After being fired as the director of Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 for highly controversial tweets that were made over a decade ago, James Gunn made a significant return to superhero movies by being hired by Warner Bros. to write the script for DC’s Suicide Squad 2 this past October.
The script he was writing wouldn’t be considered a true sequel but rather a soft relaunch of the franchise, so the title has been changed to The Suicide Squad. Now, he’s making the move to direct the film as well. More on the report below.
Per THR, plans for Gunn to direct were always on the table since he was already writing. The film, now set for an August 2021 release, will go in a new direction with a mostly all-new cast of characters and actors. It is said that this soft-relaunch has Gunn’s vibes in it, and is similar to that of his take on Guardians of the Galaxy.
The original, which was directed by David Ayer, had similar themes to Guardians, where a collection of strange and quirky characters banded together to stop a common threat. Additionally, the film made use of classic hit songs that played a role in the film.
Suicide Squad starred Will Smith as Deadshot, a sniper with deadly accuracy; Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn, a former psychiatrist turned Joker’s partner in crime and on again and off again lover; Jared Leto as the Joker, aka the Clown Prince of Crime. Other members include Captain Boomerang, Killer Croc, and El Diablo. The team was led by Joel Kinnaman as Rick Flagg, an elite soldier working for Task Force X, and the leader of the Suicide Squad. Viola Davis played Amanda Waller, a politician who gathered up these criminals so that she could use them as a line of defense should Batman or Superman ever go rogue.
It’s unclear if this new Suicide Squad will acknowledge previous events. Based on films like Birds of Prey, it looks like the group has broken up, forcing a new team to be formed.
In the 2016 original film, a group of dangerous superpowered criminals execute dangerous black-ops missions in exchange for lighter sentences. But it should come as no surprise that this is being considered a soft-relaunch as WB is more concerned with developing these as standalone features and less concerned with ensemble event pics.
Gunn has yet to sign on the dotted line, but if talks are successful, it would be the first time that he has directed a film since his firing. Brightburn, which he produced, is slated to hit theaters later this year.