Last night, “Suicide Squad” hit theaters, and while reviews haven’t been kind, audiences have certainly been eager. The supervillain movie is expected to smash domestic box office records this weekend, and as Variety reports, it’s looking to have a very strong international rollout as well, with estimates suggesting it could earn $100 million from foreign ticket sales alone. That would put the picture out of the gate on a better pace than “Deadpool” and “Guardians Of Galaxy,” which earned $782 million and $773 million worldwide respectively. However, there is one major market Warner Bros. will have to do without.
China’s State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television hasn’t given approval for “Suicide Squad” to be released in the country, and it looks unlikely to happen. That’s certainly a bit of blow to WB, who reportedly need the film earn $750-800 million to break even, and not being able to roll into one of the biggest and most important movie markets in the world isn’t great news. “Batman v Superman: Dawn Of Justice” did see release in the country, adding $95 million to the film’s bottom line, and that’s money WB won’t be seeing for “Suicide Squad.” And given the equally contentious nature with which this film is being received, the studio will need every bit of box office they can get.
Among the major stories to emerge this week about “Suicide Squad,” was that WB cut their own version of the film, and tested it against director David Ayer‘s darker vision, with the studio and filmmaker ultimately settling on a compromise for the finished production. Both parties say the decision making process was mutual and they are happy with the finished result, and speaking with Collider, Ayer seems to suggest that fans shouldn’t hold out hope for some kind of extended version or director’s cut like Zack Snyder did with ‘Dawn Of Justice.’
“…there’s definitely over 10 minutes of [deleted] material on [the forthcoming home video release]. But this cut of the movie is my cut, there’s no sort of parallel universe version of the movie, the released movie is my cut,” Ayers emphasized. “And that’s one of the toughest things about writing, shooting, and directing a film, is you end up with these orphans and you fucking love them and you think they’d be amazing scenes and do these amazing things but the film is a dictatorship (laughs), not a democracy, and just because something’s cool and charismatic doesn’t mean it gets to survive in the final cut. The flow of the movie is the highest master.”
That’s definitely true (and a lesson that perhaps Zack Snyder should heed), and Ayers adds that from script to production, things always change, and for a film of this size, it was simply inevitable that not everything would make it in.
“…it’s always a moving target as you try and distill and condense down to the best movie. And this thing was a beast, we had over a million and a half feet of footage, with an ensemble movie, 7 plus major characters that we have to introduce, a very complex story that is not your normal linear story and you’re introducing the audience to a whole new world…it just took a lot of work to find the movie…,” he explained.
Meanwhile, the other more curious bit of news to emerge this week was the fan petition launched with the (impossible) goal of shutting down Rotten Tomatoes over the bad notices for “Suicide Squad.” It was all the more amusing since the majority of comic book heads hadn’t yet seen the film, but others have already stood up for the picture, including “Wonder Woman” director Patty Jenkins. And cast members are also defending the picture.
“The critics have been absolutely horrific; they’re really, really horrible. You know, I just don’t think they like superhero movies,” Cara Delevingne told Reuters.
As for Joel Kinnaman, he just wants the audience to walk away happy. “You know, of course you want critical acclaim, of course, but what matters is what the fans think. We’re really proud of this film, we loved making it, everybody on the film has become really close friends, and this is like a work of love, and I hope the fans like it,” he told Digital Spy.
And though built for summer movie escapism, it seems “Suicide Squad” can’t even stay out of the more serious realm of politics, with Inverse revealing that the film’s executive producer Steven Mnuchin, also happens to be Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump‘s chief of fundraising. Talk about supervillainy! But if you decide not to see “Suicide Squad” on political grounds, you should probably also know that Mnuchin was the producer on “Batman v Superman: Dawn Of Justice,” “Mad Max: Fury Road,” and “American Sniper,” so you’ve likely already given him your money.
Finally, if you’ve already seen the movie or want to get prepped, fire up this 20-minute Google Talk with director David Ayer and the cast of the film.