Deadpool 3’s Shawn Levy Took Inspiration From Star Wars

Lucasfilm’s Kathleen Kennedy with Shawn Levy at the world premiere of Star Wars: The Last Jedi.Photo: esse Grant/Getty Images for Disney (Getty Images)

Unlike a lot of other upcoming movies, Deadpool 3 is still on track to open as scheduled, in May of 2024. In a new interview, director Shawn Levy explains that much of the Ryan Reynolds-Hugh Jackman Marvel movie was already filmed when the SAG-AFTRA strike shut down production. He also dropped in a hint about some specific inspiration he took from a galaxy far, far away.

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In a new “as told to” essay in Esquire Magazine, Levy (whose other credits include Stranger Things and Free Guy) discusses how he brought the spirit of Return of the Jedi—a movie he “went to the theater again and again to see” to Deadpool 3, specifically the scene in which Darth Vader suggests to Luke that if Luke won’t join his Dark Side cause, maybe Leia will. “Suddenly Vader has pushed the wrong button,” Levy remembers. “Luke comes screaming out of the shadows and just goes to town in a light saber battle against Vader. The way that felt: The 40 seconds of stillness from the audience, then the spectacle and emotion, is seared not just in my eyeballs but in my heart.”

This Star Wars fandom and appreciation has another aspect to it because Levy is one of the filmmakers whose name has come up in connection with future Star Wars projects (though not the three announced earlier this year). But before that, fans can look out for “the Jedi moment” he included in Deadpool 3: “I pulled up that scene of Vader and Luke on my phone and restudied how it was photographed, how it was blocked, the framing, the tempo. The keen Star Wars fan will see the shot in my Deadpool movie that was inspired by a moment that I saw in a theater decades ago. That’s a forever memory. And that’s a treasure.”

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