James Gunn’s THE SUICIDE SQUAD already looks like it’s going to be a wild ride, but from the sound of things, the Peacemaker TV series will take Gunn’s crazy world of sub-tier supervillains to the next level. The role of the ruthless killer who believes in achieving peace at any cost was originally ear-marked for Dave Bautista, but when the actor set his sights on Zack Snyder’s Army of the Dead, James Gunn went with John Cena, which proved to be a great choice.
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“He was a bit of a risk,” James Gunn told Entertainment Weekly. “I’m hiring someone without auditioning. But he came in on the first day and just slayed and ended up being the best improvisational actor I’ve ever worked with in my life.” Gunn was then inspired to approach Warner Bros. about developing a Peacemaker TV show, which was quickly greenlit and recently wrapped production. John Cena chimed in to tease that the series “actually turns up the volume on anything that you see in The Suicide Squad. I want people to enjoy The Suicide Squad and I really think they will. Once they get a feel for these characters they’re going to want more and that’s where Peacemaker picks up.“
While we haven’t seen much of what the eight-episode series has in store for us, James Gunn has previously teased that the Peacemaker series has followed in the R-rated footsteps of the feature-film, as “it would be forty seconds long” if they edited it for broadcast TV. Bring it on. Although James Gunn had to shoot Peacemaker during COVID, he said that it’s been a “complete joy” to work on. “There’s so many things I love about filmmaking, but with a TV show, you really are able to breathe,” Gunn said. “So it’s so fun and so comfortable. I love these characters and you can really get to know these characters in a nuanced way. It’s also giving me a way to deal with some things politically that are going on in the world.“
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The official synopsis for The Suicide Squad:
Welcome to hell — a.k.a. Belle Reve, the prison with the highest mortality rate in the US of A. Where the worst Super-Villains are kept and where they will do anything to get out—even join the super-secret, super-shady Task Force X. Today’s do-or-die assignment? Assemble a collection of cons, including Bloodsport, Peacemaker, Captain Boomerang, Ratcatcher 2, Savant, King Shark, Blackguard, Javelin and everyone’s favorite psycho, Harley Quinn. Then arm them heavily and drop them (literally) on the remote, enemy-infused island of Corto Maltese.
The Suicide Squad will hit theaters on August 5, 2021 and start streaming on HBO Max the following day. The Peacemaker TV seres will debut on HBO Max in January 2022.