemas, Deadpool, led by Ryan Reynolds, had already earned more than $200 million, making it the first R-rated movie in cinema history to reach $200 million in such a short period of time. By now, Deadpool has cleared more than $500 million following its global release.

CNN predicts that Deadpool will become the top R-rated movie in history, a title previously held by The Passion of the Christ, which brought in $611.9 million at the box office. It has even already passed the sizable amount brought in by Fifty Shades of Grey, released in 2015. CNN went as far as predict that Deadpool will earn up to $700 million throughout its full run at the box office.

Chris Aronson, chief of domestic distribution for Fox, spoke about the worldwide cultural phenomenon that is Deadpool.

Deadpool has become a cultural phenomenon with all audiences that is resonating across the globe.”

That Deadpool is set to be the second highest grossing film in the X-Men franchise, which currently contains eight movies. Although this is an impressive achievement, it is made even more so when considering that Deadpool has a hard R-rating, and a February release date.

In the past, it was generally accepted that R-rated comic book movies were unlikely to achieve a huge level of success. Deadpool has broken through this limitation, though, and Forbes notes that Deadpool“is playing like a summer PG-13 popcorn flick.” Somehow it doesn’t seem to matter that the cinema seats are filled with adults only, which seems counterintuitive given how much importance is normally placed on marketing suitable movies directly to children.

Forbes predicts that is new behavior by adult cinema goers highlights a new acceptance in the R-rated comic book movies genre, whereby even mainstream audiences are willing to accept anything, provided it is exquisitely well made.

Other comic book films are already taking Deadpool‘s lead, and Forbes reports that the next solo Wolverine movie is set to also be R-rated. And now, people are wondering just how far screenwriters and directors will go now that they don’t have to be so concerned about ensuring the content fits within the PG-13 limitations. Boundaries are sure to be pushed in the near future, and it is anyone’s guess as to how far they will go.

That being said, Forbes predicts that moviegoers are unlikely to see an R-rated Avengers film in the near future, but says that there are other stories and characters that have been previously pushed aside, as they would have been too difficult to fit within the confines of the PG-13 rating, that can now be brought to life. Given the perfection behind Ryan Reynolds’ Deadpool, though, it is still uncertain whether a lower budget R-rated comic book film could have the same potential to succeed.

There has been some twitter fun for Deadpool fans over the weekend, with Captain America‘s Chris Evans congratulating Deadpool star Ryan Reynolds with the success of the film so far. As it turned out, Iron Man‘s Robert Downey Jr. was none too impressed with the exchange, and broke in with some input of his own.

As Slash Film noted, Robert Downey Jr. delighted Deadpool and Avengers fans by referencing “what is probably the best recurring joke in The Avengers: Age of Ultron” and giving everyone a good laugh in the process.

Unfortunately, Captain America, Iron Man, and Deadpool are unlikely to ever appear in a movie together. The rights to Deadpool are owned by 20th Century Fox, while Marvel Studios holds the rights to Iron Man and Captain America.

[Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images]