David Ayer has been reflecting on the negative reviews that his DC Comics antihero movie, Suicide Squad, received back in 2015.
David Ayer’s career has been a bit of a mixed bag. He started off by writing the script to the frankly brilliant Training Day and then went into directing delivering movies like Harsh Times, End of Watch, Street Kings and Fury, which all have their strong and weak points. But then there’s the other side of Ayer, the not-so-good side. Firstly, he’s seemingly been simply repackaging the same movie over and over again, and then there’s the fact that he’s made some real stinkers like Sabotage, Suicide Squad and most recently Bright.
In a recent interview with Entertainment Weekly (via Den of Geek) the writer/director discussed the negative reception to one of his movies in particular, DC Comics’ Suicide Squad. “It was shit. Yeah, it was shit reviews. I got my throat cut,” he recalled. I don’t think he means that he literally got his throat cut. It’s more of a metaphorical thing.
He continued: “It was a super polarizing movie. Incredibly polarizing. It’s like going to the boxing ring and getting knocked out is how it felt. And I had to go into the ring again. And directing is a confidence game, because you’re selling everyone on something that only exists in your head. The actors have to feel that confidence to trust that you know what you’re doing, and so does your crew. As a director, you set the tone. Really, it’s coming off that movie, I understood the pitfalls, I understood the dangers, I knew where the alligators hide, you know? And so I made damn sure I didn’t repeat any mistakes.”
His comments are interesting because it has to be mentioned that not all of Suicide Squad’s failings are down to its director. The studio was also to blame, perhaps more so than Ayer. It’s no secret that the movie they released was not quite what Ayer had envisioned. It had been speedily re-edited before release and we’ll never know what Ayer’s original vision for Suicide Squad would have looked like. Although, his latest film Bright might give you something of an idea, and if that movie’s anything to go by, Ayer’s Suicide Squad probably wouldn’t have been much better than what we got.
Ayer’s next project is Bright 2, which will see both Will Smith and Joel Edgerton return but it will not be written by Max Landis who penned the script to the first film. He’ll probably follow that up with Gotham City Sirens yet there hasn’t been too much chatter about that film lately.