There are two gimmicks at work in the two "Deadpool" movies, released in 2016 and 2018 respectively. The first is that Deadpool (Ryan Reynolds) seems to recognize that he's in a superhero movie, and makes numerous metatextual gags about the shortcomings of the genre. In "Deadpool 2," the character comments that, if his plan goes well, the movie itself won't require a third act. He also goes back in time to the events of "X-Men Origins: Wolverine" and kills an alternate-timeline version of himself, fulfilling the bloodlust of fans who hated that version of the character.
The other gimmick is Reynolds himself, a wry, fast-talking comedic actor who delivers flip dialogue and irreverent humor better than anyone. Reynolds also seemed to oversee the films' ad campaigns, and he would appear in character, talking about how he, Deadpool, was now a movie star. All this while his face was completely covered by a superhero mask. Having a sarcastic a-hole in the lead role paired with self-aware meta-humor turned the "Deadpool" movies into satires just as much as they were superhero flicks.
Plans to connect the upcoming "Deadpool 3" to the Marvel Cinematic Universe seem misguided at best, but that's a post for another day.
There is a surprise cameo in "Deadpool 2," an inmate who is left as a mystery throughout the bulk of the film. It seems, hidden deep within the bowels of a prison for superhumans, lurked a mutant so powerful, he had to be enclosed in a solitary vault, unable to move. Later in the film, Deadpool would free said supermutant from his cell revealing him to be the Juggernaut. The Juggernaut was a giant with the superpowers to burst through any wall as long as he worked up a head of steam.
As Reynolds discussed in a 2018 interview with Empire, the actor also played the Juggernaut.
When the Juggernaut appears, Deadpool has a fanboy moment. He loves the Juggernaut and admires the destruction the supervillain can inflict. Just like in the original Marvel comics, the Juggernaut wears a special helmet that allows for his barrelling-through-walls powers to function without injuring him. In "Deadpool 2," the helmet left most of his face obscured. The character also spoke with a deep, artificially modulated voice. Because he stood about nine feet tall, the Juggernaut was visually realized using CGI.
Looking closely, one might be able to make out Ryan Reynolds' features through the mask. The voice is also his. Reynolds explained that his casting was essentially a cost-saving measure:
"'Deadpool 2' is shot for much less money than most superhero movies would be shot for. […] As with every movie, you want to finish on budget and on time, which we did, but just barely. So, we couldn't even afford a voice for Juggernaut. The voice for Juggernaut's me. I just did it as a temp — this sort of Brooklyn brawler kind of voice that we modulated in post — and cranked up and gave it all this bass and reverberation. We didn't settle on that because it was quality. We settled on it because we just didn't have any more budget left to jump in."
The Juggernaut proves to be a formidable foe that requires a lot to render unconscious. Colossus (Stefan Kapičić) has to shove an electrical wire up … a certain part of the Juggernaut's anatomy while Negasonic Teenage Warhead (Brianna Hildebrand) and her girlfriend Yukio (Shioli Kutsuna) push him into a swimming pool using chains and supernatural explosions.
Reynolds, however, hopes he survived.
He'll Be Back
It seems that the reason Deadpool is a big fan of the Juggernaut is because Ryan Reynolds himself is a big fan of the Juggernaut. Of course, because Deadpool is an a-hole, then it stands to reason that the Juggernaut wouldn't be a kind and gentle soul. As such, Reynolds and the filmmakers wanted the supervillain to be particularly nasty. At one point, he rips Deadpool in half. Later, he has no compunction about burning down an orphanage.
Despite being so uniquely dispatched, Reynolds secretly hopes the Juggernaut fled and went on his merry way. The actor said, using a phallic analogy:
"We all loved the Juggernaut. We were all fans of the Juggernaut so that's where all that stuff comes from. Deadpool's just a huge fan and I love the idea that he's just like, 'Never meet your heroes! Because it turns out, he's a bit of a d*** And like a lot of d***s, he's as hard as a rock and causes nothing but problems! […] So, we love the Juggernaut. We love that even at the end he's crawling out of the pool at the very end of the movie and hopefully going to wreak more havoc."
Whether or not the Juggernaut will appear in "Deadpool 3" remains to be seen. That film is currently scheduled for release on November 8, 2024. Hugh Jackman will appear as Wolverine and Shawn Levy ("Real Steel") is directing.
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