'Deadpool' Director on His Franchise Exit and 'Terminator' Future

Asked if the world can thank Ryan Reynolds for his upcoming James Cameron collaboration, Tim Miller responds with joking reluctance: "Yeah, if you want."

Deadpool fans were shocked when director Tim Miller exited the sequel in October, but the filmmaker admits there was a sense of relief when he left.

Insiders told THR at the time that Miller exited the project over creative differences with star Ryan Reynolds, and when asked if we can thank Reynolds for Miller's upcoming Terminator movie, the director responded with joking reluctance, "Yeah, if you want."

"I felt like there was more stories to tell there, but I’m happy that somebody else is telling them," Miller said of Deadpool 2 during a conversation moderated by The Hollywood Reporter's editorial director Matthew Belloni that is the centerpiece for this week's THR cover story. "There was a sense of relief in that I get to do something new versus Deadpool 2. I think it would’ve been a great movie, but it was also going to be a continuation of what we had done. This really gave me a chance to do something new."

Miller, who is working with producer James Cameron on the Terminator movie, also addressed why he chose to direct another film based on a pre-existing property following Deadpool. The film will follow Cameron's Terminator (1984) and Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991), while ignoring the three films Cameron was not involved with.

"I feel like there was so much more to be done with these characters," he said of the Terminator franchise. "I mean, I wanted to make Deadpool 2. I was going to do that, until I wasn't. So, there was that, which took up about seven months of my time. But even then, David [Ellison, who has the rights to the Terminator franchise] and I were talking, like after Deadpool 2, it was going to be this [Terminator]."

Cameron, who is currently filming the first of his four Avatar sequels, revealed that he read Miller's Deadpool script several years before the Fox film got made. The risky R-rated movie needed all the help it could get to score a green light, and Cameron did what he could after reading the script.

"And the next day, he's like: 'Oh, they should be making this movie. I’m going to call somebody. Don’t tell anybody, but I’m going to call somebody,'" said Miller.

Deadpool was a big hit when it was released in February 2016, going on to be the top-grossing X-Men film of all time with more than $783 million worldwide.

David Leitch is directing 2018's Deadpool 2, which features series newcomer Josh Brolin as Cable. For his part, Reynolds has said of Miller, "I'm sad to see him off the film. Tim's brilliant and nobody worked harder on Deadpool than he did."

For more from Cameron and Miller, read THR's cover story here, or watch the full conversation below: