How Ryan Reynolds is being redeemed as a superhero

Ryan Reynolds hit a bit of a career plateau in recent years. His smarminess and sarcasm was endearing as his career skyrocketed and he appeared in lots of comedies of both the buddy (Van Wilder) and romantic (The Proposal) variety. But a bunch of dud films, like Green Lantern, and general career competition from Bradley Cooper caused him to endure a professional lull around 2011. He married and divorced Scarlett Johansson and then married and procreated with Blake Lively, and that was about all anyone talked about. Now that the actor is playing the titular character in Deadpool, set to debut in February 2016. Reynolds is all in and redeeming and reinventing himself by portraying a superhero the right way. This role "suits" him on many levels. It's also ironic that he's reviving his career with a comic book character, since a comic book character seemed to kick off his downward trend.

He Dressed Up As His Character For Halloween

Reynolds donned his Deadpool costume and stayed in-character while hanging out with (and profanely ripping on) a bunch of kids dressed as X-Men on Halloween. They busted his chops and the actor never broke with the role. It was hilarious and showed Reynolds in a new light—one where he doesn't take himself too seriously. He and Lively didn't reveal their daughter's name after her birth, acting like it was classified information and a matter of national security, which was annoying and got pretty old pretty quick. This video brought Reynolds back down to earth and made him likeable again.

Deadpool Isn't An Easy Role But Reynolds Relishes It

For years, the Deadpool movie was on hold and it seemed like that would be its permanent status…until test footage leaked and the Internet went berserk over it, essentially fasttracking the all but dead film into production. Reynolds has wanted to play the role forever and told Entertainment Weekly that he got what he wanted thanks to the leaker's actions. He was so thrilled that he wanted to smooch the leaker for their role in engineering the film. Reynolds said he would do a "full on the mouth, sloppy, with tongue, for two straight ­minutes on live television — without commercial interruption. And then I'll buy you dinner at Red Lobster, at least, and dessert." Reynolds really knows how to say "thanks" with the same panache as this character.

The Character Really Means A Lot To Him

Deadpool is a motormouth and witty and it feels like the role that Reynolds was born to play. His face is obscured by his mask, so we don't see Reynolds, the handsome actor. Instead, we hear his deadpan, impeccably timed wit. Reynolds is so connected to the character that he took the costume after production wrapped. He told MSN, "I loved wearing it and I have run away with one. I'll probably get into trouble for saying that, but I've waited ten years to do this movie so I'm leaving with a f***ing suit." Clearly, his level of investment is serious and it's a passion project. We want to see it based on the fact that he cares so much that he kept the costume.

He Is Fixing The Mistakes Of Past Representations Of The Character

Deadpool was briefly in the X-Men Origins: Wolverine, and Reynolds admits that the filmmakers didn't do the character justice, so this film will right the wrong. He told EW, "Deadpool appearing in Origins is not the Deadpool we are representing in this film, in any way shape or form. We didn't quite get Deadpool right, so this is kind of an opportunity to get the most authentic version possible on the screen." After a bunch of "meh" roles, the actor has sunk his teeth into this one and truly cares about the integrity of the character. It will likely translate on screen and make for an entertaining film in a day and age when comic book films are ubiquitous and are as visually fabulous as they are formulaic.

A Different Sort Of Superhero

Deadpool is an antihero in a sea of blockbuster superhero movies. As the actor told EW, "I love that it's dark and twisted and rated-R and nasty and you get to do all these things that these gigantic comic book properties can't necessarily do." So kudos to Reynolds for turning the genre on its ear, gleefully so. He's taking risks and you can't help but cosign that. He is invested and it's endearing.

He Is Back To Being Known As An Actor

Playing a superhero is allowing Reynolds' career to be the topic of conversation, as opposed to his relationships and his romances. The focus has shifted back to his work and that has to be rewarding for him. He can set about fulfilling the promise he showed when he first burst onto the scene. It's no longer about Scar-Jo or Blake and James or even Alanis Morissette, to whom he was once engaged. It's about Deadpool and it's about Ryan Reynolds, Actor Extraordinaire.