After James Gunn was controversially fired from directing Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, it seemed likely that it wouldn't be long before another studio scooped him up. It now looks like that has happened, with new reports saying that Gunn will be writing and possibly directing Suicide Squad 2. This is a huge coup for the DCEU, and the man who helmed the first Suicide Squad, David Ayer, supports it:
I think David Ayer's sentiments line up with a lot of fans' in regard to this hiring. Warner Bros. made a brave move by hiring someone who just went through a whirlwind of controversy that saw him getting fired from a wildly successful franchise. The studio has seemingly decided it was willing to bear whatever criticism may come in order to bring James Gunn on board.
As David Ayer says, it's a smart move to bring James Gunn on regardless of the capacity he ultimately fills. The writer/director has shown his talent in this space multiple times, and with a band of misfit characters just like the Suicide Squad, and it seems that was enough for the studio to decide that Suicide Squad 2 is better in his hands than someone else's.
David Ayer's Twitter support is cool if not just because you don't always see directors being super happy when they are replaced for a sequel. Suicide Squad was a financial success when it was released in the summer of 2016, but it did not win over critics, and the belief at large is that the quality level suffered from studio meddling. So it's nice to see that Ayer doesn't hold any bitterness about the gig, and is happy to hand off the reigns to someone like James Gunn.
Of course, while he isn't directing Suicide Squad 2, David Ayer also hasn't left the DCEU. He is taking the breakout character of his Suicide Squad, Margot Robbie's Harley Quinn, and directing her again in the upcoming Gotham City Sirens. The project doesn't have a release date yet, but is expected after Cathy Yan's Birds Of Prey, which is scheduled for 2020.
It will be very interesting to see, especially if James Gunn winds up writing and directing, just how much creative control Warner Bros. affords him. We think he is great for Suicide Squad 2 but in the DC Extended Universe it sometimes seems like the director's vision is only occasionally what actually makes it to the big screen. We'll keep you updated on Suicide Squad 2 and James Gunn as this story develops. For everything going on in the DCEU, keep an eye on our guide and head over to the release schedule to see all the biggest movies coming to theaters this fall.