The first trailer for The Suicide Squad dropped a few days ago. While the film – which is set for a summer release – will be the tenth installment of the DC Extended Universe and function as a sequel of sorts to 2016’s Suicide Squad and last year’s Birds of Prey, it will likely work as a standalone story for those who haven’t seen one or both of those movies. Here’s why The Suicide Squad will be Director James Gunn’s craziest movie to date.
The DCEU initially operated under a strict set of rules, one of which was essentially a ban on humor. This was likely meant to distinguish this cinematic universe from Marvel’s, whose jokes were and are one of the studio’s signature trademarks. However, the avoidance of comedy didn’t work out for DC and they slowly allowed some into the movies. Wonder Woman and Aquaman both had humorous moments, and Shazam! and Birds of Prey had comedy as a core element of their stories.
It’s looking like The Suicide Squad could be the silliest and most outrageous DCEU installment yet, and that’s largely thanks to director James Gunn. Best known for his Guardians of the Galaxy movies over at Marvel, Gunn signed on to direct The Suicide Squad after being fired from Guardians of the Galaxy vol. 3 (for which he has since been rehired). He is also directing Peacemaker, a series spun-off from The Suicide Squad.
Full Creative Control
Gunn has shared that The Suicide Squad has been his favorite movie to work on in his entire career, citing the great team and environment he had alongside him. It appears that this sentiment may also stem from The Suicide Squad allowing him full range to get crazy within a superhero universe.
There has been plenty of speculation and debate about whether Marvel Studios and the DC division of Warner Bros. allow their filmmakers enough or any creative freedom with projects. Many Marvel directors have said quite the opposite, but the fact remains that all of their projects so far have been rated PG-13, meaning things like cursing and violence have had to be kept to a certain level in order to get the green light.
DC, on the other hand, has had very public issues with creative visions being compromised (just look at #RestoreTheSnyderverse and #ReleaseTheAyerCut) but they do allow more freedom with their characters in some respects. While new projects for the DCEU continue to be developed, the focus seems to be less on connecting projects for the development of a greater narrative and more on ensuring characters get projects that match what they’re all about. This makes for a less cohesive cinematic universe, but a wider variety in tone and style from movie to movie.
Will The Suicide Squad be R Rated?
The R rating isn’t shied away from when it’s appropriate for a project to contain such content that warrants it…which brings us back to The Suicide Squad. Even from the small bit of footage released so far, it’s obvious the movie is going to be full of R-rated content. James Gunn appears to have been given free reign to include all the violence and dirty content he wanted, and he hasn’t held back.
The comparisons between The Suicide Squad and Gunn’s Guardians of the Galaxy movies over at Marvel are inevitable (and will probably grow tiresome quickly) but it’s worth noting that there’s a good chance Guardians would be an R-rated franchise if it were made by Warner Bros. It’s not necessarily bad that it isn’t, as many kids and teens love this style of comedy and should have access to some movies within the genre. However, it’s clear that The Suicide Squad is Gunn’s chance to truly go all-out with this kind of violence and gross-out humor in a comic book movie setting.
Gunn’s next project is the long-awaited Guardians of the Galaxy vol. 3 (along with a holiday special set within the franchise) and he has stated that he plans to take a break afterwards. One has to imagine he won’t be able to stay away from the movie world for too long, though, so the question is whether he’ll return to Marvel, DC, or both someday. Marvel was said to have put him in a position of mapping out the cosmic side of the MCU for the foreseeable future prior to his firing in 2018, but DC seems to deeply value him considering they have him doing a Peacemaker series even though The Suicide Squad hasn’t come out yet.