‘Suicide Squad’: David Ayer Reflects On Story Issues & More

David Ayer Suicide Squad Joker Story Issues

Yesterday, a fan reached out to Suicide Squad director David Ayer to show their appreciation for the film. Jody, or @PensFanboy on Twitter, exclaimed that they are thankful for the film and even labeled it a masterpiece. A few hours later, Ayer replied with an honest, in-depth few paragraphs outlining his thoughts on the film, as well as the critic’s reaction.

Ayer was also sure to kick the message off by thanking Jody for the praise, as well as acknowledging how controversial the film ended up being:

“Thank you so much. I know it’s a controversial film, I really tried to make something different, with a look and a voice of its own.”

He went on to explain his reasoning behind some of the decisions he made, as well as the harsh reaction some of those decisions received:

“I took inspiration from the insanity of the original comics. Making a movie is a journey, not a straight line. I learned so much. People want what they want, and everyone has a personal vision of how each character should look and walk and talk. If you set out to make a mass appeal movie, it’s easy to end up with vanilla. But I went for it. Nothing hurts more than to pick up a newspaper and see a couple years of your blood, sweat and tears ripped to shreds. The hate game is strong out there.”

Not forgetting the positives, Ayer went on to talk about the commercial success of the film. Let’s not forget that domestically Suicide Squad pocketed $325m for Warner Bros, in addition to the $420m international box office total. Also, fans generally enjoyed the portrayal of most of the characters which is, of course, a good thing for the DCEU going forward:

“The movie was wildly successful commercially. And the world got introduced into some very cool characters in the DC Universe. And that success is due exactly to the wonder and power of DC, of it’s characters.”

When it comes down to it, though, Ayer admits there are a few things he would have done differently and that he just has to learn from his mistakes. He also put the nail in the coffin of any ‘extended Joker cut’ rumors that are still floating around.

“Would I do a lot of things different? Yep, for sure. 

“Wish I had a time machine. I’d make Joker the main villain and engineer a more grounded story. I have to take the good and bad and learn from it. I love making movies and I love DC. I’m a High School dropout and used to paint houses for a living. I’m lucky to have the job I have. I have to five the characters stories and plots they deserve next time. Real talk.”

“(And no, there isn’t a secret edit of the film with a bunch of Joker scenes hidden in a salt mine somewhere.)”

Suicide Squad: Extended Cut is now available on Digital HD and in stores on DVD, Blu-Ray and 3D Blu-Ray.

Source: Twitter

Joe Hart

Joe Hart

Freelance writer from Essex, England. "One batch, two batch, penny and dime."

  • Darthmanwe

    “Wish I had a time machine. I’d make Joker the main villain and engineer a more grounded story.”

    Well, at least he learned from the mistake. Although, everyone and their grandmother who knew DC kept saying Joker should be main villain or not at all in the movie from day 1, for months, so that’s not saying much.

    Here’s to hoping that Gotham city sirens or whatever its called will have these lessons built into it from the get-go.

  • Marquis de Sade

    “(And no, there isn’t a secret edit of the film with a bunch of Joker scenes hidden in a salt mine somewhere.)”

    …much to the chagrin of sammy-rai.

    • Axxell

      Poor Sammy still clinging on to the idea that WB are an “auteur studio”…These comments just crushed that fantasy…

      • Marquis DC Sade

        What are you even talking about dip sh*t? Ayer had influence over this production on almost every level…story, costume design, visual aesthetic, soundtrack. Do you even know what an auteur is? If anything this, along with the extended cut, further proves that there was no superior cut of the film that WB “meddled” with. Love it or hate it, it was Ayer’s film.

        • Chris W

          Doubtful. They reshot to make a tonal shift because BvS was “too dark”.

          The only thing these comments confirm is that Ayer is not an idiot like Trank who will commit career suicide by throwing the studio under the bus.

          Ayer likes the studio system, and he’s smart enough to know how to stay in it.

          • Marquis DC Sade

            Ok, but even if we go with the rumor that WB ordered reshoots to alter the tone against Ayer’s wishes…it was the smart play. The movie probably wouldn’t have made anywhere close to 750 mil if it was a downer.

          • Chris W

            I personally disagree. Dark or not, if these dc/marvel properties are good, people will come out. The Marvel/DC logo is an automatic open these days. And if the film is well made, it will have legs and be universally loved.

            People didn’t dislike BvS because it was “dark”. It just had tons of editing issues, and some of the decisions made(ie. Lex Luthor depiction) were very divisive, while others(Martha) were dumb. It had nothing to do with tone.

          • Marquis DC Sade

            I agree tone shouldn’t be an issue, but if you look through the majority of BvS reviews, tone was definitely dominating the conversation.

            Then they did that JL set visit to assure these entertainment journalists that it would be more “fun” and “lighthearted” and they all came back with their minds at ease even though they knew nothing about the story. It’s silly that that should be an issue, but unfortunately these days it is.

          • Chris W

            Maybe, but I just attribute that to herd mentality. The lowest common denominator likes to pile on to the popular sentiment. “dc too dark”, “marvel is for kids”, “michael bay is a terrible director”, etc. Most people don’t have any substantive reasoning for those opinions.

          • Marquis de Sade

            Well you gotta admit that bvs’s “WOE IS ME” darker than dark tone as portrayed by both bats’ n’ supes bordered on parody.

          • Chris W

            Ya for sure. I blame the writing and editing though; especially in the theatrical cut. The writers didn’t effectively create a believable reason to portray them in that light. And in the theatrical cut, Clark had zero motivation because the cut it all out. That’s why it seemed silly at times. To me at least.

        • Axxell

          …and yet he’s here saying the main villain should’ve been a completely different person if he could change it…notice he doesn’t talk about going back and giving Enchantress more depth or fixing her in any way…

      • Marquis de Sade

        Yeah, sammy-rai’s Quixotic-Like deference to the reality that dceu (thus far) is a monumental artistic joke is downright entertaining.

  • In Brightest Day

    If only making a gyrating special effect the villain over Leto’s terrible Joker would have saved this utter disaster.

    • SAMURAI36

      Ah yes, the DC hater. Oddly enough, people LOVED Leto’s Joker, so that’s one more wrong thing you’ve said in recent times.

      • In Brightest Day

        Sigh, yes, that’s me, the “DC hater” who watches Justice League on Netflix constantly, thinks the Nolan Bat films are the best comic book movies ever, and who has seen every episode of the Arrowverse. But that doesn’t matter, since I don’t blindly love every piece of trash they put out, HATERRRRRR

        Let’s just say his performance divided viewers and leave it at that. You’ll notice I made no reference to other people’s feelings about Leto, but it’s disingenuous to pretend he was universally beloved.

        • SAMURAI36

          Sigh, yes, that’s me, the “DC hater” who watches Justice League on Netflix constantly, thinks the Nolan Bat films are the best comic book movies ever, and who has seen every episode of the Arrowverse. But that doesn’t matter, since I don’t blindly love every piece of trash they put out, HATERRRRRR

          So then, it would be more apropos to label you a DCEU hater?

          notice I made no reference to other people’s feelings about Leto, but it’s disingenuous to pretend he was universally beloved.

          Just because something is not “universally loved”, does not mean that it was not mostly liked. You should face the facts, that you are in the gross minority of people that did not like Leto’s Joker.

  • razorstar90

    The narrative of the DCEU is “We’ll do better next time” then next time comes around and it’s even worse than the first. Then once again they say “We listened to the fans and I promise next time will be better” That’s what happen after MOS, it’s what happened after BvS, and now SS.

    The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. The DCEU is 0-3 in the movie pile. Should we really expect WW and JL to be any different? WW has a shot, I’ll give you that. But JL is DOA.

    • SAMURAI36

      There you go, talking retarded as usual.

      • razorstar90

        So all the DCEU directors, actors, executives, and writers saying loudly “Justice League is going to be fun, the movie is going to fun don’t worry it’s nothing like BvS” is just in my imagination.

        BvS was a reaction to the poor reception of MOS. The entire JL coverage is trying to convince people it’s not going to be like BvS. Like when they sent for all the bloggers and reviewers that hated the movie to the set to basically say “Hey we’ve heard you and we are fixing it”

        All this talk around the movie being “course corrected” is all in my mind. Geoff Johns doing an interview literally saying that they are refocusing the entire universe on hope and optimism is just in my head?

        Dude sit down. I’m right here. Every DCEU movie is has gotten worse reviews than the last. Will WW be the game changer? Who knows

        • SAMURAI36

          What I find hilarious, is that you always find a way to imagine up everything except the facts.

          How many times have I had to REMIND you, that Chris Terrio (writer of JL) said that JL would be a lighter film A FULL YEAR before BVS was even released?

          I’m not gonna bother to post the link to this, because it’s easily researchable, and you need to do the work for yourself to find it.

          This is not news. At least, not NEW news, anyway. It’s just that because of your brain dysfunction, that you choose not to retain this (and other) info, whenever it suits your anti-DC rhetoric.

          Luckily, you have me to steer you back on the right path. Now, I’m sure you’ll be back in about a week or so, when you wander your way back here, to say something else completely asinine.

          • razorstar90

            “In the past, I think the studio has said, ‘Oh, DC films are gritty and dark and that’s what makes them different.’ That couldn’t be more wrong. It’s a hopeful and optimistic view of life. Even Batman has a glimmer of that in him. If he didn’t think he’d make tomorrow better, he’d stop.” -Geoff Johns explaining the shift in the tone of the DCEU after the BvS debacle

            “[The DC superheroes will have] more lightness in them. We’re thinking about that. This is the part where we say ‘pay no attention to the critics’. we do think there’s a little room for improvement.” – Chairmen of Time Warner on the the change the DCEU needs to make for improvement.

            DC fans will start to see this shift in tone in future movies. Exciting time and I’m fired up to help usher in a new DC era. #BlackAdam⚡️ https://twitter.com/yahoomovies/status/820015576890359808

            All of these quotes are trying to fix all the issues people had with BvS. My god they chopped Suicide Squad to bits and reshoot half the movie to make it less dank and dark after the BvS fallout. But stay in delusion-land with the rest of the DCEU fanboys on the sinking ship. That everyone else can see but you

          • SAMURAI36

            So what? What on earth does this have to do with what I said? And how does it negate the FACT that JL was going to be lighter in tone from the very beginning?

            You just keep making stuff up, and then twisting the narrative around to fit what you WANT it to mean.

            Let me know when you find Terrio’s original statement from 2 years ago.

          • SAMURAI36

            Also, David Ayer himself debunked the “lightening up SS” rumor on Twitter. so while you’re looking for tweets, go look for that one as well.

  • SAMURAI36

    I definitely appreciate the heart-felt letter.

    However, what I find interesting, is that NONE of the sites that have reported on this, have mentioned 2 key things from his letter:

    1) The notion that he only worked for 6 weeks prior to making this film (he specifically stated he worked on it for a couple of years)

    2) That there was some secret vault full of unused Joker scenes.

    The only site that mentioned this, was this one: http://dccomicsmovie.com/david-ayer-writes-open-letter-on-the-suicide-squad-criticism/