Ayer On “Suicide Squad” Backlash Intensity

Filmmaker David Ayer made a name for himself as a gritty dramatist, one who broke into Hollywood with some strong screenplays usually involving cops and intense situations including “Training Day,” “Dark Blue,” “The Fast and the Furious” and “U-571”.

He then turned to directing where his output has been more of a mixed bag. “Harsh Times,” “End of Watch” and “Fury” are all films better than their reputation suggests. The same isn’t true of “Sabotage,” “Suicide Squad” and “Bright” which have been lambasted to the high hills.

Chatting with EW recently, he revealed that it was the negative critical consensus on “Suicide Squad” that left him the most shaken of his career:

“It was s–t. Yeah, it was s–t reviews. I got my throat cut. It was a super polarizing movie. Incredibly polarizing. It’s like going to the boxing ring and getting knocked out is how it felt. And I had to go into the ring again. And directing is a confidence game, because you’re selling everyone on something that only exists in your head. The actors have to feel that confidence to trust that you know what you’re doing, and so does your crew. As a director, you set the tone. Really, it’s coming off that movie, I understood the pitfalls, I understood the dangers, I knew where the alligators hide, you know? And so I made damn sure I didn’t repeat any mistakes.”

Ayer has been linked to the “Suicide Squad” spin-off “Gotham City Sirens,” but more recently the just green lit “Bright” sequel looks like it has taken priority and will be his next project.