Now that 20th Century Fox and director Bryan Singer’s X-Men: Apocalypse has begun its run at the international box office and is about to reach U.S. theaters, the next comic book-based movie event on the horizon is Warner Bros. Pictures and David Ayer’s DC Comics adaptation Suicide Squad. The latter movie is positioned to make household names (or the next best thing) of several lesser-known DC Comics characters who make up Task Force X: a team of incarcerated super-criminals who are assembled by shady government operative Amanda Waller (Viola Davis) to carry out missions that are likely to get them killed, but will see them rewarded with reduced prison sentences for their efforts if they manage to survive.
Most of the marketing material released for Suicide Squad to date has highlighted either the most-popular members of Task Force X or the best-known characters who are in the film in general – in particular, Harley Quinn (Margot Robbie), Joker (Jared Leto) and Batman (Ben Affleck), even though of those three players, only Harley is expected to have a leading role-sized amount of screen time in Ayer’s movie. However, the rest of Task Force X will get their fair share of the spotlight in certain future Suicide Squad tie-in merchandise, such the movie’s upcoming 16-month calendar series.
Trends International is producing 16-month Suicide Squad-theme calendars for the entirety 2017 and the last four months of 2016, including a 7” x 7” mini-wall calendar, a 6” x 12” mini-poster calendar, and a an 11.5” x 11.5” wall calendar. Amazon has preview images from all three of these calendars (before they become available to purchase this July) and you can check out that Suicide Squad film artwork, below.
For those who are still working on nailing down the names of Task Force X’s members: along with Harley and Joker, we have Will Smith as Deadshot, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje as Killer Croc, Jay Hernandez as Diablo, Jai Courtney as Captain Boomerang, Karen Fukuhara as Katana, and Joel Kinnaman as the Squad’s (non-imprisoned) boss, Rick Flag. As you can see, all of these characters get their own individuals months in the Suicide Squad calendars, as will Cara Delevingne as the supernatural Enchantress.
As for Suicide Squad itself; Ayer’s film is arriving at an interesting stage in the evolution of the DC Extended Universe. Longtime DC writer/producer Geoff Johns will be serving as the chief architect for the DCEU (and other sections of the DC “empire”), while people such as Ben Affleck will be playing a larger creative role in upcoming DCEU movies too, in the wake of the reception to the first two DCEU releases; Zack Snyder’s Man of Steel and Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice, respectively. Snyder’s in-production Justice League Part One film will likewise be affected by these DCEU creative team changes, it would seem.
However, the early buzz around Suicide Squad continues to be very positive and it appears that WB/DC’s plans for the future of the Suicide Squad brand – which are currently reported to include having Ayer direct a sequel next year for a 2018 theatrical release and moving forward with a Harley Quinn-led super-villainess team-up movie that Robbie herself is spearheading – have not been changed, but rather been fortified, in the wake of all of the DCEU creative personnel shake-ups. As such, the future continues to look promising for these “Worst. Heroes. Ever” on the big screen right now.
Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice is now playing in U.S. theaters. Suicide Squad will arrive on August 5, 2016, followed by Wonder Woman on June 2, 2017; Justice League Part One on November 17, 2017; The Flash on March 16, 2018; Aquaman on July 27, 2018; an untitled DC Film on October 5, 2018; Shazam on April 5, 2019; Justice League Part Two on June 14, 2019; an untitled DC film on November 1, 2019; Cyborg on April 3, 2020; and Green Lantern Corps on June 19, 2020.