SPOILER ALERT: Warning, this article contains references and cameos in Deadpool 2. Proceed at your own risk.
Deadpool 2 opened this weekend and featured a bountiful amount of cameos, including a few surprising X-Men actors and Brad Pitt. You can check out the full cameo and Easter Egg breakdown here. What the film DID NOT feature was a cameo from Marvel legend Stan Lee.
The comic creator has appeared in dozens of Marvel films, including all 20 Marvel Cinematic Universe films, as well as Sony’s Spider-Man trilogy, many of the X-Men movies, and the Fantastic Four films. That’s what makes Lee’s non-cameo in Deadpool 2 so startling.
In the first Deadpool film, Lee was the DJ in the strip club where Vanessa worked. While Stan filmed the cameo off set, not in Vancouver with the rest of the cast, he still filmed it in person and played his role perfectly.
In Deadpool 2, Lee appears in a giant mural during the X-Force flight scene. While this is a beautiful tribute to Lee, it raises the question of why Lee didn’t go into a studio to film something for Deadpool 2 like he did for Deadpool?
Lee likely couldn’t film his cameo for one of three reasons:
First, Lee has been dealing with health issues off and on since his wife’s passing last summer. June Lee, Lee’s wife of 70 years, passed last July. He has since been in and out of the hospital for treatment of pneumonia. Since Deadpool 2 was filming towards the end of summer, it’s possible Lee’s health kept him from filming a cameo.
Second, there have been extensive rumors that Lee has been suffering various forms of elder abuse since June’s death. The Hollywood Reporter shared their speculations and finding on this abuse, which if true, could have easily kept him out of the studio during Deadpool 2’s filming.
Lastly, it could have all come down to scheduling. Lee has reportedly already filmed five cameos for upcoming MCU films. Perhaps these were filmed well in advance in 2017, long before cameras rolled on Deadpool 2. No matter the reason for Lee’s absence in Deadpool 2, we hope to see him back on his feet for future film and television cameos in the future. Excelsior, Stan!
Deadpool 2 is currently in theaters.