Getting a bunch of people to work together is no easy task, especially if those people are all supervillains and there are a lot of super-sized egos at play. The same is true when it comes to getting big names together to form an ensemble movie cast, as director David Ayer learned while assembling the first big-screen version of Suicide Squad.
The movie’s cast includes Will Smith as Deadshot, Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn, Jai Courtney as Captain Boomerang and Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje as Killer Croc. Mad Max: Fury Road star Tom Hardy was also set to star as Rick Flag, but later dropped out – citing scheduling conflicts as the reason.
Hardy is currently filming The Revenant, a Western revenge drama from Birdman director Alejandro González Iñárritu, which has run on for several months longer than expected due to the difficult nature of the locations being used. There was some speculation that the filming delays might just be an excuse to cover up the fact that Hardy didn’t want to do Suicide Squad (even more so after Jake Gyllenhaal turned down the role), but in a new interview with Collider Hardy reiterated that this was not the case.
“There’s a very practical element as to why I’ve missed out on that foray, which is because Alejandro has overshot by three months in Calgary, so we’ve got to go back out to Patagonia or Alaska to continue shooting The Revenant, which has turned into a much bigger beast than we thought, but that also looks exceptional…
“Literally we wrapped in Calgary for now until we go back in July. It would have smashed the two, I would’ve had a beard. It was just not gonna happen so I got ass-slammed technically out of Suicide Squad, gutted, so I had to hand it over to Joel Kinnaman, who will do an amazing job.”
Rick Flag, the role Hardy was set to play, is the leader of Task Force X (a.k.a. Suicide Squad), a team of supervillains who take on dangerous black ops missions in exchange for commuted sentences. Rick himself is not a supervillain, but works alongside the famous bad guys and girls of the DC universe as their field commander. Robocop star Joel Kinnaman has since been cast as Hardy’s replacement.
Hardy, who has played a DC character before in The Dark Knight Rises, praised Suicide Squad‘s script and teased some interesting events involving the Joker and Harley:
“Warner Bros. is my home studio and I love them so I was really bummed out. I wanted to work on that and I know the script is really f***ing alley and I also know what’s gonna happen with The Joker and Harley Quinn in that; I won’t give away too much… it’s f**king alley. And that whole territory is something that I would certainly—I mean, everybody loves The Joker. Everybody loves The Joker. Will Smith is a dope guy, but everybody loves The Joker and that’s gonna, I think, be a very important film for fans.”
“Alley,” according to Collider‘s translation, means “right up there with the best.” This really isn’t a thing that people say in England, but perhaps Hardy has taken to inventing his own slang.
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.