David Ayer’s Suicide Squad and James Gunn’s The Suicide Squad share DNA and some characters but that’s as far as the similarities go. This is a Tale of Two Squads with five fascinating facts about each film
With James Gunn’s ‘The Suicide Squad’ coming out imminently it’s time to take a look back at the original film which was released 5 years ago. Here are 5 Fascinating Film Facts about 2016s David Ayer directed ‘Suicide Squad’:
1. The film we saw in cinemas was heavily edited with numerous re-shoots and changes made to the film after it was first screened for test audiences. David Ayer has stated that extensive amounts of his film was left on the cutting room floor revealing that the entire first 40 minutes of the film was cut. This has led to both Ayer himself and a number of fans asking for an ‘Ayer Cut’ of Suicide Squad be released much in the same way that Zack Snyder’s Justice League was released after a long fan campaign. Despite this Warner executives have so far resisted stating that there are no plans to release Ayer’s original version of the film.
2. Following on from this fresh off an Oscar winning performance in the film Dallas Buyers Club Jared Leto was cast in the iconic role of The Joker in the film. Despite his initial look dividing fan opinion his portrayal was anticipated once it was revealed by fellow cast members how fully he had immersed himself into the role. He was featured heavily in promotion for the film and there was an expectation that he would be one of the main characters in the film as was the original expectation however he featured for only TEN minutes total screen time in the final released version of the film.
See Jared Leto’s latest transformation in the trailer for House of Gucci here
3. Touching further on how Leto immersed himself into the role of The Joker he wouldn’t break out of character on set even when he wasn’t filming. He sent the other actors and film crew Joker type gifts to match the character’s twisted persona, gifts including used condoms, a live rat, a dead hog, bullets, and even anal beads. Fellow cast member Scott Eastwood has said that Leto’s behaviour scared him at times and Will smith mentioned that he did not meet the real Jared Leto at all whilst filming with him.
4. After filming had been completed members of the film crew and at least 2 of the stars of the film in Joel Kinnaman and Jai Courtney got matching misspelled ‘SKWAD’ tattoos after filming in a sign of solidarity and kinship. The tattoos were actually applied by Margot Robbie and Will Smith!
5. Speaking of Joel Kinnaman his role as Rick Flag was originally going to be performed by Tom Hardy who had signed up to the film but dropped out to shoot The Revenant with Leonardo di Caprio instead
We’ve had a look at the past let’s take a look to the future with another 5 Fascinating Film Facts but this time about the just released James Gunn directed The Suicide Squad:
Read The Suicide Squad review here
1. Three cast members from the first film reprise their roles in the follow up with Joel Kinnaman as Rick Flag, Jai Courtney as Captain Boomerang and Viola Davis as Amanda Waller. Idris Elba was initially hired to play Deadshot who was played by Will Smith in the first film however the decision was subsequently made to make him a completely new character (Bloodsport) for this film.
2. The movie is described by Gunn as a “war movie action comedy”. The decision to not name the film ‘Suicide Squad 2’ was made as it is not a sequel but a reboot of the first film despite a few characters returning.
3. Wrestler John Cena plays the role of Peacemaker in the film. James Gunn confirmed that he wanted another (former) wrestler in Dave Bautista (who he worked with whilst directing Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy) to play the character but he passed on the chance to work with Zack Snyder on Army of the Dead (review) instead.
John Cena will reprise the role of Peacemaker in a series on HBO Max but Gunn hasn’t confirmed where in the chronology the series lies meaning that Peacemaker is not guaranteed to survive this film. If Bautista had accepted the role he would have been one of a select handful of actors to star in both a DC and a Marvel film a list which includes Michael Rooker who stars in both Guardians of the Galaxy and The Suicide Squad.
4. Speaking of DC and Marvel – James Gunn becomes only the fourth director to direct both a DC and Marvel film. The other 3 are Stephen Norrington who directed Blade and The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, Bryan Singer who directed Superman Returns and 4 X-Men films and Joss Whedon who directed 2 Avengers films and Justice League.
5. James Gunn recently revealed that for a long time he had no idea what to call the film. He stated that he didn’t want to give the film a long, convoluted title and that the film was called ‘Dogs of War’ for a while. When he wrote the first draft of the script he put ‘The Suicide Squad’ on there as a joke and the studio loved it so the name stuck.