Suicide Squad's Cut El Diablo Ending Proves the Studio Butchered Ayer's Film Beyond Repair
Though it was praised among niche circles and successfully turned Margot Robbie's Harley Quinn into a cultural icon, 2016's Suicide Squad was critically and commercially panned.
Its director recently took to Twitter to reveal one character's cut ending, embodying the overlying issue with the film.
David Ayer has long said that his original vision of the film would have been far superior to the theatrical version. Cries of "Release the Ayer cut!" have echoed throughout social media, replicating what happened with Zack Snyder's cut of Justice League a few years ago.
One Twitter user said that 2016's Suicide Squad should have ended with El Diablo paying homage to his family, whom he'd accidentally killed when he'd lost control of his powers.
The fan said he'd wanted El Diablo's new teammates to help him, giving the film a familial character development. Ayer quote-tweeted the fan, saying he had a similar idea.
He said that his film would have ended with El Diablo making an ofrenda (an alter that honors the dead) and lighting it with his pyrokinetic powers – the same powers that killed his family. "Studio cut it out," he said. "And killed him."
Ultimately, the studio decided to give El Diablo a redemption arc. He saved his new teammates in the final moments of the climactic battle, sacrificing his life to defeat Incubus and Enchantress. While Ayer's ending was far more heartfelt and brought closure to the reformed criminal, movie studios are suckers for redemption arcs and sacrificial heroes.
Fans responded to the tweet, generally in support of Ayer.
One compared Ayer's situation to that of Zack Snyder, who also faced studio interference in his Justice League trilogy. He wondered why Warner Bros. "put a hatchet" to their works and was "sad the good original work never got to be seen."
The issue with Warner Bros.' failed DCEU was that they constantly tried to catch up to what Marvel was doing with the MCU. Rather than allowing the film's creator to tell his story in the best way possible, the studio would interfere and try to implement well-received elements from other studios' movies. This led to out-of-place humor, rushed team-ups, and – of course – the obligatory redemption and sacrifice.
DC followed up with a part-reboot, part-sequel The Suicide Squad in 2021, directed by James Gunn. Gunn was recently named co-CEO of DC's film studio. Now a true filmmaker is calling the shots for DC's future – rather than a lifelong executive. Fans hope this means the days of studio interference in DC movies have ended.