Suicide Squad was meant to be the one that changed it all. The cinematic superhero genre was faltering; it needed new blood and perhaps a more nuanced exploration of the concept of what it means to be a hero. Casting Will Smith and Margot Robbie as two of the much loved Suicide Squad (along with a brief turn by Jared Leto as The Joker) was a good move and David Ayer’s film was hoped to a correct the course for the DC comics cinematic universe.
It was not to be, and the film fell short of expectations. Since its release the sequel has, however, never been in doubt, with a number of directors looking to get their hands on the not-so-merry band of anti-heroes. It with surprise then that we heard the news from io9 that DC have hoisted Guardians of the Galaxy director James Gunn to revamp their Suicide Squad franchise. Gunn is set to write, and possibly direct the film, which will be a new approach to the source material.
Back in January we spoke to Joel Kinnaman (Rick Flag) during the press tour for Netflix’s Altered Carbon, and he confirmed that they had still not received a script, but that all the key players were working on it.
Today’s news tells us a little about how the work has progressed. The first film was uneven, disappointing for some fans though some praised its decision to try and darken up the primary-coloured wash of the comic book movie genre. Now we’ve had Deadpool, Logan, and there’s the forthcoming Joker movie with Joaquin Phoenix and other adult-pivoted offerings, and the superhero movie sphere is slightly more layered that it was a few years ago.
Following the news of James Gunn’s firing much was made of the strange decision by Marvel to let one of their crown jewels go. We spoke to Draxman Dave Bautista following the news.
Bautista himself has perhaps been the most vocal of the Guardians cast to stand up for Gunn following the dismissal. Keeping to form he was one of the first to congratulate the director once the news broke, with his typically enthusiastic response. He tweeted:
Where do I sign up! James Gunn Boards ‘Suicide Squad 2’ To Write And Possibly Direct – Deadline https://t.co/OwdDbAm1Ks
— Dave Bautista (@DaveBautista) October 9, 2018
Gunn has not yet been confirmed as the director for the project, however with GOTG Vol. 3 now up in the air his schedule may well allow for a commitment behind the camera for the superhero sequel. The project certainly needs a new direction, and with Birds of Prey (the Harley Quinn fronted Suicide Squad spin off) scheduled to be released first Gunn’s Suicide Squad may well be part of a much-needed new era for the DCEU.