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David Ayer Shares a Personal Story and Insight on Full Suicide Squad Cut

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Ahead of the release for James Gunn’s The Suicide Squad, some have brought up David Ayer’s 2016 Suicide Squad as a comparison. However, Ayer has maintained that the theatrical release of Suicide Squad is not his vision for the movie and in a lengthy, passionate statement he shared some details about his director’s cut and why he will continue to work as a director despite setbacks.

In a personal letter Ayer published on Twitter, the director says he put his life into Suicide Squad and called his cut an “intricate and emotional journey with some “bad people” who are sh*t on and discarded (a theme that resonates in my soul). The studio cut is not my movie.”

Ayer’s version was edited by longtime Christopher Nolan collaborator Lee Smith, who worked on the film after editor John Gilroy. The music, by Steven Price, would have scored the entire soundtrack “with not a single radio song in the whole thing,” according to Ayer.

“It has traditional character arcs, amazing performances, a solid 3rd Act resolution,” Ayer adds before writing that only a handful of people have seen it. So if someone says they’ve seen it, “they haven’t” Ayer says.

Ayer’s full letter charts his personal history growing up in foster care and then on the streets of South LA and getting involved with gang activity. Ayer joined the Navy after dropping out of high school and later wrote Training Day starring Denzel Washington based on his own South LA experiences with the law and drugs.

This history also informed his approach to Suicide Squad, but that vision will likely not be released and Ayer says he “will no longer speak publicly on this matter.”

Source: Twitter

However, Ayer congratulated James Gunn and WB for the film and ensuring the franchise continues. Ayer’s letter was met with thanks from other DC directors including Gunn as well as Birds of Prey director Cathy Yan.

Ayer first began talking about his cut of Suicide Squad around the time fans began their campaign to release the Snyder Cut of Justice League. After WB finally released Zack Snyder’s Justice League as an HBO Max exclusive, a campaign began to #ReleaseTheAyerCut. But WB says it had no plans to follow up with any more director’s cuts of DC films.

You can read Ayer’s full letter in the tweet embedded above, or check out IGN’s The Suicide Squad review for our take on the latest DC film.

Matt T.M. Kim is IGN’s News Editor.

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