STACK caught up with the actor behind Colossus to talk comic books and the current status of Deadpool 3 ahead of his appearance at Supanova Comic Con & Gaming.
Do you like doing the convention circuit?
Yes, absolutely! Over the last few years I’ve been travelling all over the world when I’m not working, meeting fans and seeing new countries. It’s a beautiful thing to have as a bonus – it’s something so different and it makes life more beautiful.
How were the Australian fans when you were last here?
The fans were amazing; they know everything. They’re so well educated in the pop culture world, and I struggle to answer some of the questions about the new comic books and other characters from X-Men. I’m into comic books, but sometimes I cannot find an answer. I can’t wait to come back and do this class again.
What comics did you read growing up – were you a Marvel or a DC kid?
I’m from Europe, so lots of French and Italian comic books. But then of course you get into the Superman and Batman world – as a kid they’re like the first heroes you meet. After that, you get into Marvel. When I got older, one of my favourite characters was Punisher – and still is – and of course the X-Men. I’m Slavic, so there’s an emotional connection with Colossus as a Russian superhero, and the chance to play him was a dream come true. And as a comic book fan, the great thing about doing these comic cons is that I have the opportunity to meet all my comic book heroes – the writers and artists.
Daniel Cudmore played Colossus in the early X-Men films but you’ve made the role your own.
It was a different time and concept. I’m a fan of those movies, but now it’s a totally different version of the character, in the world made by [Deadpool director] Tim Miller. I think this version is more comic-book-accurate, which was Tim Miller’s intention. He’s become a huge part of the Deadpool universe.
What do you love most about the character?
To me, he’s like a real, original superhero. In a way he’s Marvel’s response to Superman – a Russian version. He’s a father figure and he will always sacrifice himself for a team member or his ideals. He doesn’t curse or kill. He will fight for his friends and believe in them, and he can always see the light at the end of the tunnel. He’s a superhero with the soul of a Russian poet, and that’s rare in the comic book universe.
How would you compare the experience making Deadpool with the sequel?
The budget for Deadpool was low. The beauty of it was Tim Miller’s vision for the movie, and that’s why it became a phenomenon and had an impact on the industry. Nobody expected it would be that much fun. The beauty of that movie is that it reached a wider audience, not just comic book geeks. It was a low-fi movie that nobody expected to be a blockbuster. The sequel is, in a way, a blockbuster and more of a superhero movie, with all these other characters and a different director.
What did you think of the PG version, Once Upon a Deadpool?
Colossus would approve that version over the other one, there’s less swearing! [laughs]. It’s a great way to introduce Deadpool to kids, and when they get older they can see the other version. Deadpool is an R-rated character; he doesn’t fully function in PG versions, so I’m happy that younger kids can now enjoy his jokes – well, some of them.
What’s the latest on a third Deadpool movie or X–Force spin-off?
Disney has got all the kids from the Marvel universe back, and there’s a lot of talking and development going on. I can’t say anything specific, but I have two more movies as Colossus in my contract. The X-Force is something that needs to happen, and of course Deadpool 3. Ryan Reynolds recently said he is working with [writers] Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick on developing the script for Deadpool 3, but until Disney confirms it and we get the green light to announce it, I cannot say anything else.