A lot of people, both online and in person, have been asking me what’s going on with David Ayer’s Suicide Squad (The AyerCut) at WB. (Warner Bros.)
“Why hasn’t WB just released The AyerCut?” (lovingly called The AyerCut.)
“Why don’t they just put it on HBO Max?”
“What happened with Suicide Squad?”
“Why did WB have the movie re-edited back in 2016 before it was released?”
These, yet again, are all very valid questions.
Over the past few weeks, I’ve been covering the inner workings over at WarnerMedia.
There is a multitude of reasons why I’ve been doing this.
One reason is it’s a fascinating story, especially if you’re into finding out how Hollywood works.
However, the main reason has been because people have been really confused by the whole ordeal.
WB isn’t developing David Ayer’s Suicide Squad
This all started when Ann Sarnoff – CEO of WarnerMedia Studios – did an interview with Variety.
In that interview, she basically put an end to the SnyderVerse, and she also said that they would not be developing David Ayer’s cut of Suicide Squad.
This sent the Internet into meltdown, and rightly so.
What is WarnerMedia playing at?
She also went a step further and denounced the “toxic” DCEU fans out there.
Now, we all know that there is a minority of the #RestoreTheSnyderVerse and DCEU fandom that is toxic and that does operate in a less than sensible manner.
However, the interview was basically putting all DCEU fans into that boat, and that’s just not the case at all.
So, yes, WarnerMedia is a mess right now, but it has been a mess for years, and what happened to David Ayer’s Suicide Squad is proof of that.
WB panicked after watching Deadpool
They hired Ayer to make Suicide Squad and at the time, the vast majority of people thought that was a good idea.
Ayer’s previous work was solid and also he has a tendency of making good movies about relatively bad people – so it seemed like a good fit.
We also knew what we were in for when it was revealed that Ayer was making a Suicide Squad movie.
Well, Warner Bros. obviously didn’t really know what they were in for, because when he showed them his cut of the movie, they panicked.
There are many reasons why they did, but the main one was that they thought the movie was just too dark.
We were now living in a post-Deadpool age.
That was an R-rated movie that made over $780 million at the box office.
It was the most successful R-rated movie of all time, and that movie had jokes in it.
The movie that Ayer made was, let’s say light on jokes.
It was dark, moody, violent and full of Jared Leto’s Joker.
David Ayer’s Suicide Squad was light on jokes and heavy on the drama
The movie Warner Bros. executives wanted had changed, and it had changed all because of Deadpool.
Ayer even revealed this fact in a recent interview with Entertainment Weekly in which he said:
I get it, it’s a business. It’s frustrating because I made a really heartfelt drama and it got ripped to pieces and they tried to turn it into Deadpool, which it just wasn’t supposed to be. And then you take the hit, you’re the captain of the ship, my name was on it. [Laughs] Even though it didn’t represent what I actually made, I would take all the bullets and be a good soldier. I made an amazing movie. It’s an amazing movie, it just scared the shit out of the executives.
WB wanted Deadpool, not David Ayer’s dark and dramatic Suicide Squad
When they first hired Ayer, they liked his pitch, but this was before Tim Miller and Ryan Reynolds released the Deadpool film.
The stupid thing is, the following year 20th Century Fox went and released Logan, another R-rated comic book movie, and that film was very light on jokes.
It was light on jokes, big on drama and big on violence.
That film is now widely considered to be one of the best comic book movies ever made.
Now, it didn’t quite make Deadpool money (it still made an impressive $619 million at the worldwide box office).
However, it garnered critical acclaim and was a huge hit with the fans.
The Real Reason WB Won’t Release The AyerCut
Now, that’s the reason why Warner Bros. Pictures opted to get the guys who released the movie’s bloody trailer to re-edit the movie.
They ended up turning the film into one of the worst comic book movies I’ve ever seen.
However, let’s get onto the reason why Warner Bros. Pictures doesn’t want to release The AyerCut via HBO Max now.
What are they so scared of?
It seems like a real no-brainer to just release The AyerCut on HBO Max.
The movie’s already finished. I’ve been told that Ayer’s been working on finishing his edit of the film, and it’s basically ready to be released.
Warner Bros. wouldn’t have to put any more money into the project.
It’s not like they would have to spend the $70 million-plus they spent on Zack Snyder’s Justice League to get The AyerCut released.
So, what’s the hold-up?
Well, it’s the old ‘ego’ chestnut again.
Too many egos in the Warner Bros. Pictures kitchen…
There are just too many egos at Warner Bros. Pictures at the moment, and one of them was literally just promoted as WarnerMedia Studios’ CEO.
They do not want the general public to see David Ayer’s Suicide Squad because it’ll just reinforce everyone’s perception that the executives at Warner Bros. just do not have a clue.
Warner Bros. is just too reactive, and they know this fact.
They messed up with David Ayer’s Suicide Squad, and they also know that better than anyone else.
For many of the executives involved, and specifically the ones that took the decision to have the movie re-edited into the mess that they released, Suicide Squad is their biggest failure.
I’ve actually been told that executives at Warner Bros. never want David Ayer’s Suicide Squad to see the light of day. They’ve actively been squashing the film because it being released would be bad for their careers.
Again, all this has to do with egos and people at the very top fearing for their careers.
They are genuinely more scared of David Ayer’s Suicide Squad than they were for Zack Snyder’s Justice League.
One of the reasons is because with Justice League they had a scapegoat in Joss Whedon.
As far as The AyerCut is concerned, it goes straight back to the executives.
The AyerCut would be great for HBO Max, but bad for Warner Bros.
Now, many of the executives listed in the movie are no longer working on DC Comics movies.
You have the likes of Bruce Franklin, Geoff Johns, Charles Roven, Richard Suckle, Colin Wilson, Alex Ott, Andy Horwitz and interestingly enough Steven Mnuchin all attached to this film.
Funnily enough, there are also two other people attached to Suicide Squad as executive producers, and they are Zack and Deborah Snyder.
These are the only two who’ve openly called for The AyerCut to be released.
Isn’t that a funny thing…
I’ve been told that the key name on that list is Charles Roven, who’s still one of the main producers over at Warner Bros. Pictures.
He’s the name who’ll see attached to almost all the DC Comics movies.
Richard Suckle has also been attached to a number of DC Comics movie properties such as Wonder Woman and Wonder Woman 1984.
However, there are a whole bunch of other people involved behind the scenes that are much more powerful than the likes of Roven and Suckle.
They are the ones actively preventing this movie from being released.
Will The AyerCut ever see the light of day?
Right, so, the big question, will we ever get to see David Ayer’s Suicide Squad?
Never say never, and there’s always AT&T who were the ones really responsible for getting Zack Snyder’s Justice League released.
They will see the number of people sharing the hashtag #ReleaseTheAyerCut.
They are watching, and if they think it’s economically viable, then they’ll get it released on HBO Max which is really their baby.
If it’ll help gain subscribers for HBO Max then they’ll release it.
These are very interesting times on the studio lot.
If you have any questions regarding this article or The AyerCut, you can reach me via Twitter @EJLauder.
My DMs, as usual, are open.
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