The release date for the eagerly anticipated 'Deadpool 2' has finally been confirmed, with principal photography set to begin this summer. The sequel is set to arrive in 2018 with David Leitch at the helm, and Zazie Beetz and Josh Brolin among the cast.

Ryan Reynolds returns as DeadpoolRyan Reynolds returns as Deadpool

At the weekend, 20th Century Fox revealed a summer premiere date for the Marvel sequel which comes to theatres next year. Brianna Hildebrand, Stefan Kapicic and Ryan Reynolds return to the franchise as Negasonic Teenage Warhead, Colossus and Deadpool respectively, with new cast members having also been announced.

The movie will be directed by stunts expert David Leitch ('Atomic Blonde', 'John Wick'), who takes over from the first movie's Tim Miller. Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick ('Zombieland', 'Life', 'G.I. Joe: Retaliation') return to write the screenplay. 

Leitch was also responsible for directing the 'Deadpool' short movie 'No Good Deed', which aired as something of a teaser to the sequel in March ahead of the release of 'Logan'. The clip saw Deadpool hurriedly trying to change into his superhero costume in a phone booth - in homage to DC's 'Superman' - as a struggle takes place in the street, but emerges too late to save a man from being shot. He compares his costume to that of Wolverine's, and the video also features a cameo from comic book writer Stan Lee. 

Zazie Beetz, an actress best known for her role in Donald Glover's Golden Globe-winning FX show 'Atlanta', joins the cast as expert markswoman and mutant Domino aka Neena Thurman. Meanwhile, Josh Brolin will play her love interest Cable aka Nathan Summers - an interesting development for the actor as it marks his second Marvel Universe venture having previously starred in 'Guardians of the Galaxy' as Thanos (a role which he will reprise in 'Avengers: Infinity War').

More: Read our review of 'Deadpool'

'Deadpool 2' will hit theatres on June 1st 2018.