Ayer Explains Joker’s Tattoos In “Squad”

Filmmaker David Ayer has given a lengthy and intriguing new interview talking about the significance of The Joker’s tattoos in his upcoming film adaptation of the “Suicide Squad” comics.

Talking with Yahoo Movies about how his version of the Clown Prince of Crime is different, he discussed the tattoos that Jared Leto’s character sports. The designs, which have yielded a divisive reaction, apparently play a key role in The Joker’s story:

“A lot of it has to do with creating a character with some kind of history and footprint in our world. And not have this sacrosanct being outside of our continuum, our reality. If a guy like him really existed today, where would he come from? How would he do business? Who would he know? What would he look like? In my mind, I took a lot of inspiration from drug lords on Instagram. It’s a great way to understand the lifestyle of a villain.

The tattoos tell a very specific story, and eventually people will decipher them and understand what’s going on, but obviously they’re contentious, any time you do something new it’s contentious. There’s very specific stories and easter eggs in those tattoos. And even his teeth, there’s an entire story behind that which is absolutely canon. It’s putting his history on his body. This Joker is a little more working class, who I believe could live in our world.”

Asked to elaborate on Leto’s decision to go method for the role, Ayer says everyone involved in the production are aware of how much Leto puts into the character:

“With Jared, it’s tough for him. He constantly has to give birth to himself, he goes away, he comes back, he shoots, he goes away… The Joker is something you have to be, and you can see how exhausting and painful it is for him to be this character. But you can feel it when he comes to work, the crew feels it, everyone feels it. It’s like the birds stop flying. He’s f—ng terrifying.”

“Suicide Squad” is currently targeting an August 5th release.