Jared Leto’s version of the Joker in Suicide Squad may not have been to everyone’s tastes, but director David Ayer has defended the tattoo-laden interpretation of the Clown Prince of Crime, saying his “heart breaks” for the actor.
Ayer, who had a hand in developing the look for Leto’s Joker, was drawn into a debate about the character on Twitter.
“For sure character creation is a tightrope,” Ayer said. “I took inspiration from the current DC comics. I find it incredible it’s still such a topic 5 years later. My heart breaks for Jared - he did magnificent work.”
As Ayer points out, Leto’s take on Joker still incites passionate reactions to this day, all despite having a relatively minor role in Suicide Squad. In fact, Ayer confirmed that most of the “magnificent work” was from footage cut out of the finished product and “remains unseen.”
For sure character creation is a tightrope. I took inspiration from the current DC comics. I find it incredible it’s still such a topic 5 years later. My heart breaks for Jared - he did magnificent work. Most of it remains unseen. https://t.co/IRj7vB1ZjGMay 5, 2020
What of the ‘damaged’ forehead tattoo that drew so much ire? One Twitter user replied to Ayer, saying, it was “actually pretty ingenious, but only for those who understand. Joker got the tattoo because [Batman] damaged his smile in a failed attempt at revenge for killing Robin.” Ayer’s response, much like the ink, was just one word: “Exactly.”
Exactly https://t.co/dP3JbroS1HMay 4, 2020
It’s unlikely we’ll see Leto as Joker again – a 2019 report stated he won't be playing the character moving forward, while Joaquin Phoenix won the Best Actor at this year's Oscars for his portrayal of Arthur Fleck’s Joker – so whatever remains of the rest of his performance remains consigned to the vaults of history (and Warner Bros).