The Health Issues Viola Davis Suffered While Filming Suicide Squad

Amanda Waller

Suicide Squad is the DC Extended Universe's third entry, but beyond that, it promises to be one of the weirder comic book movies across all the studios. Eschewing heroes in favor of spotlighting villains, the summer blockbuster features a ragtag group of unsavory characters going on dangerous missions for the U.S. government. The various previews have made it clear this is going to be a wild ride, apparently so wild that Viola Davis, who plays Task Force X head Amanda Waller, actually suffered from some health issues while shooting the movie.

Davis wasn't willing to do too in-depth with E! Live about what's in store for Suicide Squad, but she did reveal that during production, her heart actually started beating too fast, and she even wondered if she experienced some hearing loss. The actress said:

"It got so crazy that there were times during filming that I had heart palpitations. Not only heart palpitations, but at one point, I said, 'Did I suffer from hearing loss? Why is my left ear still pounding?'"

Over her nearly 25-year long acting career, Viola Davis has starred in a number of emotionally intense projects, like her ABC series How to Get Away With Murder, Suicide Squad is without a doubt the biggest, most action-packed blockbuster she's ever acted in. With all those guns going off and freaky villains wandering around, including a psychopathic clown and a crocodile man, a lot of us would also probably get a little too worked up or suffer from brief hearing loss. However, while Davis doesn't have to worry about doing this kind of work on a regular basis (though if Suicide Squad 2 gets greenlit, she'll most likely be jumping back in), Amanda Waller has no problem with the hectic life of overseeing super villains and "dealing" with those who get in the way of her goals.

Aside from these health issues, Viola Davis also mentioned how Jared Leto, Margot Robbie and the rest of her costars got to be "completely insane" in Suicide Squad since all of their characters are both insane and bad guys. That's exaggerating a little bit since Katana and Batman are heroes, though the former is still voluntarily working on the criminal team. Regardless, the majority of the movie's players aren't nice people, and the only reason they're on this team is so they're awarded leniency if they survive...oh, and they have a micro-bomb implanted in them that will be detonated if they try to escape or get out of line. Triggering that would also get one's heart racing, I imagine.

You can watch the full interview below, which also includes Viola Davis recounting how she felt when she truly met Jared Leto for the first time, since before that, he was only in character as The Joker on set.

Suicide Squad hits theaters on August 5.

Adam Holmes
Senior Content Producer

Connoisseur of Marvel, DC, Star Wars, John Wick, MonsterVerse and Doctor Who lore, Adam is a Senior Content Producer at CinemaBlend. He started working for the site back in late 2014 writing exclusively comic book movie and TV-related articles, and along with branching out into other genres, he also made the jump to editing. Along with his writing and editing duties, as well as interviewing creative talent from time to time, he also oversees the assignment of movie-related features. He graduated from the University of Oregon with a degree in Journalism, and he’s been sourced numerous times on Wikipedia. He's aware he looks like Harry Potter and Clark Kent.