An interview with James Gunn-the mind behind the craziest film in the DCEU

Recently I was invited to watch an early screening of The Suicide Squad movie and I am still not over it! The film is going to blow so many people away and the trailers barely scratched the surface. Gore, action, fighting, charm and more gore! Here is a link to my Twitter thread where I discuss the movie and there are NO spoilers!

Warner Bros UK invited me to the screening so I could prepare for my interview with James Gunn, the writer and director of this epic comic-book movie. I wanted to get into the mind of the person who created this explosive story and helped bring this group of crazy characters to life. I needed to know how that wonderful imagination works!

We talked about his happiest moments, his favourite scenes, Margot Robbie and what it was like working with Sylvester Stallone again. I had to ask a question about my boy. King Shark was one of my many highlights! 


Luke Bugg (The Geek Of Steel):
Hello James.  I saw the film yesterday and I am still trying to process all the thoughts that are in my head!  Every character in The Suicide Squad brings their A-Game to the movie and, for me, my favourite was King Shark.  What was it like working with Sylvester Stallone again, and how did you help him find his inner shark?

James Gunn:
I didn’t really – I really did not.  We were very lucky in that – I don’t know if I’ve told this to anybody – but, I wrote the role for Sly (Warner Bros., I know you’re listening!) but they were very hesitant about hiring Sly to play this shark, they didn’t quite see that.  I actually went through three other actors!  Two voice actors and one ‘ACTOR’ actor, and did the whole movie with three other people and, like, every single time it was, like – something isn’t right.  And people make fun of Vin Diesel and Groot all the time – the fact that he gets paid decent money to do thirteen lines per movie.  But I’m telling you, when Vin Diesel’s voice came into Groot, suddenly that character works, and I didn’t have that with King Shark, it just wasn’t working.  I think one of the hesitations of actually hiring Sly was, it’s really hard to go back once you hire Sly.  

I had to have a bunch of painful conversations with different actors that we had hired and be like “it’s not working, I’m sorry, there’s something about it that isn’t right.” and one of them is a very close friend, and then I said “I really think we should try with Sly.  I know it’s a risk, but I think that we should try because that’s how I see his voice”.  And then I called up Sly and I said “I wrote a role for you, it’s the dumbest character I have ever written.”  Well, Weasel is the dumbest character I have ever written, and he said “oh, thank you(!), I’m glad you wrote that for me!”  And I said, “would you consider doing it?”  And he said anything for me because we are close outside of the movie, and then he came in and of course you’re so scared because he’s coming into this booth, but he had the luxury of watching the entire movie with animation before we recorded him.  He saw the whole movie, he loved the movie and he loved the character and he came in and did all the crazy talking fish stuff “new dumb friends” and all that stuff.  It was just a joy, so I didn’t really have to give him too much.  You know, I changed some things around and gave him different kinds of line readings and stuff, but for the most part he came in and just murdered it from the beginning and that’s when King Shark came to life for me.

It’s obvious that you get so much enjoyment out of working so passionately on set, what was one of your favourite memories from the set of The Suicide Squad?

This is going to sound awful, but the most fun on set what was the day that Harley Quinn was getting tortured!  It’s a very simple scene, you know, Joaquín Cosí, like, torturing Margot Robbie and we just had the most fun day ever on set!  Like, the camera was working great, Margot was acting great.  That stunt where she puts her toes around the key and leans back and opens up the lock with her toes – that’s Margot Robbie, she really did that!  That’s really her putting her fucking foot up to the key and unlocking it!  

That day, for some reason, was just a lot of fun and the camerawork and stuff.  And also, I think, in the middle of a lot of days that were really hard, and it wasn’t as hard as it was all in one place and we can focus on this one thing for a whole day, and that made it less stressful than some of the other days, but I don’t get that stressed out like I used to, anyway.  That one day – that was fun!


Thank you, James!

The Suicide Squad is released in the UK on the 30th of July and in America on the 6th of August. Watch this on the largest screen you can find!

Categories: Interviews, Movies

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