Fox’s Deadpool 2 should recast and replace T.J. Miller as Weasel in the wake of sexual assault allegations made against the actor. Ever since The New York Times published a piece exposing decades worth of sexual misconduct accusations against producer Harvey Weinstein, the landscape of such allegations surfacing in Hollywood has changed. We’re in an unprecedented moment where victims of sexual harassment and assault feel more comfortable coming forward than ever before. Whereas powerful men in the industry would have been able to shake off these kinds of allegations after a certain amount of time even just a year ago, those who have faced accusations since Weinstein are additionally facing career consequences.
Weinstein was fired from The Weinstein Company, the production company he co-founded, in addition to being expelled from organizations like the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Louis C.K.’s film I Love You, Daddy was dropped by its distributor and he was removed from a number of projects after he admitted to exposing himself to multiple women. In one of the more high-profile instances, Kevin Spacey was removed from All the Money in the World by director Ridley Scott after the actor was accused of sexually assaulting 14-year-old Anthony Rapp when Spacey was 26.
In recent weeks, Deadpool actor T.J. Miller was accused of sexual assault, which he and his wife, Kate, denied in a joint statement. Shortly after the accusations were made public, Comedy Central cancelled Miller’s puppet talk show series The Gorburger Show – though a representative for the network later said it had nothing to do with the allegations. In terms of whether the actor would be removed from the 20th Century Fox X-Men universe sequel, though, producer Lauren Shuler Donner revealed Miller won’t be recast for Deadpool 2.
Donner did leave the door open for Fox, or new studio Disney (which acquired a number of 21st Century Fox assets late last year, including the company’s film studio), to potentially write out or recast Miller’s Weasel in future Deadpool movies. But, it’s not too late to recast T.J. Miller in Deadpool 2.
The Reasons To Not Recast Miller
When Donner was asked about recasting Miller for Deadpool 2, she mentioned director David Leitch is in the final stages of editing the film as the reason the actor wouldn’t be recast. As of now, it’s unclear just how big Weasel’s role is in the sequel, which has a script penned by Deadpool scribes Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick, as well as Drew Goddard (Daredevil). Miller said there will be more Weasel in the Deadpool sequel, and teased the character had a storyline with Wade Wilson’s fellow friend Dopinder in early scripts for the film. However, Miller was unclear if the Weasel and Dopinder storyline would be in Deadpool 2, or if it would be cut.
All that’s to say, we don’t know how much of Deadpool 2 would need to be changed in order to replace Miller. And, considering the nature of the Merc with the Mouth, a scene or line would need to be added to poke fun of or add a meta reference to the change. Deadpool is the king of breaking the fourth wall, after all. Given those changes, the film would likely need to go back for reshoots, but Deadpool 2 wrapped in October of last year and additional filming would require additional money. Since the movie is the final stages of editing, it would be costly to replace Miller in Deadpool 2.
Costly and inconvenient reshoots aren’t exactly unheard of in Hollywood, though, especially when studios are dedicated to releasing a movie with the most potential for success. With that said, Fox is in a strange situation. Since Disney is in the process of acquiring 20th Century Fox – and the exact particulars of their deal are unknown – replacing Miller in Deadpool 2 is made more complicated. The nature of the acquisition, which could lead to thousands of layoffs at Fox, may prevent the studio from granting Deadpool 2 the extra budget that would allow the film to recast and replace Miller.
Plus, now that Fox has moved the Deadpool 2 release date forward two weeks, the film has even less time to potentially pull off the replacement. But, is it truly too late to replace Miller as Weasel?