There was a great deal of hype surrounding the release of director David Ayer's Suicide Squad. The marketing machine was in full swing – it was vibrant, musical, edgy and explosive, it focused on Will Smith's Deadshot, Margot Robbie's Harley Quinn and Jared Leto's Joker, it teased Batman, and most of all it plain and simply looked like a hell of a lot fun.
As the first non-Superman centric entry in the blossoming DC Extended Universe of movies, Warner Bros. was hoping for Suicide Squad to connect with audiences in a way the disappointing Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice couldn't. However, when the highly-anticipated movie was finally released, the reception was lukewarm at best, and, depending on who you believe, wholly disastrous at worst.
The film was critically panned, with both audiences and critics lamenting its lack of focus, its wonky editing, its uninspired story and its complete lack of Joker. However, the movie did manage to earn a sizable amount of money at the box-office, which in turn prompted Warner Bros. to swiftly green light a sequel. While it's been over a year since we've known that a sequel was planned, Suicide Squad 2 is now a project that is reportedly on the fast-track. In fact, it was only a few short days ago that Variety reported that The Accountant director Gavin O'Connor has been tapped to write the film and is actively in talks to direct.
With such a strong director potentially in its corner, it's entirely possible for Warner Bros., to avoid the pitfalls of the first movie and give us the Suicide Squad film we've always wanted, a movie that the fans deserve. Here's how:
Take The Time To Get The Story Right
It's difficult to deny that David Ayer is a great director; just looking at his extensive filmography is enough proof of that. However, it's been widely reported that the writer-director only had a few short weeks to write Suicide Squad's script. That was clearly not enough time to polish a story that has to accommodate so many characters with so many different backgrounds, and it could be one of the reasons why the movie lacked so much focus. It only seemed to grow worse from there, with an increasing number of reports that claim Warner Bros. meddled greatly with the final cut of the movie, with the studio even reportedly going so far as hiring a movie trailer company to do the editing of the film. Somewhere along the way, the director and the studio found themselves unable to see eye-to-eye as to the direction of the story, something that should have been decided upon long before the cameras rolled.
Gavin O'Connor co-wrote and directed the deeply moving, brutal and cathartic Warrior in 2011, a movie starring Tom Hardy and Joel Edgerton as rival estranged brothers fighting in a UFC competition. He more recently directed 2016's The Accountant, starring Ben Affleck as an number-crunching vigilante, a movie that has been interpreted as a darker, more serious and realistic take on an original superhero property. The movie proved successful, and a sequel is actively in the works.
O'Connor's movies have their very own rhythm, one that is greatly different from Suicide Squad. Thus, Warner Bros. would do well to give O'Connor not only all the time he needs to work on the movie's story, the studios should make a point not to interfere with his vision when it comes to editing the film. Warner Bros. already has a working relationship with the director, who has already proven himself successful, so it should be relatively easy to step back and let O'Connor do what he does best.