Despite initial reticence when the first picture of Jared Leto‘s Joker was released with an all-too-obvious “damaged” tattooed on his forehead, anticipation for Suicide Squad, the DC Extended Universe‘s next installment after the just released Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, has been steadily building as more and more material has been released. A lot of that has to do with the fact that Leto’s Joker actually looks really intriguing. Following Heath Ledger’s incredible portrayal of the iconic character in Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight is probably the least enviable job for an already accomplished actor so far this century, but it looks like Leto has attacked the project with gusto. Will Smith recently praised the performance of his costar and now director David Ayers has shared some glowing remarks about the actor.
In a recent interview with Total Film, shared via DCVertigoDaily, Suicide Squad director David Ayers had this to say about star Jared Leto’s portrayal of the Joker:
“What Jared has done is absolutely incredible. When he steps onto the set the world stops. Everything stops. What he’s done is so powerful, so menacing, and so palpable, you can feel him. The crew stops working and just watches him. I have to get everybody going again because he’s so fascinating.”
In most jobs, an employee who distracts and causes everyone else stop working would have to be fired; that’s how milkshake mix floods the drive-thru area and triple bypass patients flatline. Luckily for Leto, his menacing palpability is well received in show business. Since Man of Steel and Batman v Superman both hold mixed reviews, with almost no one saying that those movies hit the nail perfectly on the head, hopefully DC and Warner Bros. will allow their smaller, non-tentpole movies to veer away from the overstuffed, serious face aesthetic that seems to favor grimdark spectacle to more character driven, emotionally fulfilling content. So far, trailers for Suicide Squad look like it may do just that, or at least take itself a bit less seriously and have some fun.
Comic books fans desperately want DC to nail their characters and content the way that Marvel has been for almost a decade now. Hopefully, Suicide Squad will be proof that they’ll get there. Just give them time.
What do you think of Ayers’ words on Leto? Are you excited for his Joker?