Ryan Reynolds has been in a lot of comic book movies, and even by his own estimation, not all of them worked. His most infamous comic book movie was 2011's Green Lantern, which he has routinely lampooned during his tenure as Wade Wilson in the Deadpool franchise. Fans have largely welcomed Reynolds' jump from Hal Jordan to Deadpool, and it turns out that the Canadian actor actually filmed the now-famous Deadpool test footage the weekend Green Lantern opened. During a panel appearance at Las Vegas Comic-Con, Deadpool creator Rob Liefeld explained:
I would go watch that footage at Tim's studio for three years. People forget! That footage was filmed in 2011. Ryan filmed that the weekend Green Lantern came out. I was at Blur Studios. Ryan filmed that the weekend Green Lantern was opening, that's how old that footage is!
The leaked Deadpool test footage has become an iconic element of the modern superhero genre. It created the fan fervor to get the X-Men sub-franchise off the ground, and as Rob Liefeld explained during his recent panel appearance at Las Vegas Comic-Con, that footage is older than some people realize. Ryan Reynolds was hard at work putting that footage together with director Tim Miller at Blur Studios the weekend his ill-fated DC solo movie hit theaters.
This anecdote already adds fuel to the notion that Ryan Reynolds was looking beyond Green Lantern well before the movie flopped. In fact, addressing the film in a recent interview, Reynolds even admitted that he has never actually watched it in its entirety. He has also not shied away from leveling criticism at the movie, noting in other interviews that Green Lantern (unlike something like Deadpool) never managed to carve out a real identity for itself or come to the table with a specific voice that audiences could latch onto and connect with.
The rest, as they say, is history, as Ryan Reynolds has arguably become inextricable from the character of Wade Wilson. Few actors have ever melded with their respective on-screen counterpart in such a profoundly fitting way, and the Deadpool franchise has gone on to become one of the comic book movie genre's most beloved properties. Moreover, the Deadpool franchise has become a box office juggernaut (something Green Lantern ultimately failed to achieve in its run), so the future looks brighter than ever for Reynolds and his time under a mask.