2016 will see DC and Warner Bros. truly launch their interconnected movie universe, with Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice building on the foundation laid out in 2013’s Man of Steel. Later that year, David Ayer’s Suicide Squad will follow, presenting an entirely different dimension of the same narrative world.
In fact, this introduction to some of DC’s most famous – and dangerous – villains is shaping up to be a pivotal entry in DC and Warner Bros.’ mega-franchise, as the characters set to appear (some for the first time onscreen) have historically been adversaries of many different superheroes: Jared Leto’s Joker will be joined by (among others) Will Smith as Deadshot, Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn, Cara Delevingne as Enchantress, Viola Davis as Amanda Waller, Jai Courtney as Captain Boomerang, Joel Kinnaman as Rick Flagg and Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje as Killer Croc.
Among the many and varied questions fans have about this attempt to frontload the DC cinematic universe with some major supervillains (how will Leto’s Joker compare to what’s come before? What are Harley Quinn’s origins? How does Batman fit in?) the depiction of famed Batman villain Waylon Jones/Killer Croc is not least among them.
Our first real glimpse of the new Croc came in the form of Suicide Squad‘s first official group picture, with the movie’s Comic Con trailer giving us a longer look. Now, in honor of Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje’s 48th birthday, his fellow cast member Will Smith gave him a cake reading “HAPPY BIRTHDAY CROC” and the two posed for a picture, with Akinnuoye-Agbaje in his full Killer Croc make-up. Click the link below (via Comicbook.com) to take a look.
This is a raw, close look at the Killer Croc prosthetic mask and make-up without any movie lighting or special effects to enhance it. Akinnuoye-Agbaje looks more like a lizard man from an episode of Star Trek (or maybe the Silurian reptile people from Doctor Who) than the traditional depiction of Killer Croc in the comics – but then again, the look of the character tends to vary wildly.
Originally appearing in 1983 (his storyline coincided with the introduction of Jason Todd), Waylon Jones/Croc’s backstory was reconfigured for DC’s New 52 reboot, but not by much. He is depicted as living in the sewers or on the fringe of society, has hardened skin and super strength, a condition explained as a form of atavism (having inherited genetic aspects of humans’ ancestral species – in this case reptiles).
He has recently played a role in the popular Batman: Arkham line of games, appearing first in Arkham Asylum with an oversized jaw and exaggerated mouthful of teeth. Croc showed up again in the prequel game Batman: Arkham Origins, with the similar size and strength but a relatively normal-sized jaw and head. In the Suicide Squad trailer, Croc is first trussed up like Hannibal Lecter and our next brief look shows him sneering and gives us a brief look at some very sharp-looking teeth.
Judging by this un-enhanced view of the Croc make-up, our final version of Killer Croc in the film will have a mouth with expressions aided by the use of animatronics or (more likely) CGI to give him a more gaping maw. Will this version of Waylon Jones prove faithful to the source material? We’ll find out for sure next year.
Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice will be in theaters on March 25th, 2016; Suicide Squad on August 5th, 2016; Wonder Woman – June 23rd, 2017; Justice League – November 17th, 2017; The Flash – March 23rd, 2018; Aquaman – July 27th, 2018; Shazam – April 5th, 2019; Justice League 2 – June 14th, 2019; Cyborg – April 3rd, 2020; Green Lantern – June 19th, 2020.