On Thursday, the studio announced that the movie will hit theaters Feb. 12, 2016. Tim Miller is set to direct the film, with Ryan Reynolds long rumored to star, although no deal is set. (Bets are that he will.)
The beloved Marvel character Deadpool, aka Wade Wilson, is a talkative mercenary with a host of powers, including the ability to heal rapidly. Reynolds played Wilson in 2009’s X-Men Origins: Wolverine, while Scott Adkins played the character of Deadpool after Wilson had transformed.
News of Deadpool‘s release comes weeks after test footage of the project leaked briefly online. The sequence, featuring Reynolds, was shot several years ago, but nevertheless sparked intense conversation on social media.
In a recent interview, Reynolds commented on the leak, suggesting it helped move the process along. “The movie has been in a state of limbo for a while. There was such an overpowering reaction to the footage, you sort of feel like, ‘Oh, so we weren’t crazy for our reasons for loving this character, for loving this role.’ It’s interesting to see the power of the Internet. It’s awe-inspiring, actually,” the actor told the Niagara Falls Review. “And it’s neat that Twitter and Facebook and Instagram can move mountains when used in the right way.”
Reynolds, whose turn as the superhero Green Lantern failed at the box office, has been linked to a potential Deadpool solo movie for years, even before he debuted as the character in X-Men Origins: Wolverine. His interest in the property dates back to 2003.