David Ayer says his original version of Suicide Squad "scared" the studio

Jared Leto as Joker in Suicide Squad
(Image credit: Warner Bros./DC)

David Ayer has talked more about his version of Suicide Squad.

When Suicide Squad debuted in 2016, it was met with mostly bad reviews, but still managed to score over $700 million at the global box office – and Margot Robbie's Harley Quinn became a fan favorite, starring in Birds of Prey and reappearing in James Gunn's upcoming soft-reboot/sequel The Suicide Squad (which now has a trailer and two TV spots).

However, Ayer has been very open about alleged studio interference on Suicide Squad, claiming it was "ripped to pieces," and saying there were "terrifying" scenes featuring Jared Leto's Joker with "incredible acting" cut from the film.

Ayer has spoken more about the original version of the film to Entertainment Weekly. "I get it, it's a business," he said. "It's frustrating because I made a really heartfelt drama and it got ripped to pieces and they tried to turn it into Deadpool, which it just wasn't supposed to be. And then you take the hit, you're the captain of the ship, my name was on it. [Laughs] Even though it didn't represent what I actually made, I would take all the bullets and be a good soldier. I made an amazing movie. It's an amazing movie, it just scared the s**t out of the executives."

Of course, Zack Snyder's Justice League – known for years as the Snyder Cut – recently released on HBO Max after a passionate fan campaign brought it back from the dustbin of history. A similar campaign calls for the Ayer Cut's release, though Warner Bros. CEO Ann Sarnoff very succinctly poured water over these hopes: "We won’t be developing David Ayer's cut." Ayer then asked "Why?" on Twitter.

"I think the studios see now that there can be canon, there can be non-canon, the fans just want to touch it," Ayer commented to EW. "They love the characters, they just want to spend more time with it. And people are way more sophisticated about how movies are made and want to be participants in the journey. There's room for different things, different versions, different assets being shared with the audience. I think it just helps strengthen the community. But absolute credit to Warner Bros. for supporting Zack and having the courage to explore that."

With Gunn's new version of Task Force X on the way, it seems unlikely that we'll get the Ayer Cut anytime soon – or at all. Still, stranger things have certainly happened in the DCEU, so never say never. For now, check out how to watch DC movies in order for the ultimate movie marathon.

Molly Edwards
Entertainment Writer

I'm an Entertainment Writer here at GamesRadar+, covering all things film and TV for the site's Total Film and SFX sections. I previously worked on the Disney magazines team at Immediate Media, and also wrote on the CBeebies, MEGA!, and Star Wars Galaxy titles after graduating with a BA in English.