Suicide Squad Director Defends His 'Vastly Better' Unreleased Cut

By Russ Milheim Updated:
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David Ayer, director of the 2016 DCEU epic Suicide Squad, took to Twitter to defend his director's cut of the film yet again.

The moment Warner Bros. allowed Zack Snyder to put out his version of Justice League, a can of worms was opened. This led to the movement for the Ayer Cut, which quickly gained strength as fans fought for the director's original version of Suicide Squad to be released.

While the Ayer Cut may still not have seen a wide release, it has been screened. A lucky fan previously shared back in October of 2022 that they watched the cut on Ayer's very own computer, which presented a "totally different story."

The DC filmmaker even went on to confirm it himself. Now, he is back with more to say regarding his secret cut of the project.

Defending Ayer's Suicide Squad Cut

Suicide Squad movie

Suicide Squad director David Ayer responded to fans on Twitter in an effort to express why his personal cut of the 2016 film is better than its theatrical counterpart.

In response to a Twitter user commenting that the Ayer Cut is "never gonna happen," the Suicide Squad director joined the conversation, asking, "Why not?"

After someone else claimed that the cut wouldn't be worthwhile since "anything that wasn't included in the theatrical version is an after thought," Ayer was once again ready to defend himself:

"Normally, you’re absolutely right. This is an extraordinary case of a movie being utterly re-engineered in post. It’s not a couple cut scenes being added. "

So, what exactly is different about this infamous version of Suicide Squad?

Well, according to Ayer and the tidbits that have been released over the years, there are a few things.

For one, Jared Leto's Joker had a more prominent role, all of which was butchered by extensive reshoots and editing of the cut that made it to theaters. His abusive relationship with Margot Robbie's Harley Quinn was claimed to be further fleshed out and more brutal.

Speaking of Joker, on top of dealing with her maniac ex, Harley Quinn was also set to be romantically involved with Will Smith's Deadshot.

Backstory seemed to be a common thing lost between the theatrical and director's cut. Supposedly, both Slipknot and Enchantress would have had more to their stories compared to the bare minimum seen in the final version.

In the 2016 film, Katana didn't end up doing all that much. However, in Ayer's personal cut, she's pivotal to a third-act action sequence and, in general, would have been given more to do.

Oh, and El Diablo didn't end up biting the bullet toward the end of the story.

Why the Ayer Cut Won't Happen

There's a pretty clear reason as to why David Ayer's cut of Suicide Squad won't see the light of day: Warner Bros. regrets having given even Zack Snyder a chance to put his Justice League out there.

WB insiders even admitted, "Zack Snyder's Justice League never should've happened."

Catering to demands from that particular fanbase also simply tends to fan the fire created by Snyderverse devotees, many of whom are known to be loud, aggressive, and discount anything that isn't part of the original DCEU.

The studio itself previously confirmed that "there's no plan for additional work on [the Snyderverse]." Dan Lin, who was once rumored to be taking over the DCU, publically called out Snyder's fans, noting how those "crazy" fans would have gone after him if he had a leadership position.

It's probably best that the world continues on its path of leaving Suicide Squad behind. 

After all, James Gunn's more recent The Suicide Squad was received vastly better from both critics and fans. It even spawned a beloved HBO Max series, Peacemaker.

With Gunn having taken over the DCU alongside Peter Safran, the future for The Suicide Squad is unknown—however, given their closeness to Gunn, odds are that there will be something happening with those characters sooner rather than later.

The original 2016 version of Suicide Squad, and Gunn's soft reboot, are both now streaming on HBO Max.

- About The Author: Russ Milheim
Russ Milheim is the Industry Relations Coordinator at The Direct. On top of utilizing his expertise on the many corners of today’s entertainment to cover the latest news and theories, he establishes and maintains communication and relations between the outlet and the many studio and talent representatives.