A VFX reel for Suicide Squad reveals that El Diablo (Jay Hernandez) originally survived to the end of the movie, indicating that the decision to kill him off was made during reshoots. In the theatrical cut of the film, El Diablo sacrifices himself in order to take down Incubus, the brother of Enchantress.
Directed by David Ayer, Suicide Squad featured a range of popular and lesser-known DC villains, who come together (not voluntarily, mind you) to form a special black ops team designed to tackle superpowered threats. The film was hotly anticipated after a series of strong trailers, but went into heavy reshoots that made significant changes to the story, such as drastically cutting down Jared Leto's role as the Joker. Ultimately the reshoots didn't quite seem to pay off, instead resulting in a bloated budget and a finished product that was maligned by critics. Nonetheless, Suicide Squad ended up grossing more than $746 million worldwide, and has a sequel on the way.
A demo reel by Suicide Squad VFX compositor Francisco Franco features clips from a number of different projects, including Ayer's urban fantasy film Bright and Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle. Of particular interest, however, is a before-and-after clip that shows El Diablo standing with the rest of the Suicide Squad over the fallen Enchantress, before being wiped from the shot to fit with the final version of the movie, where El Diablo had already been killed off by that point.
Hernandez has indicated in the past that his character originally made it to the end credits. In a 2016 interview with ComicBook.com, he said:
“It was interesting, because there were some changes that happened later on... I didn’t know that’s how the end was going to happen, early on. For me, it was important to make it good, make it impressive, and go out in a blaze of glory. Ultimately, I think it worked to give it some meaning, some emotional weight to the end of the story.”
Of course, in comic books characters are never truly dead, so it's not out of the question that El Diablo could somehow return in a future sequel. When exactly we'll see that sequel is another matter; updates on Suicide Squad 2 haven't been particularly forthcoming. Last year we learned that Gavin O'Connor (Warrior) would be directing the sequel, but it looks like it won't start filming until 2019 at the earliest. Hernandez may be too busy to rejoin the gang anyway, as he'll soon be making his debut as the title character of CBS' Magnum, P.I. reboot.
Source: Francisco Franco
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