In March 2016, five full-months before its release, there was a report that Warner Bros. was already developing a Suicide Squad sequel. Typically, that’s a sign of a very strong film. And while, yes, Suicide Squad did scoop up an impressive $745.6 million at the worldwide box office, most people — if they are being honest with themselves — wouldn’t describe it as a “very strong film.” As for film critics, they ripped it apart, with top critics giving it a miserable 19% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
Even so, its healthy box office figures are more than enough reason for WB to proceed with a follow-up, but since director/screenwriter David Ayer is currently busy helming Gotham City Sirens — a spinoff movie featuring Margot Robbie’s Harley Quinn, presumably, teaming up with Poison Ivy and Catwoman — the studio is on the hunt for a new director.
On Wednesday, Mel Gibson became the first name attached to the gig. According to The Hollywood Reporter, WB is in “early talks” with the controversial director of Braveheart and Passion of the Christ about directing Suicide Squad 2. And hours later, while attending a screening of his Oscar-nominated film Hacksaw Ridge at the Aero Theatre in Santa Monica, Gibson confirmed the report.
During the Q&A session, the moderator asked, “So is this getting close to a deal or is it a first date?” To which Gibson replied, “It’s kind of a first date.”
Meanwhile, Variety’s Justin Kroll is reporting that Warner Bros. is also considering Ruben Fleischer (Zombieland), Daniel Espinosa (Safe House), and Jonathan Levine (Warm Bodies), but Gibson is the frontrunner and can have the job if he wants it.
“Couple updates on the SUICIDE SQUAD director search since I posted after a few calls,” Kroll tweeted. “First if Mel wants it, it’s his.” He added, “Will and Mel actually wanted to do THE ACCOUNTANT years ago but old regime didn’t want Mel but shows how much Mel want to work with Will. That said still ways away from decision on this, stay tuned.”