Deadpool 2 features a same-sex relationship between Negasonic Teenage Warhead (Brianna Hildebrand) and girlfriend Yukio (Shioli Kutsuna) in what GLAAD has called “groundbreaking” and a “first-of-its-kind moment in a wide release superhero film.”
The equality-promoting organization gave Deadpool 2 an official stamp of approval, with GLAAD President and CEO Sarah Kate Ellis praising producers 20th Century Fox for giving “countless moviegoers around the world what they’ve longed to see — LGBTQ superheroes in a relationship who protect the world together.”
“Negasonic and Yukio’s storyline is a milestone in a genre that too often renders LGBTQ people invisible,” Ellis said, “and should send a message to other studios to follow this example of inclusive and smart storytelling.”
“It’s awesome, it’s super awesome,” Hildebrand told Too Fab of GLAAD’s praise of the coupling.
“My dad’s been sending me links like all morning, he’s super stoked aboutt it,” the 21-year-old actress said. “It feels really good, as a member of the LGBTQ community myself, it feels awesome to be paving that path.”
Hildebrand hopes the relationship will help “these things become more normalized in all genres,” the actress said.
She continued: “When I was younger, I was never really a big fan of superheroes or anything, but going to conventions I realized how important they are to people and how empowering they can be and I think it’s really important to be able to see a version of yourself, or someone you can relate to on the screen, being invincible. I hope some kids around the world can see that they can do what they want and see themselves while doing it.”
Ryan Reynolds — who stars as the mouthy mercenary and serves as producer and co-writer on Deadpool 2 — ran the idea past Hildebrand in an email asking “if it would be OK and I was totally onboard,” Hildebrand said.
“I know that when Ryan messaged me about it, the only thing I requested is that it not be made a big deal and so I think that’s part of what makes it so special, it’s just mentioned and it is what it is,” Hildebrand explained. “I hope that fans can appreciate that about it.”
Of the LGBTQ moviegoers adding to Deadpool 2’s massive and record-breaking box office success this weekend, Hildebrand added, “I hope that I do them a justice.”
Hildebrand’s wishes were shared by director David Leitch, who told Yahoo the romance “[wasn’t] a statement we were trying to make. I never really thought of it that way.”
Co-writer Paul Wernick said the queer couple was just “everyday life.”
“We ground Deadpool in real life,” Wernick said. “As outrageous as it is, Deadpool is a very, very grounded movie.” Added co-writer Rhett Reese, “We didn’t want to make too big a deal of it.”
After getting her big break as the punk-rock mutant in Deadpool, Hildebrand made a video with the It Gets Better campaign, in which she shared her own personal experiences.1comments
“Whether you are unsure and afraid or sure and proud of your sexuality, no matter what part off the journey to self-acceptance that you are at, it’s OK, and it really does get better,” Hildebrand told viewers in the video, dated October 2016. “You are exactly where you are supposed to be.”
Deadpool 2 is now playing.