Despite what a lot of critics (and some DC fans) would prefer, Suicide Squad was always primed for a followup. Yes, it was a dumb, dumb movie where the bad guys were blobs controlled by a whispering Cara Delevingne, but the movie was sheer, rollicking fun. And receipts don’t lie, given that the movie pulled in $325 million domestically and $746 million worldwide. However, it was surprising that David Ayer wouldn’t have a hand in the followup because James Gunn hopped onboard for a total relaunch. Given that Gunn’s the guy that expertly guided the Guardians of the Galaxy tone to both critical and box-office acclaim, what exactly should we expect him to do differently? He’s been very secretive, other than revealing his expansive new cast, but Joel Kinnaman (who, thank god, is returning as Rick Flag) is now speaking out on what to expect.
As The Killing star recently told Variety in podcast form, The Suicide Squad is the most uproarious movie that he’s ever had the pleasure of filming. Even moreso than RoboCop? (Sorry, not sorry.) Yes, indeed, and he loves Gunn, too:
“He’s an incredible guy. He’s written a fantastic script. It’s so funny, [and] I feel like I’m shooting my first comedy. There are a lot of really funny people there. It’s like a learning experience. I’m around a lot of incredible funny people.”
Yes, this is relieving (not revealing, so much) because, while Ayer’s Suicide Squad had its moments of humor, we know that Gunn can strike the right balance between action and whimsy and adventure and an ensemble, and well, he’s the guy for a relaunch if we’ve really gotta have one. And I was slightly worried that Gunn might be tempted to go a little serious, but it sounds like that isn’t the case.
In addition, Kinnaman expressed a lot of enthusiasm about Joaquin Phoenix’s recent origin-story take on the Joker. “Joaquin just crushed it. Wow. He is incredible. He’s such an actor,” he raved. “It’s surprising to see that kind of a performance in something that has a DC wrapper on it, because that’s a real art film.” Well, it’s a good thing that Jared Leto (probably) won’t return as the Joker, even in Gunn’s film, because a whole cast of happy faces that loved Joaquin’s take would make things pretty awkward.