David Ayer, Warner Bros. produced dueling cuts of Suicide Squad before release

Despite a mountain of buzz from those awesome pre-release trailers, the reviews are in — and Suicide Squad is apparently a Batman v Superman-sized mess of its own. Now it seems the studio had an inkling things could be going awry.

The Hollywood Reporter has an excellent breakdown of all the behind-the-scenes drama that surrounded Suicide Squad, from the reshoots to make it more “fun” to the compressed production schedule (Ayer reportedly cranked out the script in six weeks) to hit the already announced target release date Warner Bros. rolled out when it announced its slate of almost a dozen DC films.

But it’s the editing troubles that are arguably the most interesting. The report cites studio sources who claim Warner Bros. executives and Ayer’s team had dueling cuts of the film — with Ayer’s presumably a more serious cut and the studio version a bit more wacky and bombastic (with an assist from the Trailer Park, the folks who cut the film’s trailers).

Ayer was apparently involved in the process with both cuts, and after test screenings favored the studio version (with more character intros early and bigger effects), it came out on top. Sadly, at least judging by the reviews, it might not have been the best call (or who knows, maybe the other cut was even more of a mess?). 

After all the reshoots and marketing, the film reportedly needs to hit $750+ million at the box office just to break even — which is no small task (in general), but especially coming in the wake of Batman v Superman’s lackluster word of mouth.

It’s going to be a fun weekend, y’all.

(Via The Hollywood Reporter)

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