Give This Navy Veteran's Cinematic Vision A Chance To Be Seen

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Navy Veteran David Ayers raw and honest vision for "Suicide Squad" deserves more. Demand WarnerMedia & DC release the Ayer Cut!


Having directed the World War II film, "Fury," starring Brad Pitt, as well as directing or writing for "End of Watch," "Training Day," "Dark Blue" and "Sabotage," WarnerMedia Studios and DC were rightly confident in Navy Veteran David Ayer when they called on him to direct the original ""Suicide Squad1."

But, the "Suicide Squad" David Ayer created and the one released in theaters in 2016 are far from the same film. Ayer's original vision was reined in by the studio after having decided it was too dark to fit into the DC Extended Universe.

The result was a box office flop that even Ayer was reticent to talk about publicly for years.

"I know it's a controversial film, I really tried to make something different, with a look and feel of its own," Ayer wrote to a fan on Twitter. "Nothing hurts more than to pick up a newspaper and see a couple years of your blood, sweat, and tears ripped to shreds. The hate game is strong out there2."

Ayer lost his father to suicide on Christmas Day when he was 4 years old. He spent the following years in the foster care system. He did not have a fortunate childhood, but said he found a purpose once he joined the Navy and served on a nuclear submarine.

During his service, Ayer says he "experienced things that seared my soul. Try 67 days underwater in a steel tube when you're running out of food. The Navy broke me. And the Navy saved me. I learned discipline, and the Navy gave me a work ethic."

"I put my life into 'Suicide Squad,'" Ayer writes. "I made something amazing. My cut is [an] intricate and emotional journey with some 'bad people' who are sh*t on and discarded [a theme that resonates in my soul]. The studio cut is not my movie. Read that again.

"And my cut is not the 10-week director's cut," he continues. "It's a fully mature edit by [editor] Lee Smith standing on the incredible work by [editor] John Gilroy. It's all Steven Price's brilliant score, with not a single radio song in the whole thing. It has traditional character arcs, amazing performances, a solid 3rd act resolution. A handful of people have seen it. If someone says they have seen it, they haven't.”

WarnerMedia Studios CEO Ann Sarnoff has said that the studio will not "be developing David Ayer's cut3." But, as seen in the release of Zack Snyder's original cut of the "Justice League," also a box-office failure the first time through, pressure from fans goes a long way4.

Fans of this veteran's honest and raw direction are still hoping the Ayer Cut will see the light of day. Click below to join them in demanding that WarnerMedia and DC release David Ayer's original vision for "Suicide Squad" now.

More on this issue:

  1. Ethan Shanfield, Variety (2021), "David Ayer."
  2. David Ayer, Twitter (29 July 2021), "My turn...."
  3. Variety (29 July 2021), "David Ayer Slams Studio Cut of 'Suicide Squad,' Praises James Gunn's New Movie."
  4. Tracy Brown, Los Angeles Times (19 March 2021), "Timeline: How 'Zack Snyder's Justice League' happened."
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The Petition:

To the CEOs of WarnerMedia and DC,

Navy Veteran David Ayer did not have a fortunate childhood. He lost his father to suicide on Christmas Day when he was 4 years old. He spent the following years suffering abuse in the foster care system.

It was once he joined the Navy that he found a purpose while serving on a nuclear submarine.

Since retiring from the Navy, Ayer has reached acclaim for his honest and raw writing and directorial talents on movies like "End of Watch," "Training Day," "Dark Blue" and "Sabotage." His work on the 2016 WarnerMedia Studios release "Suicide Squad" could have reached even greater heights were it not dismantled and released in a new genre.

As seen in the release of Zack Snyder's original cut of the "Justice League," also a box-office failure the first time through, pressure from fans goes a long way in helping studios create films that are truly loved.

I demand you release the Ayer cut of "Suicide Squad" to streaming platforms and theaters, and honor this veteran's contribution to the DC Extended Universe.

Sincerely,

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