Second Suicide Squad film isn't a sequel, title is nice and simple

The new movie, with James Gunn directing, is called The Suicide Squad, and some actors will return.

Gael Fashingbauer Cooper
CNET freelancer Gael Fashingbauer Cooper, a journalist and pop-culture junkie, is co-author of "Whatever Happened to Pudding Pops? The Lost Toys, Tastes and Trends of the '70s and '80s," as well as "The Totally Sweet '90s." If Marathon candy bars ever come back, she'll be first in line.
Gael Fashingbauer Cooper
2 min read

The first Suicide Squad came out in 2016.

Warner Bros.

There's a second Suicide Squad movie coming, but it's not a sequel, producer Peter Safran told CNET sister site ComicBook.com in an article published Friday.

"It's called The Suicide Squad,' Safran said. "It's not Suicide Squad 2. It is not a sequel. I will leave that alone but, yes, it's called The Suicide Squad." Safran didn't expand on whether the film was a prequel, a reboot or other non-sequel feature.

The original 2016 film, based on DC super-villain characters, was directed by David Ayer. According to CNET sister site Metacritic, the film has earned mixed to average reviews. Only 27 percent of critics' reviews on Rotten Tomatoes are positive, but 60 percent of the audience reviews are positive.

The second Suicide Squad film made headlines in October 2018. James Gunn, who at that time had been fired from the Guardians of the Galaxy franchise when old offensive tweets of his had surfaced, was named director -- a Marvel-to-DC switch. 

Even then, reports were that the Suicide Squad film Gunn would handle wouldn't be considered a direct sequel, but a new take on the franchise.  That's good news for those who enjoy Gunn's lighthearted, music-filled Guardians universe.

Gunn was rehired in March to direct Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 after all, but won't start work on that film until completing the Suicide Squad movie.

Jai Courtney will again play Captain Boomerang, and Viola Davis will return as Amanda Waller, ComicBook.com reports. Idris Elba will also star in the film. Early reports said he would take on the role of Deadshot, played in the 2016 film by Will Smith, but Variety reported Friday afternoon that Elba would play another role. 

Warner Bros. had no comment on Elba's role.

The Suicide Squad will open on Aug. 6, 2021.

Originally published April 5, 12:07 p.m.
Updates, 2:30 p.m.: Adds that Idris Elba may play a new character, not Deadshot; April 6: Includes note that Warner Bros. didn't comment on Elba's role.

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